The tonsils are small gland like structures that are located on the lateral parts of the throat. In the past, if your tonsils got swollen or infection was present, the first choice of treatment was surgical removal. Today, it is well known that the tonsils represent the first barrier of protection against infection, whether we are talking about the protection of the digestive system or the one of the respiratory airways.
The white spots present on tonsils are actually represented by pus. This happens when there is an infectious agent, such as bacteria or virus and the immune system sends the white blood cells into the battle. As the white blood cells die in order to kill the infectious agent, white spots appear on the tonsils. These spots are actually represented by mucus and calcium and they might require both medical treatment and home care remedies.
Often times, a sore throat with swollen tonsils is accompanied by fever. In other cases, it happens that debris accumulates in the tiny pockets of the tonsils (tonsil crypts), leading to tonsil stones. However, in the case of a white spot on tonsil, for 40% of the patients, the symptoms will subside in three days and for the rest in one week.
Causes of White Spots on Tonsils
These are the most common causes that can lead to the appearance of white spots on tonsils:
- Tonsil inflammation (tonsillitis) – this can be caused by a bacteria or virus, being accompanied by headaches, fever and a stiff neck as additional symptoms.
- Tonsil stones – as it was already explained, tonsil stones can appear as white spots on the tonsils, as the debris in the tonsil crypts (bacteria, mucus, small particles of food and dead cells) becomes infected.
- Oral thrush – this is a viral infection (with yeast) and it is aggravated by the lack of immunity and a high intake of sugary foods.
- Sore throat – this is also known as a strep infection and, besides the white spots on the tonsils, the patient will suffer from swollen lymph nodes and high fever.
- Mononucleosis – this is a viral infection and the symptoms resemble the ones of flu, the patient experiencing fatigue, fever and headaches. In more serious cases, the patient will also have swollen lymph nodes and extensive rash on the body.
Treatment for White Spots on Tonsils
These are the most common courses of treatment for white spots on the tonsils and the underlying medical conditions:
- Before recommending an actual treatment for the white spots on the tonsils, the doctor will take a sample and analyze it in order to determine whether the infection is caused by a virus or bacteria
- In case of bacterial infections, you will be recommended broad-spectrum antibiotics. If there is a high fever, such as is with strep throat, you will be indicated to take more specific spectrum antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medication for the fever and inflammation
- In case of viral infection, the doctor will recommend anti-viral medication
- Tonsillectomy is recommended in the situation when the tonsils are frequently infected or inflamed. There are patients whose tonsils swell so much that the make breathing difficult. The surgery is also recommended when the white spots on the tonsils are present for longer periods of time and the infection in the body does not respond to oral medication
- If you have suffered surgery for tonsils removal, then you should know that you will fully recover in one or two weeks but you will have a sore throat. You will have to avoid foots that are spicy or greasy, as these can irritate the recently operated area but other from that there are no side-effects you should be worried about
Pictures of White Spot on Tonsils
Pictures collection of white spot on tonsil…
Home remedies can help with white spots on the tonsils as well. These are a few suggestions you can take into consideration and they will help you with tonsil stones as well:
- Gargling – this is one of the best home remedies that will help you keep the area clean and free of infection. In order to obtain the best results, you have to mix warm water with salt and gargle at least two or three times a day
- Warm fluids – when we say warm fluids, we are talking about tea and not caffeine-based drinks. The latter will only contribute to dehydration, making you recovery late, as opposed to tea or chicken broth which are great. Tea can keep your throat moist, while chicken broth contains a lot of vitamins and minerals that will help you fight any infection present in the body
- Using air vaporizers and room humidifiers will guarantee that you breathe in air that is moist. Dry air has the tendency to aggravate sore throats and prolong the presence of white spots on the tonsils.