|Throat congestion is a very common problem that affects both children and adults. A congested throat usually occurs when you have a cold or the flu. Sputum may also be due to an infection in the back of throat caused by tonsillitis, pharyngytis, laryngitis, sinusitis, catarrh or strep throat. Throat congestion may also be associated with other viral infections such as measles, chicken pox, whooping cough, croup or mononucleosis.
Environmental factors such as smoking, breathing secondhand smoke, consuming large amounts of alcohol, inhaling polluted air or chemical fumes may also contribute to thick or excessive mucus or phlegm in the throat. The throat becomes congested when the mucus membranes that line the lungs are irritated and as result more mucus is released. Symptoms of pain, swelling, itchy or scratchy throat, dry cough, ear pain, runny nose, difficulty swallowing and a high fever may also be experienced.