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A 43-year-old member asked:

why do i get tonsil stones often?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Thomas Costello
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 22 years experience
Cryptic tonsils: As some people get older, their tonsils lose their smooth surface and become pitted or cryptic. The purpose of the tonsils is to sample debris (food as well as cellular debris) to help determine if is dangerous or not to the body. It then compacts the debris and gets rid of it. This happens in every person with tonsils. However, if the tonsils are cryptic, the debris is larger and noticeable.
Dr. Joshua Rosenthal
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 18 years experience
Crypts: You probably have large tonsil crypts (or pockets) where debris accumulates. Consider using salt water gargles or an alcohol free mouth wash. There are some office procedures that a very few ent's can perform to help such as radiofrequency cryptolysis. If you are interested in this you will definitely have to ask around.

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A 41-year-old member asked:

Are tonsil stones dangerous? Is there any health risk associated with tonsil stones?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mike Bowman
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 19 years experience
Not really: They commonly cause bad breath, and can reflect chronic tonsillitis. Removal of the tonsils will solve the problem, but isn't warranted unless the problems are severe. They can be removed manually, but they almost always recur.
A 40-year-old member asked:

If you have tonsil stones, can you still speak?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Anifat Balogun
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 29 years experience
Tonsil Stones: Tonsil stones, calculi (tonsilloliths) are clusters of small calcified debris, made up of dead cells, food material, bacteria and mucus that become trapped in the nook and crannies of the tonsils. They do not affect the vocal cords, so you should be able to speak normally with tonsilloliths.
A 34-year-old member asked:

What are tonsil stones made of?

4 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Russell Faust
Dr. Russell Faust answered
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 29 years experience
ICKY STUFF: Tonsil "stones" are comprised of dead mucosal cells from the lining of the oral cavity, from microscopic food particles, and from bacteria - usually in the form of "biofilm". Based on dna sequencing studies, we found more than 100 separate species of bacteria in tonsil stones in a group of 50 children.
CA
A 40-year-old member asked:

What can cause tonsil stones?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mike Bowman
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 19 years experience
Eating: Tonsil stones (i.e. Tonsilliths) are collections of food and debris which get trapped in the tonsils. This material gets infected usually becomes foul smelling. Some tonsils have more nooks and crannies in which to collect this debris, which makes the stones larger and/or more numerous. If removed, tonsilliths usually will recur. If severe, tonsillectomy will cure the problem. Best wishes.
A 40-year-old member asked:

What is the cure for tonsil stones?

7 doctor answers16 doctors weighed in
Dr. Russell Faust
Dr. Russell Faust answered
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 29 years experience
None that I know of,: ... But, taking a daily probiotic preparation has been demonstrated to benefit the immune system, and to reduce upper respiratory infections (uri's) - reduced frequency, duration, and severity - in randomized prospective clinical trials. Probiotics have also been found to reduce ear infections in children. I recommend them for my patients with tonsil stones, and tonsillitis, with great benefit.

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Last updated May 29, 2020

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