What to Do When You Have a Sore Throat That Won’t Go Away

Chronic Sore Throat Causes and Treatments

What to Do When You Have a Sore Throat That Won’t Go AwayMost Americans experience the feeling of a sore throat every once in a while, whether it’s after a late night out or during allergy season, but our Los Angeles throat specialists are often met with clients who keep experiencing this kind of discomfort.

Sore throats can cause a scratchy or raw feeling, which might be worse in the morning or night, depending on the cause. They can also induce chronic coughing, which can be disruptive to your sleep cycle and those around you. If you have a job that requires you to speak, such as an instructor or singer, a sore throat can be detrimental to your job performance.

Westside Head & Neck offers ear, nose, and throat solutions to Angelenos of all kinds. We can assign you to a chronic sore throat specialist in Los Angeles who can examine your lifestyle and medical history to identify the cause of your scratchy throat. Once we find out why your throat keeps getting sore, we can develop a treatment place to stop your discomfort once and for all.

You may be surprised at the cause of your chronic throat pain in Los Angeles. Many different health problems can be the cause of your chronic sore throat, including allergies, infections, and underlying conditions. Identifying the cause is vital to getting the right treatment and avoiding anything that might trigger it.

Acid Reflux 

Acid reflux is a condition where the lower esophageal sphincter fails to close tightly, allowing stomach acid to flow backwards and back up into the esophagus. Acid reflux most often occurs at night and is accompanied by heartburn.

Exposure to stomach acid can make the throat sore, and over time, it can cause lasting damage. If you’re feeling upper stomach pain and experiencing a sour taste in your mouth, then you may want to see a doctor for acid reflux.

This condition is most often treated by lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, quitting drinking or smoking, and avoiding meals just before bedtime. An ENT doctor in Los Angeles will be able to give you a treatment plan specialized to you and your lifestyle.


Allergies cause your sinuses to become congested, and a stuffy nose will begin to drain mucus down the back of the throat, which is referred to as postnasal drip. Postnasal drip can cause the sensation of having a tickle in the throat. You may also feel like you need to constantly clear your throat or swallow.

Treating your allergies can stop this discomfort. The most common and effective sinus treatment is over-the-counter allergy medication such as Claratin or Zyrtec. However, some choose to use more holistic remedies, such as neti pots or sinus rinses to manually flush out excess mucus. Nasal sprays are also a popular option to moisten your nasal airways to minimize post nasal drip.

Mouth Breathing 

Many people don’t realize it, but breathing through your mouth is unhealthy. It can worsen asthma and cause gingivitis. Inhaling through the mouth also limits oxygen flow, causing high blood pressure, heart problems, and sleep apnea. Studies show that breathing through the nose gives your body 3x as much nitrogen oxide, which is important to your daily functions.

If you breathe exclusively through your mouth, especially when you’re asleep, this can lead to a chronic sore throat. If this is the cause of your sore throat, it will likely be worse first thing in the morning and relieved once you take a drink.

You can stop breathing through your mouth by being mindful during the day, but to limit mouth breathing during sleep, you may need to see a doctor. You may need to clear congestion in your nasal airways or change your sleeping position.


You may not think that a sexually transmitted infection can cause a sore throat, but it’s one of the main symptoms of gonorrhea. Gonorrhea is transmitted through oral, vaginal, and anal sex, and it often takes a while for symptoms to show up. Even though you may not feel symptoms until a month or so into having it, you can unknowingly spread it. That’s why it’s important to get tested for STDs regularly. Luckily, gonorrhea is treated with a dose of antibiotics.


Another cause of sore throat may be mononucleosis, also called mono, which is an infection caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. Mono will not present itself solely through a sore throat. Those suffering from mono will also experience the following:

  • Swollen tonsils
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Night sweats

Mono can last up to two months, and it’s fairly infectious, so you should try to treat it quickly and stay away from people. Most doctors recommend home remedies such as rest and drinking plenty of fluids.

Air Pollution

A chronic sore throat can often stem from external irritants as well. In a big city with many cars, air pollution can be the cause of your chronic sore throat in Los Angeles. In fact, the American Lung Association ranks Los Angeles as the city with the most pollution in the country. 2020 ended with the worst smog the city has seen in decades. On top of that, Los Angeles also ranks high on the list of U.S. cities with high pollen counts, making it even worse for breathing.

To protect yourself from smog and other kinds of air pollutants, experts recommend that you avoid spending time outdoors on days where the air quality forecast is poor. Most weather apps will display the air quality rating, so keep an eye on it. You can also buy an air purifier to filter irritants out of the air you breathe in your home, but make sure to regularly change the filter.

Chronic Laryngitis 

Those who are frequent partiers, drinkers, and smokers may develop chronic laryngitis if they continue these activities on a nightly basis. Shouting over other people at a bar or singing loudly are also to blame for developing this condition, both situations of which occur when you’re partying. Those with chronic laryngitis will experience a sore throat on a regular basis, along with a raspy voice, dry cough, or pain when swallowing.

Chronic laryngitis is easier to prevent than treat, so make sure to give your voice a rest. If you are experiencing a chronic sore throat that may be the result of nightlife, you should try to drink soothing teas and regularly use throat lozenges.

When to Contact a Doctor

A chronic sore throat is classified as a sore throat that lasts a week or more. If you are experiencing a sore throat that won’t go away, you should seek out the services of an ENT specialist in Los Angeles.

Our ENT specialists are well-versed in condition affecting the throat and can ensure that you are moving towards relief.

1301 20th Street Suite 510
Santa Monica, CA 90404

3831 Hughes Avenue Suite 704
Culver City, CA 90232


© Copyright 2013 - 2023 | West Side Head & Neck | All Rights Reserved.

Call| Text