When you look in the mirror do you notice little white spots on the back of your throat?
If so, then you most likely are searching through books and websites trying to self diagnose these white spots, fearing the worst. It could be some sort of strep throat. It could be “thrush”- a yeast infection in your mouth. Or it could be tonsilloliths.
Tonsilloliths or “tonsil stones” are little white or yellow balls of built up food, dead white blood cells and other particles in your mouth.
Ask yourself this: – Do you have a sore throat that accompanies the white spots on your throat? – Do you have trouble swallowing or does it feel like something is stuck on the back of your throat? – And, do you have really bad breath?
If you have answered Yes to any of the above, then those white spots on your throat are most likely tonsil stones. Tonsil stones occur in some people and not in others. Experts suggest that overactive salivary glands, an excess of oral bacteria, larger tonsils and bigger tonsil crypts, or crevices, all play a factor in tonsil stones.
Tonsil stones are not life threatening or even dangerous. They are just annoying as they can be irritable and also cause embarrassment. They have quite a strong unpleasant odour caused by the build-up of bacteria. Tonsil stones, similar to tarter, will continue to grow and harden with time. While some tonsil stones are only the size of a pea, others can grow as big as a marble.
Removing tonsil stones can be quite difficult. Some people simply sneeze or flex their throat and these white spots will remove themselves. Others have to use a toothbrush, a Q-tip or their finger to scrape at the tonsil stones. Others opt to have their tonsils surgically removed or lasered if the problem becomes too much.
If you are prone to these annoying white spots on your throat, then you need to ensure that you practice good oral hygiene. Adding baking soda to your toothpaste can also combat against the bad odour as well as chewing on mint, thyme or parsley leaves during the day.
And keep in mind that those yucky white spots on your throat as more common than you may think. You are not alone.