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Doctor insights on: Will It Hurt Me If I Swallow Tonsil Stones Do They Ever Go Away

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Will it hurt me if I swallow tonsil stones? Do they ever go away

Will it hurt me if I swallow tonsil stones? Do they ever go away

No and yes: Tonsilliths or tonsil stones are an accumulation of debris in the crypts of the tonsils. They cause discomfort and foul breath. They can be expelled with blunt end of a toothbrush or like object. If swallowed, they are readily inactivated by the acid in the stomach. This should not be harmful. Good oral hygiene, gargles with most gargle solutions will help. You may end up with tonsils out. ...Read more

Dr. Austina Cho
290 doctors shared insights

Tonsil Stones (Definition)

Tonsil stones are white or yellow globs of foul-smelling mucus and bacteria that collect in the tonsils near the back of the throat. Tonsil stones are not dangerous, but ...Read more


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I have one swollen, painful tonsil w tonsil stones. It hurts to swallow. Should I see a doctor?

I have one swollen, painful tonsil w tonsil stones. It hurts to swallow. Should I see a doctor?

Yes: Yes, it is infected and you need an antibiotic. Although it might be viral, the likelyhood of bacterial infection is so high I treat cases like yours with either Clindamycin or penicillin. ...Read more

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My right tonsils bigger then the other there's no pain and I can swallow fine but I can't see my left tonsil I have had tonsil stones b4 nd postnasal?

Asymmetric tonsils: What you are describing is asymmetric tonsils. This really needs to be evaluated. At your age, it is likely a result of infection or tonsil stones. It could also possibly be due to simply the perception of asymmetry. More concerning is the rare possibility of a mass within the tonsil that is enlarged. Evaluation is necessary and oftentimes, tonsillectomy is required to rule out a mass. ...Read more

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At what point do you consider tonsillectomy? I've been having tonsil stones the last month and difficulties swallowing. Post nasal drip associated?

At what point do you consider tonsillectomy? I've been having tonsil stones the last month and difficulties swallowing. Post nasal drip associated?

Insurance won't pay: Ent surgeons simply don't do tonsillectomies at the rate they did 30-40 years ago. In my non-surgical physician opinion. Your symptoms are not anywhere severe enough to have this done either. Tonsilar calculi (singular: calculus) are basically deposits of calcium and phosphorus in the tonsillar mkatrix. Laser, curetting and several other methods including tonsillectomy are options. ...Read more

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Can tonsil stones cause a dirt-type taste in the back of your throat more so when swallowing for 1+ years constantly? (just about every day)

Can tonsil stones cause a dirt-type taste in the back of your throat more so when swallowing for 1+ years constantly? (just about every day)

Yes: Yes they can. You need to consult with an ENT doctor about your tonsils. Sometimes a course of an antibiotic like Clindamycin can be helpful in changing the bacteria of your tonsils and decreasing the odor and taste. Sometimes we have to remove the tonsils. ...Read more

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Strep throat and wanted 2 know how long it'll take to swallow comfortably again & are dairy products ok 2 eat? How to remove tonsil stones as well?

Strep throat and wanted 2 know how long it'll take to swallow comfortably again & are dairy products ok 2 eat? How to remove tonsil stones as well?

Strep throat: 19 year old lady with strep throat. Please see your physician ASAP for a rapid strep and antibiotics. 90% of sore throat is caused by a virus but if you have a lot of pain with swallowing you should be evaluated. If strep throat is not treated with the appropriate antibiotics, it can lead to serious sequelae like Scarlet Fever and Rheumatic Fever. Please see your MD &ENT specialist. Thank you. ...Read more

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Feels like something stuck in back of tongue/throat 3 weeks. No tonsil stones visible. No pain, trouble swallowing. 25 yrs. Female?

Feels like something stuck in back of tongue/throat 3 weeks. No tonsil stones visible. No pain, trouble swallowing. 25 yrs. Female?

ENT: Unfortunately if you cannot see with tongue depressor anything unusual, then the only next step that will help would be to have an exam by an ear nose throat doctor. ...Read more

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I have tonsil stones. White smelly things on my right tonsil. I don't get them a lot and they go away in few days. Should I get my tonsils removed?

Probably not: This is a very common problem. Most people can manage the condition by frequent gargling with listerine or hydrogen peroxide, gently brushing over the area with a soft brush, or using a water pik to dislodge them. Sometimes the tonsils may become chronically infected, painful, or swollen. Then it may be time to consider removal. You should see an otolaryngologist and discuss. ...Read more

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Been struggling with my tonsils since January. The problem is tonsil Stones and many burps. Will my disgusting burps go away if I remove my tonsils?

Tonsils: Sorry you are struggling so long but you MUST see an Ear, Nose, and Throat specialist as soon as possible. Please have your Primary doctor refer you.
Please let me know how things go. ...Read more

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Should I go to the doctor and if so what will they tell me. Tonsil stones are worse and hurt so bad?

Need more details: How long have you had this? How often? Have you been seen before? Do you have a fever? ...Read more

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I have developed more than 10 holes in my tonsils in the past month. Tonsil stones & blood are coming out. Doesn't hurt but is irritating. Any help?

Gargle: Sometimes gargling can dislodge the debris in your tonsils. If you are trying to push out the stones, you may be causing the bleeding. If you are not touching the tonsils, and they are bleeding, make an appt to see an ENT doctor. ...Read more

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New to tonsil stones first time it hurt I had 2 small one now I noticed there is more cming out but no pain or smell I do not understand?

New to tonsil stones first time it hurt I had 2 small one now I noticed there is more cming out but no pain or smell I do not understand?

Tonsillolith: Tonsillar stones are formed from debris that get into the tonsillar crypts such as dead cells bacteria and mucus which then harden. It may or may not cause symptoms. Warm salt water gargle works well for this condition but if symptomatic a visit to your dental or ENT specialist may be waranted ...Read more

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Please help me! I have very painful tonsil stones and they hurt so bad! What are ways to get rid of them without surgery? Please help me!

Please help me! I have very painful tonsil stones and they hurt so bad! What are ways to get rid of them without surgery? Please help me!

Pain: You must have your Primary doctor refer you to an Ear, Nose, and Throat specialist to evaluate the tonsils.
Yes, there is pain but the doctors can control this without too much concern.

Please let me know how things went. ...Read more

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I've had I Lil red bump in my tonsil for months and now there is 3....what could this be. .they don't look like tonsil stones and they don't hurt?

Tonsil "bumps": A low grade infection — maybe draining a gum or tooth, but painless sores are always a red flag and it would be best to consult an ENT specialist if they don't clear up soon. ...Read more

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What do ENT docs use to dislodge tonsil stones? Will it hurt?

What do ENT docs use to dislodge tonsil stones? Will it hurt?

UnderLocalAnesthesia: Small stones are treated at home with salt water gargles or removed with picks or swabs and antibiotics. Large stones arte surgically removed after using a local anesthetic and there will be no pain. In children sometimes general anesthetic is used. Discuss with your ENT what treatment you will need if you have symptomatic tonsillar stones ...Read more

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4 huge tonsil stones just came out, they were stuck behind the flap that covers my tonsil. My tonsil now hurts very bad. Is this normal?

Not nrmal: See oralfascial surgeon to see significance, can block ducts and cause pain, swelling, suck on lemon drops to keep saliva flowing ...Read more

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4 huge tonsil stones just came out, they were stuck behind the flap that covers my tonsil. My tonsil now hurts very bad. Is this normal?

No: Having tonsillar stones is not normal, nor is pain in the tonsils. It would be prudent to consult an ENT specialist. ...Read more

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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 more

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Tonsil stones, white stuff on tonsils, my tonsils are swollen, but they don't hurt very much and bad breath I haven't been with anyone in 5 months hlp?

Tonsil stones: The stones may dislodge by themselves, or by rinsing/gargling with salt water. However, stones are common with people who have chronic tonsillitis, so you should check with an ENT specialist. ...Read more

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I have one swollen tonsil, and my ear hurts but no other symptoms. It feels like I have something stuck in my tonsil, but I don't see tonsil stones.?

I have one swollen tonsil, and my ear hurts but no other symptoms. It feels like I have something stuck in my tonsil, but I don't see tonsil stones.?

Swollen tonsil: One tonsil larger than the other is reason for an exam. It could be a sign of a peritonsillar abscess, inflammatory or neoplastic process. It needs to be evaluated, followed and possibly biopsied drained or removed. ...Read more