25 answers

Weird White Chunks in Tonsils - Sorry Its Kinda Gross

HI Ladies,
I've had white chunks coming out of my tonsils for several months now. Little lumps of slightly squishy white stuff - I can get them out with the end of a Q-tip - about one chunk every other day - mostly from my right side, occasionally from the left. I went to my Dr. and he put me on antibiotics - but it didnt help at all. (That was about 1 month ago) Still getting chunks. He said he'd refer me to an ENT, but that it would probably mean a tonsillectomy - which is apparently a pretty painful/long recovery time surgery. I dont have the time to be laid up recovering from surgery. And I dont like pain.

Has anyone ever dealt with this or know what it could be? Is a tonsillectomy my only choice? The chunks dont really bother me, its just gross!

Thanks,
D.

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Wow! Who knew? - Apparently all of you! Thanks, I wish I'd asked a long time ago so I could've quit worrying about cancer or whatever else my mind was coming up with! I'll go with gargling with peroxide a bit and see if that helps any. But at least I'll quit worrying about it.

Featured Answers

I get that all the time! I asked my dr about it about 5 years ago and they said everyone get those. It's just left over food and other "stuff" that gets stuck over time and and it just builds up until it comes out. It's no big deal.

1 mom found this helpful

My husband had those. They are tonsil stones. They were causing him bad breath and apparently snoring. He would get so infected and swollen. He had his tonsils and adenoids out. It was tough on him for about 2 weeks. I think it was worth it, but he says he would never do that again.

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Tonsil stones. Caused by mucus, drainage and stuff that clog around your tonsils. I had them once in my late teens for a few months, then they went away.
My 19 yr. old has just started to get them this fall, so we've done research.

First of all, they say don't get your tonsils removed just to get rid of the stones. It's more dangerous for adults. A tonsillectomy is your worst choice.
And I can see why antibiotics didn't work---they are not an infection---they are buildup.

What we are trying with my son is to stop the nasal drip. He is taking antihistamines for allergies and we hope that we reduce the drainage. He is also gargling with mouthwash or saline solution twice a day to help clear the stuff from the back of the throat before it collects.

P.S. Going to disagree with the person who said go the the ENT. Going to be expensive and they won't do much for tonsil stones. You can treat these yourself and save the $$$.
Good luck.

5 moms found this helpful

Those are tonsil stones. They are very common and unless it bothers you usually don't require treatment. They can be a cause of bad breath (which is why some people opt for a tonsillectomy) but other than that they often don't have any serious symptoms.
I would go ahead and get an opinion from an ENT - just because you go, doesn't mean you have to agree to get surgery.
Good luck!

4 moms found this helpful

I would suggest the warm salt water gargle or the peroxide/water gargle.

3 moms found this helpful

Yes! How can doctors be so ignorant? Antibiotics won't help at all. You have tonsil stones, or you have cryptic tonsils that get filled up with smelly white goo. I have much experience removing this from my daughter's tonsils. Have you ever smelled it? The worst.

Google tonsil stones or tonsilloths, or tonsiliths, there are various spellings; also google cryptic tonsils. Both things are matter that builds up in and around your tonsils. There are videos of people getting their tonsils cleaned out, if you have intestinal fortitude.

You can flush tonsil stones out with a waterpick; and if you have cryptic tonsils (it's a slit in your tonsil), you can push the stuff out by pushing around it with a q-tip. The long ones you can get from your doctor's office work best.

To minimize the buildup, gargle frequently, making sure the mouthwash gets back there. I was just discussing this with an ENT last week.

Nothing to worry about, just gross.

3 moms found this helpful

I've dealt with tonsil stones on and off since high school. I have chronic post-nasal drip, and I hear this can make it worse. I usually notice them more when I have a sore throat or a cold.

I've tried q-tips to get them out, but the fuzzy ends makes me cough. I've tried the wooden end of a cotton applicator, but the wood is too rough and I've caused my tonsils to bleed. The best thing I found for it is the smooth rounded end of a thin eyeshadow brush. I just take it and push around on my tonsil until the stone comes out. Gross!

I know a woman who had her tonsils out as an adult, and it was horrible for her. I'd avoid a tonsillectomy if you possibly can.

2 moms found this helpful

My ENT calls it throat cheese. Gross, sorry! I get it often. It's really gross and smells really badly. Makes my throat itchy. And sometimes I can feel it in there. The only perm cure is getting your tonsils out. I find that it comes in phases. Or if my allergies are bad or if it's just a bad week.

I'd see an ENT just to be certain that you don't NEED your tonsils out. I actually planned to get my tonsils out but got pregnant instead. I don't blame you for not wanting the pain. I hear it takes 2 fell weeks to recover.

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Do you gargle with warm(almost hot) salt water everyday? Try doing it and see if it reduces them.

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my girlfriend had a tonsillectomy at 27 and I was her nurse, really if you have a friend that can bring some casserol dishes for a few days and can get a sitter for the kids to take care of thier main needs it would only be about a week IF that long. Really simple procedure and she was back to eating regular foods in 10 days.
maybe this will help http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_causes_white_chunks_in_ton...

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Wow! tonsil stones? You're right. Who knew?? Never heard of them. Glad to learn something new today.

2 moms found this helpful

I agree with Ina E.
I've been dealing with the "stones" since high school and all of my 4 sisters get em' too. They are so gross and really bother me when I get em'. Here's what I do to deal with them. I take peroxide and put it on a Q-tip and swab the area and sometimes that will cause it to come out. If that doesn't work, I gargle half warm water and half peroxide a few times a day until it works it's way out. This was recommended to me by my ENT Dr. He is aware that I've had this ongoing issue for years and never once recommended that I have a tonsilectomy. Don't worry too much.
I wouldn't recommend using a dry qtip to get them out, as you can irritate your tonsils too much and cause an infection.

2 moms found this helpful

I get that all the time! I asked my dr about it about 5 years ago and they said everyone get those. It's just left over food and other "stuff" that gets stuck over time and and it just builds up until it comes out. It's no big deal.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi! I had these and one ENT was ready to remove my tonsils, which are unusually large anyway. He gave me a round of antibiotics first that didn't work, but I was not ready for surgery. I got a second opinion and a second round of antibiotics and the chunks never returned! The gargling didn't work for me, so it definitely seemed like I just needed another round of antibiotics. Try that first before surgery!

1 mom found this helpful

Just saw this question for the first time today. Wow I had never heard them called anything. I've gotten them on and off for years. It's gross because if you're like me you can feel them when they're there. When I asked my fam dr abou it she said it's just like sinus junk that needs to come out. Sometimes I can like suck it out (like holding my breath and trying to suck snot out I guess sorry that's gross) other times I just wet the tip of my pointer finger and push it out. I also know now that I have post nasal drip and I tend to get sinus or head colds. Gargling with warm to hot salt water couldn't hurt but you may also try doing a sinus rinse periodically. NeilMed makes a couple of different types. I never liked the thought of doing one before but it's not as bad as I thought. You can find them at Walmart.

1 mom found this helpful

I would follow up with an ENT to make sure it's not strep if it is then Antibiotics will be needed once again but go from there you may not need them out at all I had it done when I was 13 had strep & bronchiotis several times yes it did hurt but it was soon over now several yrs later they have grown back it happens the smallest piece left behind the body just grows it back.My sore throats are crazy I hate them...As others mentioned there diagnoses make sure you see your Dr to get your accurate diagnoses it wouldn't hurt to gargle with warm salt water,Listerine what ever & including what your Dr has already told you.It does sound gross I hope hubby doesn't get them in his mouth if they fall off while kissing now thats gross

1 mom found this helpful

i dont know about the white chunks, but my niece had her tonsils out and it really wasnt as bad as we were expecting. they have come a long way.

but the only thing is, i wouldnt necessarily want to go through surgery for an "unknown" reason. i would def go to the ENT, but i would want a diagnosis first, then you can consider your options. the specialists should know rarer conditions your doctor may not be familiar with. i would expect the ENT to tell you whats going on and fix it. good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

I used to have the same thing and never could get a straight answer. The best I could come up with was food getting caught in the tonsil area. I did read gargling/rinsing after eating could help. I haven't dealt with it in quite some time and I still have my tonsils!

If you did need to have your tonsils out though get someone who will do it old school and cut them out not use a laser. I had 2 friends as adults that had it done and the one who's doc cut them out recovered in no time. She said her doc told her that the laser was easier for the doc but harder on the patient.

1 mom found this helpful

Update: good to read other answers. Never knew tonsil stones existed!

Please take care of this. Your body is trying very hard to fight something off, and if it's bacterial--ewww. I used to have this sort of abcessing tonsils thing in high school and I know, TMI, but this is likely pus. Go to the ENT. They might say Tonsilectomy, or they might decide it's something else, but you won't know until you go.

Here's a question: if one of your children were a grown adult in the same situation, what would you advise them? I hope you feel better soon!:)

1 mom found this helpful

Tonsil stones... Google it... you can even get them if you've had your tonsils out...
I've got them - I just ignore them.
YMMV
LBC

1 mom found this helpful

My husband had those. They are tonsil stones. They were causing him bad breath and apparently snoring. He would get so infected and swollen. He had his tonsils and adenoids out. It was tough on him for about 2 weeks. I think it was worth it, but he says he would never do that again.

1 mom found this helpful

I used to get those too, and they would tend to come out when I was surfing and ducking through the waves. There was something about the way I had to push the air out of my throat/ears as I went under a wave that would dislodge them. They were so gross and smelly.
Anyway, fast forward.....I had to have a tonsillectomy a few years ago because I ended up with a virus that left me with a tonsil tumor of all thingsm and they had to take it out to make sure it wasn't cancerous. The tonsillectomy was NOT for the tonsil stones, but I don't get them now that I don't have tonsils anymore.
But I do NOT recommend a tonsillectomy unless absolutely necessary. You are taking away one of your body's natural defenses against bacterial infections. Also, it took me 20, YES 20 DAYS to get to the point where I could eat any kind of solid food again. It was the worst pain of my life, I was absolutely miserable and starving to death because it was too painful to eat. The only thing that felt okay was chicken broth because of the salt. I lost 10 pounds in 2 weeks, and I only weighed 115 to begin with.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi D.,

This is actually normal. The tonsils are meant to keep your heart safe. They are a filter for all sorts of things. Theses lumps could be simply a buildup of stuff like Susan said or a bacteria trying to get into your system. Every body part is there for a reason. Don't let anyone talk you into removing your tonsils.

Determine what's causing the lumps and eliminate the problem. If you'd like suggestions to build your immune system let me know. I'd be glad to help.

God bless,

M.
www.squidoo.com/ifyourbabycouldtalk

1 mom found this helpful

Tonsil stones. They're gross, but they're not scary at all. I've had them and they went away on their own. Then they came back, then went away again...haven't had them for several years now. No big deal...

1 mom found this helpful

I'm glad you got such great responses, D.. I have had these for years and wondered and wondered what they were. I thought I was the only one who ever had these!
I'm so glad there are places like this for people to share and know that they're not alone in things like this!
Thanks everyone,
J.

D., I used to have them and so did my daughter. When we changed our diet they went away. You need to eat a clean diet of NO dairy or sugar, no processed foods and fill up with LOTS of fresh veggies, lots of leafy greens, whole grains, beans, legumes and miso soup is a natural antibiotic and fills you with energy.
It will take a while but they will go away from eating this way.

It is tonsillitis and getting the tonsils out can be painful but so can being sick all the time and not getting well. The ENT may be able to give you different choices as to the treatment. I take Sudafed, Children's liquid, and it makes the mucus runnier and it goes on down. When I miss a dose though I get the pus pockets again. I recommend at least seeing one, it might surprise you.

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