white spots on tonsils
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White spots on tonsils

Every inch of the human body is a testimony of their health. An abnormality in any part of your body can provide lots of information about your health. A lot of people would definitely panic if they see white spots on their tonsils. Well, this is expected since no one wants to see white spots on their throat. Tonsils play a very important role and that is maintaining the immune system of the body, basically on the respiratory system.

What you should know is that tonsils are not just part of your body but they are also essential in fighting against the virus and bacteria creating infections. They are able to do this because they contain cells that efficiently trap infection which is trying to enter your body. When these germs are resisted, they may end up infecting the tonsils causing painful and swollen tonsils.

What are white spots on tonsils?

White spots appear on the inside of your throat and are mostly caused by an infection. The best would be visiting your doctor who will easily identify the problem and diagnose the cause. Although to most people, just seeing white spots on their tonsils is alarming even though most of the time, there is no cause for alarm.

The tonsils are located at the back of your throat and if you want to see them, you can use your mirror and just look into the mirror with your mouth wide open. If your tonsils are sick, they will appear red, swollen or sore. But when it comes to white spots, everything is totally different.

However, the fact that white spots on tonsils seem to be straightforward, if left untreated, they may get worse and result in further complications that may at times lead to serious injuries. The major points that may warrant or warn you of white spots on tonsils include but not limited to swollen glands on the neck, a dry and sore throat, white spots at the back of the throat, unpleasant taste in the mouth and enlarged tonsils.

Causes of white spots and possible remedies

1. Strep throat

They lead to white spots on tonsils. Strep throats are the initial signals that can make you know there is a problem. Streptococcus is a bacterium causing infection and turns to the reason for the occurrence of white spots on your tonsil. If this continues, it will further lead to tonsillitis which is more painful to the person. You can be able to point out a strep throat though white or yellow spots on the throat or tonsils, a bright red throat on the outside and high fever.

This type of infection usually occurs quite suddenly without prior symptoms such as cold or flu. You may realize that swallowing have turned out to be difficult as well. Natural remedies for a strep throat infection are very good but only if the infection is in a mild or moderate lever. It is important to know that a series infection of Streptococcus can lead to more complicated diseases such as rheumatic fever or kidney disease if not properly treated.


You can use cayenne pepper on to get rid of the mild infections like white spots on tonsils. Cayenne pepper contains capsaicin which is a strong ingredient of curing throat infections such as strep throat. There are even studies which have shown that capsaicin can help reduce pain and calm down the nerves. Mix a half cup of coconut oil and a teaspoon of cayenne pepper. If you have capsaicin paste, apply it on the skin of the throat since it absorbs quite well and helps in curing the swollen lymph.

2. Tonsillitis

Tonsillitis is also a common reason for white spots on the tonsils. The cause of tonsillitis is when a certain bacteria or viral infection acts as an active component for the tonsils to be infected by it. For you to know if you are suffering from tonsillitis, the main symptoms are a white or yellow coating on the inflamed tonsils, experiencing problems while swallowing, having white patches on the throat, sore throat, enlarged lymph nodes and instances of several headaches.


If the bacterial infection has not caused a serious effect, you can use home remedies to cure them such as salt water gargle. Echinacea tea is also good in treating tonsils with white spots and general boasting of your immune system. To have a delicious Echinacea tea for easy consumption, you need to add 1 inch chopped ginger piece in hot water, cover it and leave it for a while. After it has cooled down, boost its medicinal value with some honey and lemon. For effective results, have this awesome drink for two to three times a day.

A good diet can also be of great help if you have been affected by tonsillitis quite often. As you take the home remedies, maintain a diet for a few days. For about five days, a liquid diet is ideal. Fruit juices are known to boost your immune system and fight any infection. For that reason, drink water and orange juice only until the symptoms causing pain to go down. In the upcoming days, shift to consuming fruits and gradually start adding solid foods to your daily meal.

Ensure your meals contain a healthy diet of fresh vegetables, fruits, nuts, and grains. This will boost your body immune system and prevent you from the chances of infection re-building in your body. If there are things to avoid, that should be too many hot drinks like coffee, tea, and carbonated drinks. Did you know that ice cream can calm a sore throat? It can as it is easy to swallow it at a go. You should also avoid sour and spicy foods at all cost. Foods such as fried foods and hot sauce disturb the throat which can lead to more pain.

3. Tonsilloliths

Tonsilloliths or tonsil stones are caused by whitish stone like bumps that appear on the tonsils. These white stones embedded within the tonsils are not actually a problem not unless when they are accompanied by a throat infection which can also cause fever. White spots on your throat are formed as a result of mucus, bacteria and dead cells get trapped. Even though white spots on the throat are a common symptom of tonsilloliths, other common symptoms are a sore throat and bad breath as a result of the bacteria. You may also experience other side effects like ear pain and difficulty in swallowing.


Salt water gargle is a very effective measure and it will kill the bacteria and heal your throat from the painful infection.

4. Oral thrush

This is a fungal infection that causes white patches on the tonsils. This, unfortunately, affects both your tongue and the back of the mouth. When there is an imbalance of good and bad bacteria, the yeast infection causes the oral thrush. Basically, oral thrush is caused by the heavy course of antibiotics. That’s because antibiotics destroy the balance of microorganisms in the body and this leads to the overgrowing of yeast which ends up affecting your mouth.


Did you know that coconut oil is a good natural antifungal? It is and it helps to remove the white spots from the tonsils and from the back of the throat. For you to achieve an effective remedy of coconut oil, mix one or two drops of clove or cinnamon oil with a tablespoon of coconut oil. Swish the mixture for a minute and avoid swallowing it though. After that, spit out the mixture and rinse your mouth with warm water and brush the teeth. You can repeat the procedure until the white patches heal properly.

5. Mononucleosis

This type of infection leads to infection at the back of the mouth. This leads to the formation of white spots on the tonsils. Mononucleosis is commonly referred to as mono and it is sometimes transmitted by the virus known as Epstein-Barr virus. It is normally created amongst teens through saliva in their mouth. Although it is difficult to differentiate mono and strep throat, the symptoms of mono include tonsils and lymph nodes, sore throat, loss of appetite, fatigue and pain under the left ribs. White spots on tonsils are caused by a sore throat. For babies who are affected by oral thrush and are still breastfeeding, the condition will spread to the mother’s nipple as well. Immediate attention of both pediatrician and oncologist to handle these cases.


To recover faster from the virus, you need to drink loads of fluids and take plenty of rest. For anyone experiencing abdominal pain, it is good to avoid lifting heavy materials to avoid damaging the spleen. In addition to this, gargle salt water to reduce the pain of a sore throat. Do not strain with excessive pain, you can use doctor’s referred painkillers.

6. Leukoplakia

This is a much less major cause of white spots on the tonsils as compared to others. Mostly it affects people with smoking tendencies or those who chew tobacco. People with poorly fitting dentures are also affected. Although leukoplakia is mostly mild, it is linked with oral cancer. People with a weak immune system can be affected by Epstein-Barr virus which creates oral bairy leukoplakia. This in return causes white spots on the throat, mouth, tongue and other areas of the mouth.

7. Tonsillar cancer

Tonsillar cancer is commonly known as squamous cell carcinoma and it is a type of cancer that affects the tonsils usually causing white patches on the tonsils. The major symptoms are the sores at the back of the throat that do not usually heal. However, a sore or white patch should be the only symptom you look up for tonsillar cancer because there are others such as pain in the mouth, severe ear pain, blood in the saliva, lump in the neck and persistent sore throat.

Doctor’s appointment due to white spots

Most of the time, white spots on tonsils disappear on their own or after using some of the above-mentioned home remedies. However, if this is not the case, the only option you have is seeking medical advice. It is also important to know what to expect. If it is your first time, the physician will perfume a simple test of looking at your throat. What follows next will be a brief physical examination and questions about your personal health and symptoms. If your doctor is not 100 percent sure, then he/she will order a lab test.

Among the things you can do prior to the doctor’s visit is noting down the questions you want to ask your doctor since you will have a limited amount of time with the doctor during the consultation and physical examination. You can also take photos since white spots on your tonsils might get better or worse as the days go by and document the condition. Whatever you decide to do, seeking medical advice is the priority.
Photo source: James Heilman, MD @ Wikipedia

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