Sore Throat Treatment and Advice Service

About this service

Sore throat is a painful swelling at the back of the mouth. It is a common condition that clears up on its own after about 2 to 3 weeks but you can now visit you local pharmacy and receive treatments to fight the infection or advice on how to help relieve the symptoms.

Our expert pharmacy teams will assess and can supply treatments for your sore throat in adults and children over 5 years old.

Sore throat symptoms include:

  • a painful throat, especially when swallowing
  • a dry, scratchy throat
  • redness in the back of your mouth
  • bad breath
  • a mild cough
  • swollen neck glands

Our trained pharmacist will ask you a few questions about your infection and the symptoms you have.

They will also check for any other conditions or symptoms that may need them to refer you to another NHS service for further checks.

This is a free NHS service if you are exempt from prescription charges.

Our pharmacy team will also give you other advice and suggest other treatments for the relief of symptoms.

This is a drop-in service but you may want to check with the pharmacy before heading to your local branch.

Our teams on hand to supply treatments for sore throat in adults and children over 5. Effective treatment options for sore throat, scratchy or painful throat, painful swallowing in Doncaster, Rotherham, Sheffield, Scunthorpe, South Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire with Pharmacy First.


What is a sore throat?
Sore throats are quite common through the winter months and are usually self-limiting, which means they will get better on their own.
A sore throat is when there is irritation or pain in the throat with or without swelling.
What are the symptoms of a sore throat?
There are a range of symptoms associated with a sore throat and these vary in how sever they can be:
• Pain or discomfort: Soreness, irritation or pain in the throat is the most common symptom.
• Scratchy/itchy: the feeling in the throat can be described as scratchy or sometimes itchy.
• Dryness: the throat can become dry.
• Swallowing: Swallowing may become difficult with a sore throat making eating difficult or uncomfortable.
• Voice: Your voice may become hoarse or sound different.
• Swollen glands: Lymph nodes in the neck may become swollen or tender to touch.
• Redness: The back of the throat may appear red or inflamed.
• Coughing: Sore throats can trigger a cough, especially if it is associated with a runny nose, or if the sore throat is associated with a viral infection such as cold or flu.
• Tiredness: Sore throats can lead to an overall feeling of tiredness.
• Bad breath: Bacteria or debris in the throat may result in bad breath.
What causes a sore throat?
The most common causes of a sore throat are:
• Viral infections: viral infections such as cold or flu can cause a sore throat. This is usually linked with other symptoms such as runny nose, cough, headache, aches and pains.
• Glandular fever: Glandular fever is a viral infection that mostly affects young adults and can cause severe sore throats and is usually accompanied by a high temperature, swollen glands or tiredness.
• Bacterial infections such as strep throat or tonsilitis: These may lead to inflammation of the throat or tonsils which can cause a painful sore throat.
• Allergies: allergies to pollen, dust or pets can lead to a sore throat.
• Environment: Exposure to smoke or pollutants can irritate the throat causing discomfort.
• Voice strain: Overusing or straining the voice such as excessive talking, singing or shouting can result in a sore throat.
Can I treat a sore throat at home?
Sore throats are self-limiting, this means that usually they will clear up on their own within a week.
There are steps you can take at home to help with soothing a sore throat, these are:
• Gargle: Gargle with warm salty water (Adults only).
• Drink plenty of water.
• Eat cool or soft foods.
• Avoid smoking or smoky places.
• Suck ice cubes or ice lollies or hard sweets – but do not give young children anything small and hard to suck because of the risk of choking.
• Rest.
If I’ve had my sore throat for over a week and it’s not getting better, what should I do?
If you have had the symptoms of a sore throat for more than 7 days and it isn’t showing signs of improvement, you can visit your local Weldricks pharmacy to speak to the pharmacist who will be able to assess your symptoms and offer medication if appropriate.
Can I bring my child to see the pharmacist, or will they have to visit the GP?
Anyone over the age of 5 years can access the pharmacy first service for their sore throat, but anyone of any age can speak to the pharmacist to receive advice on self-care and any over the counter products that may aid healing of the sore throat.

Available at the following pharmacies