U.S. doctors online nowAsk doctors free
A 39-year-old member asked:

Are tonsil stones serious?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Magalie Nelson
ENT - Head & Neck Surgery - Pediatric 22 years experience
tonsil stones: The tonsils have multiple holes that can can get filled with bacteria, mucus and food debris. Overtime the debris can harden and form the so called tonsil stones. They are not serious but they can cause throat discomfort and bad breath.
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 45 years experience
Trivial: They're actually mostly made of keratin. There's a lot of misinformation about them. They can be smelly and uncomfortable. They're easy to remove if you've got steady hands. Get a penlight and a mirror and half-unbend a paper clip. You'll get good at it. Infection/injury risk is minor. Water pick is even better. If it's truly a nuisance, a otolaryngologist can laser-resurface your tonsils.

Similar questions

A 42-year-old female asked:

What are tonsil stones?

4 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. David Kam
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 37 years experience
Tonsilliths: They are bacterial colonies that form in tonsillar crypts. A common bacteria is actinomyces. It can give you a foreign body sensation in throat and halitosis.
Last updated Mar 8, 2018

Disclaimer:

Content on HealthTap (including answers) should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and interactions on HealthTap do not create a doctor-patient relationship. Never disregard or delay professional medical advice in person because of anything on HealthTap. Call your doctor or 911 if you think you may have a medical emergency.