Tonsil stones are probably familiar to you if you have ever experienced small, white, or yellowish bumps in your tonsils or at the back of your throat. Tonsil stones, also called tonsilloliths, are deposits of calcified material that form in the spaces between your tonsils.
They are made of food particles, bacteria, and cells that have died, and they get harder over time. Although tonsil stones are usually not harmful, they can cause pain and bad breath. We will talk about how to get rid of tonsil stones and prevent them from coming back in this article.
Understanding Tonsil Stones
It’s important to know what tonsil stones are and what causes them before we discuss how to get rid of them. Tonsil stones are small, calcified deposits that form in the spaces between your tonsils and are hardened. They can be as small as a rice grain or as large as a pea and are typically white or yellowish.
Food particles, bacteria, and dead cells accumulate in your tonsils’ crevices and harden into tonsil stones over time. People with larger tonsils, deep tonsil crevices, or chronic tonsillitis are more likely to develop them.
How to Prevent Tonsil Stones
Good oral hygiene practices are the first step toward preventing tonsil stones. Tonsil stones can be avoided by brushing and flossing on a regular basis and removing food particles and bacteria from your mouth. Additionally, gargling with saltwater or using a mouthwash can help keep your mouth clean and stop the bacteria that cause tonsil stones from growing.
Tonsil stones can also be prevented by avoiding certain foods, like dairy products and sugary foods. Finally, routine dental examinations can aid in the detection of potential issues early on and prevent the formation of tonsil stones.
How to Get Rid of Tonsil Stones
There are a number of ways to get rid of tonsil stones if you already have them. Small tonsil stones can be treated with home remedies, but larger or more persistent stones may require medical attention. Tonsil stones can be removed in a few common ways:
Saltwater gargle: Tonsil stones can be released by gargling with warm saltwater.
Apple cider vinegar: Tonsil stones can be broken down with the help of diluted apple cider vinegar.
Oil pulling: Tonsil stones can be removed from your mouth by swishing coconut oil around in your mouth.
Garlic: The bacteria that cause tonsil stones can be fought off by eating raw garlic or taking garlic supplements.
Lemon juice: Lemon juice has been shown to aid in the breakdown of tonsil stones and prevent their formation.
Removal with cotton swabs or curette: Tonsil stones can be gently removed with cotton swabs or a curette by a doctor.
Laser tonsil cryptolysis: The crevices in your tonsils where tonsil stones form can be vaporized with a laser.
Tonsillectomy: A tonsillectomy, which involves removing the tonsils surgically, may be recommended by a physician in severe cases.
When to See a Doctor
It is essential to see a doctor if you have persistent tonsil stones, large or painful tonsil stones, or complications like difficulty swallowing or breathing. A doctor can help you avoid problems by recommending the most effective treatments for your situation.
Tonsil stones can be unpleasant and cause bad breath, but in most cases they are not harmful. Good oral hygiene practices, such as brushing and flossing on a regular basis, are the first step in preventing tonsil stones.