Propolis, natural help for the throat

More than half of Spaniards suffer throat problems at least once a year and a third two or more times, according to a survey by the Research Center on Phytotherapy (INFITO) to 2,400 people. Women are the ones who suffer throat problems more frequently.

"The throat is one of the areas most vulnerable to the cold and the passage of external agents that cause infections, which is why it is important to follow a series of cares that help us to prevent the pain and afonias, frequent at this time, over everything if the voice is used to work, "says Dr. Carlos Ramírez, co-director of the Otorhinolaryngology service of Vithas Nuestra Señora de América Hospital.

The most frequent sore throat

The most common throat discomforts during the winter "are pain, stinging, itching or irritation, which can lead to cough, hoarseness or hoarseness," says Dr. Ramírez. Among the main factors that influence when suffering these symptoms are cold and dry air, sudden temperature variations, high heat or cold drinks. "All of them can irritate the laryngeal mucosa or inflame the pharyngeal tissue and make it more vulnerable to the passage of viruses and bacteria," he says.

To avoid irritation and inflammation of the throat, it is advisable to follow preventive measures that include proper hydration to protect the mucosa and vocal cords from infectious agents, a varied diet rich in fruits and vegetables to strengthen the defenses, avoid alcohol and Tobacco, rest well, wear breathable outerwear and proper hygiene to avoid infection. In addition, "it may be useful to take pharmaceutical preparations of propolis, a natural substance made by bees that can help relieve mild throat symptoms and protect the vocal cords," says Dr. Ramírez.

This otorhinolaryngologist advises "not to take antibiotics if the cause of the discomfort is viral, as it usually happens in case of flu or cold, because in these cases they are not indicated", he warns. On the other hand, if the symptoms are persistent, it will be necessary to visit the doctor.

In the case of voice professionals, "the discomfort can be a major handicap since it affects their daily work, and are more likely to suffer afflictions and dysphonia, common in singers, radio announcers or teachers, if they are persistent they can hide other pathologies such as polyps or nodules, which are more difficult to appreciate, "says Dr. Ramírez.

Natural help for the throat

Propolis is a natural substance that bees obtain from the buds of different plant species and used to cover the walls of hives and protect them from germs, bacteria or fungi. "It has antiviral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties so it helps protect the mucosa of the throat and vocal cords, which is why its use is recommended during the winter in people prone to suffer discomfort, as well as in voice professionals", explains Professor Concha Navarro, president of INFITO and Professor of Pharmacology at the University of Granada.

It is "a substance with a high prophylactic value because it contains resins, wax, essential oil, pollen, minerals and vitamins (mainly provitamin A and vitamins of group B)," says Professor Navarro. Among the organic substances that make up the propolis are organic and phenolic acids, aromatic aldehydes and flavonoids.

Marina Berrio
Advice: Doctor Carlos Ramírez, co-director of the Otorhinolaryngology service of Vithas Hospital Nuestra Señora de América

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Video: How to Treat a Sore Throat Naturally

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