Alternative treatments for infectious mononucleosis include bed rest, drinking adequate amounts of water, gargling with salt water and using an over-the-counter pain reliever such as Advil or Tylenol, according to Mayo Clinic. Antibiotics are not effective against viral infection but in some cases are needed to treat secondary infections such as tonsillitis or a sinus infection,
Mononucleosis is caused by the Epstein-Barr virus, reports WebMD. People who develop mononucleosis in adolescence or adulthood typically experience more severe symptoms, such as a high fever that can last for as long as three weeks. A severe sore throat and swollen lymph glands in the neck are common symptoms, while life-threatening medical complications such as a ruptured spleen or liver failure are rare. Mononucleosis in young children typically passes without being noticed or is thought to be a cold, as symptoms are very mild.
Roughly 90 percent of the adult population over the age of 35 have experienced a previous mononucleosis infection, states WebMD. Most people have the infection during childhood, causing antibodies to the virus to develop. Mononucleosis begins with symptoms that mimic the flu, such as fever, headache and lethargy. Fatigue can last for months following recovery, although most people feel much better within a two to three week time period.