Tonsil stones are white or yellowish clumps of bacteria that become lodged in the back of the mouth. Few people – even doctors – realize what they actually are, so if you have them or are not sure what they might be, you’re not alone. Health reports estimate around 6 percent of the U.S. population suffers from these bacteria buildups, a culprit of long-lasting bad breath, throat soreness and daily annoyance.
There are home remedies as well as dentist removal services available, put before you try to dislodge the tonsil stones, it’s helpful to know the following things:
What are the causes?
Also termed tonsilloliths, tonsil stones are typically caused by an accumulation of sulfur-producing bacteria and food debris, which can include mucus from post-nasal drip. The debris putrefies in the back of the throat, getting trapped in the tonsil crypts (small pockets that appear on the surface of the tonsils).
What are the symptoms?
The most common symptoms of tonsilloliths are bad breath and a sore throat. Since the lumps are made up of odor-filled bacteria, they tend to produce incessant halitosis. While smaller tonsil stones may not trigger obvious symptoms, larger ones may provoke tonsil swelling, difficulty swallowing and a “foreign body” sensation in the back of the throat. Be on the lookout for metallic taste, throat closing and coughing fits. They can irritate the throat and prompt pain that accompanies swallowing.
Recognizing tonsil stones
You can identify tonsil stones by looking in a mirror at the back of your throat. If you see white or yellow bumps on or around your tonsils, chances are that you have tonsilloliths. Some people cough the foul-smelling particles out, a telltale sign that they have the condition.
Are tonsil stones contagious?
It is nearly impossible to spread tonsil stones from person to person. They are most frequently formed because of the inner shape of tonsils in individual patients, and since each person has a varying oral structure, some tonsils simply may not be conducive to harboring tonsil stones. So, you don’t have to worry about transmitting them by kissing. However, it’s best not to share toothbrushes.
Get rid of tonsil stones
Tonsilloliths can be an embarrassing condition if the right tonsil stones solution treatments are not taken. Try out a combination of oxygenating serum and nasal-sinus drops that have shown to eliminate stones without tonsil surgery. In addition, the occasional use of an oxygenating spray will help to instantly neutralize the anaerobic bacteria on contact.