HOW TO GET RID OF TONSIL STONES
It’s okay to wake up and not be able to bear the smell from your mouth. It is even okay if sometimes, you feel like there is a lump in your throat. What is not okay is having bad breadth anytime of the day of finding it hard to swallow food or drink. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, chances are you have tonsil stones. Now, while these conditions are pretty popular among many people, this term is largely unpopular. So, what are tonsils? And what are tonsil stones?
Tonsils are the two lumps of tissue that are situated at the back of each side of the throat. Tonsils are made up of lymphoid tissue and they look like glands. The lumpoid tissue contains cells that fight against bacterial and fungal infections. They are supposed to act as guards that watch over and decide what passes through the throat but studies have shown that tonsils are not particularly excited about this job. Probably because at the initial stage, it didn’t seem like man had much need of them as there weren’t so many germs, viruses and bacteria seeking to make our lives difficult, it seems the tonsils relaxed their old and forgot their purpose. Now, when we need them, they seem to be doing more r no harm but hardly any good.
Tonsils have become so negligible that man seems to be fine with or without them as study has shown that removing the tonsils doesn’t endanger one any more than those who didn’t remove are endangered.
There hasn’t been a time when tonsil stones made for a good conversation at dinner time and there isn’t likely to be. The symptoms of tonsil stones come with such stigma; you would almost think the health condition is a myth. But tonsil stones are real. Tonsil stones are lumps that are found in the tonsils. These lumps are hard and can range in colour from white to yellow. They are also calcified materials that harden with time in the tonsils. They aren’t visible except make a serious attempt to put them within perspective like coughing and their sizes also range from small mustard seed like size to pea size. They are made up of calcium, magnesium, carbon and ammonia in indirect proportions. When infected, the tonsils can swell up to impede swallowing and also redden up.
Causes of Tonsil Stones
You may be getting the wrong idea that the tonsil stones get infected all on their own in a game of chance but this isn’t the case. However, naturally large tonsils are more prone to have tonsil stones than average-sized tonsils.
Tonsil stones occur when food particles, debris or dirt, saliva and mucus become hooked in the nets and crevices of the tonsils. Bacteria and fungi immediately take action, feeding on this package and harden it in the process. This is what really causes the bad breath that occurs with tonsil stones. Imagine all these going on just behind your throat? The process of hardening this buildup is what is known as tonsil stones and a person may have on big or small tonsil stones or they exist in small clutters at the tonsils. While anyone is prone to tonsil stone, those who have serious inflammation of the tonsils or that usually have tonsil stones are more prone to more of it. However, the hardening of tonsil stones is a rare occurrence and even if it happens, it is in small sizes. Tonsil stone is a phenomenon known to the medical community as tonsilloliths.
Symptoms of Tonsil Stones
It is rare for anyone that has tonsil stones to be unaware. While the stones themselves may not be visible, there are accompanying signs that usually follow the build-up of tonsil stones. They are;
- Bad breath
- Difficulty in swallowing
- Pain in the ear
- Swollen and reddened tonsils
- Sore throat
- White to yellow debris on tonsils.
How to Prevent Tonsil Stones
While tonsil stones are fairly common among people, there are measures that can be taken to avoid getting them. Some of these steps include;
- Nothing can take the place of good oral hygiene when it comes to preventing tonsil stones. Brush your teeth at least, two times every day. Also ensure you wash the top and back of your tongue and surrounding regions to keep bacteria and fungi away.
- Drink lots of water. This will flush away collections of fragments and debris that are collecting at the back of your throat. You will also stay hydrated by drinking lots of water and bacteria that may otherwise act of these things to cause tonsil stones are also flushed away.
- Stop smoking and excessive drinking. Also avoid late night snacking as much as possible
How to Cure Tonsil Stone
You can treat tonsil stones medically or use some home remedy treatment. Whatever the case, if you want to know how to get rid of tonsil stones naturally, there are several options for you. Here are some home remedy treatments;
Salty Water Gargle
Tonsils stones exist because of tonsils that allow debris, food crumbs and other materials to hide. With salty water gargle, you are equipped with one of the most common ways to fight tonsil stones. This method is actually common because it works. By regularly gargling salt water, the water will reach all those nooks and corners that the fragments are hiding and force them out. Even tonsil stones that may already be forming are liquefied and forced out as well. Regular gargling of salt water will prevent further formation of tonsil stones while eliminating the odour that comes from those that already formed. Note the difference between gargling and just keeping water in your mouth. You have to gargle salt water powerfully for it to be effective and this treatment is something you should do if possible, on a daily basis. Don’t wait till you have bad breath before adopting it as fragments take time to accumulate to tonsil stones.
Drinking Water regularly
Nothing can take the place of water for treating Tonsil stones. It is both a preventive and curative measure. Water hydrates the body and flushes away toxins and bacteria. Suffice to say, if you drink water regularly, all the accumulation and corporation that is needed to cause tonsil stones can’t happen. Bacteria can’t survive, food fragments and debris can’t hide, tonsil stones can’t happen.
There isn’t any health condition in the world where what you eat is of no consequence. By eating right, you will be directly and indirectly removing tonsil stones. Eat food that is rich in vitamins and probiotics so that friendly bacteria will live. These friendly bacteria can fight and win the battle for your tonsils for you more than you can do for yourself. You can take these two as food supplement or eat a lot of fruits and vegetables. Anything that makes your mouth water like cucumber and watermelon is also perfect for you.
This treatment is effective when there is already a buildup of tonsil stones that have been calcified. As you force them out by cough, they are actually reducing in number and you are getting rid and healed of them. In fact, many people become aware that they have tonsil stones when they cough one up. If that happens, intensify your coughing to cough up more.
Manual removal with Cotton Swab
Cotton swabs can be used to remove tonsil stones but you want to be careful with this one. If adequate care isn’t taken, the swab can become stuck in your throat. It is advisable you talk to your doctor before attempting it to know if it’ll be safe. Wet both ends of the cotton swabs and use a flashlight to locate the stones, use the wet ends of the swab to loosen the tonsil stones and when you are done, gargle salt water, you will be marveled by how smelly and coloured the salt water will be. This method is actually effective and also quick.
Lemon or Lime juice
There are two reasons either of these will work. They are both acidic and rich in vitamin C. lemon or lime juice will kill off the bacteria working on the debris and also loosen the tonsil stones up. Mix either of these with warm water and gargle. The tonsil stones will not only loosen up but also dissolve in the solution and you can spew it out. Do this repeatedly if you already have tonsil stones or once in a while as a preventive measure.
Garlic and Onions
These two will help combat the bacteria that are fostering your tonsil stones. Garlic and onions are anti-bacterial and help keep the mouth in good condition. These two will also get rid of the bad breath caused by tonsil stones. Eat garlic and onions everyday if you already have tonsil stones or frequently if you don’t as a preventive measure. These two also contain essential vitamins and minerals and other properties that will make it difficult for tonsil stones to harden up. By combining this with salt water gargle, you will be rid of tonsil stones in no time at all.
Removal with Toothbrush
You can use an ordinary or electric toothbrush to remove tonsil stones. Just make sure the toothbrush reaches the tonsil stones and gently use it to soften them up. In case of electric toothbrush, apply pressure with the vibrating brush on the tonsil stones to loosen them up. Once this is done, use mouthwash to gargle the loosened particles out.
Medical Treatment of Tonsil Stones
There are some cases where you feel strongly about your tonsil stones or they are deep seated that nothing you try seems to work. For some, they just want them out of the way as quickly as possible. Well, medical treatments of tonsil stones also exist in different forms among which you will find something that suits you.
If there are no bacteria, there can be no tonsil stones. Disarming the bacteria that cause tonsil stones is akin to stopping further development of tonsil stones. You can do this with antibiotics like amoxicillin. However, antibiotics are short term treatment for tonsil stones as they do particularly kill off the bacteria and they can even build resistance to antibiotics in the long run. The smart thing to do is first use antibiotics to disarm the bacteria and then use some other mode of treatment to get rid of tonsil stones.
This is a pretty viable option for getting rid of tonsil stones. It involves a surgical procedure and absolutely removes tonsils. However, tonsillectomy should be the last course of action when everything else has failed or tonsil stone is making life difficult to live for patients. There is also partial tonsillectomy which is less painful and easier to recover from. Tonsillectomy is the removal of the tonsils or one of both by surgical procedure. It is a painful procedure and recovery time is longer with complete tonsillectomy. Local anesthetic is used to numb pain. Tonsillectomy is done with the coblation procedure and is easier for children than adults because children recover faster than adults.
This is the use of laser treatment to remove tonsil stones. Cryptolysis is not as painful as tonsillectomy and it is easier to recover from than that. Moreover, you still have your tonsil tissues as a bonus. Within a week, patients who undergo this [procedure can continue to live life as normal but the downside of this is that tonsil stones can reappear. It is advisable that whoever has had laser treatment for tonsil stones should take preventive measures seriously to avoid getting another one.
If you decide to go through the medical route, you need to talk to your doctor about which of these options is safest for you. If you are treating yourself and there seems to be no noticeable improvement, please, consult your doctor as well.