Tonsil stones, also known as tonsilloliths, are off-white waste that look like pimples normally found in the back of the throat. If you are wondering what tonsils are exactly, they are the two little masses of tissues that help your immune system defend itself against bacteria and infections. Although tonsils stones are not dangerous, many people suffer from bad breath or from a sore throat because of them. You’re struggling to get rid of your tonsil stones? Don’t worry, we have the solution for you in this article.
What causes tonsil stones in my throat?
The tonsil stones are the result of an excess of food particles, bacteria, mucus, and other microbes (adenoviruses, epstein-barr virus, enterovirus). When accumulated in the back of your throat, the microbes form a little stone that will cause various effects, such as bad breath and sore throats.
What complications are caused by tonsil stones?
A tonsillitis often occurs at a young age. The common symptoms include drooling, stomachache, vomiting, and loss of appetite. For adults, there are different stages, from symptomless to breathing difficulties.
Here are some of the symptoms that you might have with a tonsil infection:
- Sore throat
- Throat swelling, the feeling of an obstruction at the top of your throat, and painful swallowing
- Foul swell from the infection
- Fever and chills
- Middle ear infection and ear pain
- Loss of appetite
- Scratchy sounding voice
How to remedy tonsillitis?
When your tonsil stones are still small, know that it is possible to remove them by yourself without too much difficulty. However, if you wait too long, the problem can become more serious. In any case, here’s our top 5 techniques of self-care and also other needed remedies when your tonsillitis becomes severe.
1. Removal of the tonsil stones by yourself
If you have had a problem with tonsillitis before, you should check the back of the throat every morning and remove the tonsil stones by yourself while they are still small.
In order to do so, you may gently remove them by using the following:
- a cotton swab
- a toothbrush
- an oral irrigator like a water-pick
- or by gargling using mouthwash
Just make sure that you don’t hurt yourself since the wounds can get infected by the same bacteria that caused the tonsil stones.
2. Take antibiotics
As tonsillitis is caused by a bacterial infection, the doctor might prescribe oral antibiotics like penicillin. In case your sickness doesn’t respond to oral medicine anymore, you will need to go to the hospital and get intravenous antibiotics instead.
Nevertheless, antibiotics are not always effective. If your tonsils are infected by a virus, in some cases, the antibiotics won’t help you. Therefore, we recommend taking paracetamol or ibuprofen to relieve pain.
3. Eat food with antibacterial properties
Some food (like certain fruits for example) contain antibacterial properties that help prevent tonsillitis:
- Yogurt contains lactobacillus acidophilus and other natural probiotics that have the ability to fight against bacterias causing tonsil stones.
- Apples have acidic properties that combat tonsil stones. Moreover, you can mix a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with warm water and gargle 3 times per day to get rid of the stones faster.
- Garlic can help remove the bacteria in your throat, thanks to its antibacterial properties.
- Onions can also help against bacteria and mucus. Eating onions regularly will help prevent tonsillitis.
- Eating carrots will help increase saliva that reduces and eliminates tonsil stones.
A cryptanalysis is the removal of tonsil crypts (fissures, cracks, or holes in the tonsils) by using a laser coupled with a radiofrequency application. As a result, the tissues in the back of your throat causing the tonsil stones will be no more. As an additional note, laser cryptanalysis is optional and not as effective as tonsillectomy.
5. Tonsillectomy (Tonsil Extraction)
This is a radical extraction of your tonsils, known as tonsillectomy. If you are suffering from a chronic tonsil infection more than seven times per year, the doctor might suggest a tonsillectomy which should resolve this problem once and for all.
Before the operation, you will need to stop taking anti-inflammatory medicines for at least two weeks. A tonsillectomy is operated under general anesthetic where your mouth is held open, while the surgeon cuts your tonsils out.
How to prevent tonsillitis?
If you ever had tonsillitis before, it is more likely that it will occur again, especially when you forget to brush your teeth or when you are sick. Here is some useful advice about what you should do to prevent tonsil stones from coming back:
- Brush and floss your teeth regularly to remove bacteria and food.
- Gargle with salt water or mouthwash after eating to prevent food buildup near tonsils.
- Change your toothbrush every 3 months.
- Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride.
- Chew sugar-free gum to stimulate saliva flow.
- Drink a lot of water.
- Avoid or limit alcohol drinking and tobacco.
- See your dentist at least once a year.
- Avoid touching your nose and lips with your dirty hands.
- Wash your hand regularly, especially before your meals.