What causes tonsillitis?

Tonsil inflammation. Tonsillitis is a general term that describes tonsil inflammation. It can be "acute" when there is a sudden onset, active, often more severe infection, sometimes caused by "strep" or other bacteria/viruses. It can be "chronic" when the inflammation is on-going for long periods of time and causes a sore throat and swollen glands, white cheesy stuff coming out of the tonsils, etc.
Infection. The tonsils can be infected with bacterial, such as strep or with a virus.
Tonsillitis. The most common causes of tonsillitis are the cold viruses (adenovirus, rhinovirus, etc). Bacterial infections of the tonsils can be caused by beta streptococcus (strep. Throat). Epstein barr virus (cause of mono) can also cause tonsillitis.

Related Questions

What causes allergic tonsillitis? Which are specific allergens?

Allergy. This is the body's reaction to materials it finds a necessity to eliminate. When you breathe in an allergen the reaction with antibodies creates an inflammatory response. The allergens may differ from person to person and that is why detailed testing by an allergist physician is necessary. Read more...
Tonsils not allergic. Tonsillar tissue is lymphatic in origin and function covered by mucosa. As such the mucosal lining could swell with any acute allergic reaction involving the mouth. However, I am unaware of any allergic reaction that would cause isolated acute tonsillar inflammation (tonsilliitis). Read more...

What could cause chronic tonsillitis and 1 swollen lymph node on left under chin near neck? Dr sees no abnormal blood work/virus. Ocurring for 4+ yrs.

Chronic tonsillitis. Chronic tonsillitis is a very common condition that affects a lot of our patients. There are bacterial causes which need antibiotics for resolution and viral causes which require symptomatic care. If all studies were done and there is no mono then conseder a tonsellectomy. Your doctor will guide you into the best decision. Good luck. Read more...
Need Tonsillectomy. If you have chronic Tonsillitis and recurrent Flare up with LN on one side you should consult ENT. They usually recommend tonsillectomy. Read more...
Chronic Tonsillitis. You may have chronic tonsillitis because of dripping sinuses post nasally which are irritating your sinuses. Your dripping sinuses may be part of an allergy problem. Consult an allergist for consultation. Read more...

What bacteria can cause tonsillitis/sore throat?

Streptococcus pyogen. According to myo clinic , strep throat, which is caused by a bacterium known as streptococcus pyogenes, or group a streptococcus whooping cough, a highly contagious respiratory tract infection diphtheria, a serious respiratory illness that's rare in industrialized nations but is more common in developing countries. Read more...