Lozanges in action Anti-irritant and Anti-microbial potential

The word lozenge is derived from a word to refer as a diamond i.e a form of Rhombus. It is basically a French word LOSANGE. About 1000 B.C, the Egyptian used to make from honey flavored with citrus herbs, and spices, which was more curable for the treatment of sore throat. As right from the time of immemorial, there have been a number of remedies and practices are being done to ease strep throat pain. Drinking warm water, beverages such as herbs tea with honey or even just hot water with or without honey could help to relieve the pain of throat. Herbal nature of additive is no doubt beneficial. Even in the 9th century some physician discovered morphine and Heroine which have a role in the suppression of cough.

A throat lozenge is no doubt a pleasant and effective small tablet for the relief of coughing, oral thrush, nose blocked etc. Simply just sucking the medicated lozenges allows to be dissolved slowly in the mouth and its active ingredients work directly on the sore area of the mouth and throat. Lozenges also help to lubricate and soothe the painful area. However, one of its actions that have been explored is to kill microbes particularly the bacteria associated with mouth and throat infection. It also cools the nasal passage and equally targets all types of cough. It provides energy to lungs and also provides relief form difficulty in breathing, irritation of lungs, dryness and roughness of the air passages of lungs. Lozenges can also be successfully used in the early stage of whooping cough, bronchitis and pharyngitis. In Karachi, our research laboratory at Department of Microbiology, Federal Urdu University took an initiative to screen them out and explore the anti-bacterial and anti-fungal potential i.e. indeed a totally new horizon. Our laboratory has screened the lozenges that have a natural active ingredient against almost 24 bacterial cultures and 14 fungal cultures that are highly pathogenic to humans.

Most commercial lozenges contain benzocain, an anesthetic or encalyptus oil, and non menthol. Throat lozenges are generally used either zinc gluconate glycine or pectin; some varieties of throat lozenges contain dextromethorphan, menthol, peppermint oil, honey, herbs as their active ingredients. Several cough suppressant lozenges are manufactured commercially available in Pakistan such as strepsils, pulmonal, surficol etc, they come in varieties of flavors and could stifle the soreness and there are some brand lozenges that are best in taste and largest selling over the world includes, chloraseptic, strepsil, ludens, Halls,Vicks, fishermans etc. These in fact depend on where the peoples live and peoples can buy them from some places and other places easily. Some of these lozanges also help to numb the throat in order to stop or dull the sensation, and even regular lozenges that simply coat the throat can help to keep it from feeling raw and painful.

This is a fact that medicine and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. If the children under six years of age and people with rare hereditary problems of fructose intolernce, glucose, galctose malabsorption (The lozenges contains glucose and sucrose). If somebody experience this so he/she ought to stop using lozenges and consult to doctors. Moreover, one should be careful for dosage as well as lozenge every 3-6 hours if needed, but do not use more than five a day. Move the lozenge around the mouth while sucking it, this will help to prevent any irritation in the mouth. It has been noticed that side effects are uncommon and are usually not really critical.

As we all know, sore throat is an inflammation of pharynx which is the tube that extends from the back of the mouth to the esophagus. There are certain strep throat and other form of bacterial pharyngitis cause sore throat often more severe and of worst nature like the chief symptoms include swallowing and redness appeared in the throat. Some other bacterial sore throat symptoms include fever, Body ache, headache, enlarged tonsils, swollen in the front of the neck.

One should know the post-infectious complication as untreated strep throat can lead to rheumatic fever and scarlet fever. In view of this, it is highly important to procure medical help as early as possible for mild sore throat that accompany a cold or allergy. Similarly, a throat infection with fungi (candida or “yeast”) sometimes can also cause throat infection pain difficulty swallowing and white patches inside the mouth this throat infection commonly called Candidiasis, oropharyngeal candidiasis or thrush. It is most often seen in infant, people whose immune system is weak. As far as prevention is concerned, smokers should avoid smoking; avoid cold dry air, acid reflux and polluted air. Similarly, wash hands away from eyes and face, eat a healthy diet, get plenty of rest and drinking plenty of fluids can also help speed healing, hypersensitivity and food allergy is also the main cause of sore throat.

Tehmina Hamdani (M.Sc in Microbiology) is engaged in research studies in many projects and has practical experience in clinical laboratory, while Sikandar K. Sherwani is a renowned microbiologist and recipient of national and international awards in the field of clinical microbiology and medicinal plant screening.

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