Learning about Health

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What are tonsil stones?

April 16th, 2015

What are the causes of Tonsil Stones?

Tonsils are filled with crannies and nooks where bacteria as well as other materials, such as mucous and dead cells, can become trapped. In case this happens, the trapped materials can become concentrated in white formations that form in the pockets.

When the trapped materials calcify or harden, tonsils stones, which are also known as tonsilloliths, are formed. This usually happens in people who suffer from chronic inflammation in their tonsils or those who experience repeated bouts of tonsillitis.

Symptoms of Tonsils Stones 

In most cases small tonsil stones do not cause noticeable symptoms. Additionally, some large tonsil stones are only discovered incidentally on CT scans or X-rays. However, other large tonsil stones may have several symptoms including the following:

-Bad breath

This is one of the main symptoms of tonsil stones. The bad breath, also referred to as halitosis, accompanies a tonsil infection.

-Sore throat

The presence of a tonsil stone may lead to pain or discomfort in the area where it is lodged.

-Difficulty swallowing

A tonsil stone may cause pain or difficulty when one is swallowing food or liquids. However, this depends on the size or location of the tonsil stone.

-White debris

In some cases, tonsil stones can be seen in the back of the throat as a lump of solid white material.

-Ear pain

Due to the fact that tonsils share nerve pathways with the ears, tonsil stones may cause a person to experience pain in the ear.

-Tonsil swelling

A tonsil stone may cause a tonsil to swell or become larger.

How to get rid of Tonsil Stones

The most appropriate treatment option of a tonsil stone depends on its size as well as its potential to cause adverse health conditions or discomfort. The available options include the following:

-Surgical removal

This option is recommended when the tonsil stones are extremely large and are accompanied by symptoms. In such cases, the only option is to remove them surgically. In some cases, a surgeon can perform this simple procedure using a local numbing agent. However, certain other cases may require the surgeon to use general anesthesia.

-Use of antibiotics

There are various types of antibiotics which are used to treat tonsil stones. Some people find them useful while others do not benefit from using them. However, antibiotics cannot correct the basic problem that leads to tonsil stones. In addition, they can have side effects. This remedy is also excellent for getting rid of hemorrhoids as well.

-At- home remedies

There are various methods which can be used to remove kidney stones at home.

They include:

-Salt water gargles: Gargling thoroughly with warm, salty water can help loosen the tonsil stones. However, you will have to repeat the process for several days. If this fails, look for another method.

-Use a water flosser

You can use a water flosser to spray your tonsils with water in order to remove the tonsil stones. Spray from a distance to avoid damaging your tonsils.

-Use a cotton swab or a medicine dropper

You can use a cotton swab to gently rub against the tonsil stone in order to help dislodge them. A medicine dropper makes use of suction to dislodge tonsil stones from the tonsils.

-Use of fingers

You can use your fingers to push against the tonsils in order to remove the tonsil stones. This is actually the easiest way to do it. However, this may cause a gag reflex in some people. You only need to do it gently in order to avoid injuring yourself.

Using at-home remedies to remove tonsil stones reduces the need for medical intervention.

Learning about Health

Everything you need to know about living a healthy lifestyle