Doctor insights on:
Does Everyone Get Tonsil Stones
Try a Water Pik.: An oral irrigator or dental water jet device such as a Water Pik can be used to rinse out stones without traumatizing the tonsil tissues. Use it in its gentlest setting to prevent gagging. In difficult cases, see an ENT doctor. Avoid using objects such as Q-tips or your finger to manually express stones from the tonsil, as this can cause more serious pain and predispose to infection. ...Read more
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. ...Read more
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. ...Read more
It's not the tonsil: The tonsils create tonsil stones or tonsilths because of the crypts in them that trap bacteria and food (see my other taps). If you continue to get tonsil stones you may have residual tonsil tissue (possible but unlikely) but you can also get tonsil stones or tonsilths in the lingual tonsil which is at the very back part of your tongue. Debris also collects in the vallecula - above voice box. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Yes.: If these stones are a recurring problem, you certainly can have the tonsils removed. ...Read more
Tonsilloliths or : tonsil stones can form in the nooks of the tonsils, esp. when these r exaggerated w/ tonsillitis. These nooks can then become attractive homes to bacteria, dead cells, and mucous, which when trapped in a pocket, calcify. While some folks need tonsillectomy to resolve repeated infxns & stones, others may have their infxn/inflammation resolve spontaneously & not recur or lead 2 further stones. ...Read more
Big tonsils: Probably some people have big tonsils, and there are bacteria and inflammatory responses by one's own white blood cells in the holes (crypts) on the tonsils' surfaces... thus leading to lumps of stuff we know as tonsil stones. An ENT doctor can help, but if medical treatment doesn't make things well enough for a patient's desires, the next option may be removing the tonsils. ...Read more
What causes tonsil stones? I get up to 4 or 5 very small ones sometimes per tonsil every week or two.
I keep getting tonsil stones and I try to clean them out as much as I can but now I have 2 holes were I get stones on the same side and it hurts?
Tonsilar crypts: The holes you get in the tonsils are unfortunately common and will often capture food that gets stuck in there, turning into "tonsil stones" and causing bad breath and irritation. Salt water gargles or gargling with mouth wash may help, but ultimately, a referral with an ENT surgeon for tonsillectomy may be needed. Best wishes. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
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