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What are Tonsilloliths or Tonsil Stones?

By HERWriter
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What are Tonsil Stones?

Tonsil stones (or tonsilloliths) are white or off-white balls that appear on the tonsils. While part of the upper respiratory tract, doctors believe that the tonsils also play a role in the immune system, by preventing bacteria and other particles from entering the body (although those who have had their tonsils removed show no increase in susceptibility to infections or illnesses than those who have their tonsils).

Causes, Symptoms, and Prevention of Tonsil Stones

Sometimes food particles, skin cells, bacteria, etc., doesn't get flushed away or coughed out and can build up in the folds of the tonsils eventually resulting in the calcified (hardened) little balls - usually no bigger than a pea.

As with most conditions, not every person will present with the same causal factors, but doctors and patients report very similar experiences with the development of tonsil stones. While the stones themselves are not harmful to the tonsils, they are often the main contributors to bad breath. In very bad cases, bad breath or a sour taste returns an hour or two after brushing.

If tonsil stones appear following a sickness, in all likelihood as the illness finishes its natural cycles, the tonsil stones will disappear. If they occur outside of any particular illness, then it's time to look at treatment and prevention.

There are several ways of preventing and treating tonsilloliths. It's really a matter of trial and error to find a method that works for you, but here are some suggestions:

1) Canadian Tea Capsules (also known as E-Tea (Essiac Tea) Capsules): This recipe is based an old Ojibwa formula that acts as a natural detoxifier and has been reported by some users to keep tonsilloliths from developing.

2) Avoid alcohol and products containing alcohol, including mouthwashes. Alcohol increases the alkalinity levels in a person's mouth, in which bacteria will thrive. Use a non-alcoholic, sugar-free mouthwash. One common natural rinse uses baking soda and witch hazel. The sugar in many mouthwashes also contributes to prime breeding ground for bacteria.

Add a Comment3 Comments

I had fecal breath odor for YEARS. Talked to many doctors who I am sure thought that I was crazy....I finally had a friend who suffers too, send me a eBook he bought 5 or 6 months ago he ask me how his breath smelt and I didn't smell a thing. He said the eBook amongst much else had him stop eating dairy food/ soft drinks and coffee/tea. So I’m like reading it and doing all the stuff it says to do. Thinking this has to be bull. But after a few days my tongue started turning red and felt nice. I worked up the courage to ask a friend how my breath smelt and hes like I don’t smell anything. Now I’m thinking all those years of humiliation and I could have solved it ffs! There a site about it called BadhalitosisbreathCom When I read the site I felt sorry for the guy as he clearly had a real tough time with his bad breath, which pretty much ruined his school years. At lest he found a way to beat his bad breath and is letting others know how. Post this every! where to help people!! Thanks

May 12, 2010 - 1:17am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to aroma)

It's funny how long I went as well with horrible breath. I had almost the same exact experience with tonsil stones and not knowing what they were. After a while I breath tested myself with multiple people to make sure the results were accurate but my breath was fine! My end result was exactly the same, I had stopped eating dairy but the information came from a different source and it was free this guy Josh at http://www.tonsil-help.com helped me out personally with my questions and everything. Highly recommended to visit

February 2, 2011 - 1:00am
HERWriter (reply to Anonymous)

Thank you for the link and for sharing your experience.


February 2, 2011 - 7:36am
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.