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Old 03-24-2006, 12:49 PM   #1
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What the heck is that white tonsil goop?

Ok so last year I suffered twice from tonsillitis. Ever since the second bout I have noticed that I have had consistent white discharge on my tonsils. The discharge is thick and very hard to remove. Gargling etc does nothing to remove it, it's like the stuff is just glued there. Sometimes in the am it appears the tonsils are more 'clear' so to speak but then in the evening if I inspect it's a lot worse. It seems the right one has more numbers of the white exudate and the left is more clear for some reason. I don't have a fever and don't present any of the 'sick' symptoms that go along with tonsillitis. I guess my question is, is it normal to just have white gunk on your tonsils all the time from food and post nasal etc.. And if that's the case why does it just stay caked on for days and weeks. Wouldn't gargling, drinking water, eating foods and normal mouth bacteria etc just get rid of it? I just don't know what the heck is going on and getting frequently nervous about it.

Oh and ps. I did go to ENT and the only thing they said was tonsils are cryptic but say nothing about the white stuff at all and what I can do for it. They were no help basically.

 
Old 03-24-2006, 01:43 PM   #2
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Re: What the heck is that white tonsil goop?

Actually, they did kind of answer your question, they just didn't explain it. LOL

Tonsils have "crypts" which are basically depressions on the surface of your tonsils. Food and such can get stuck in there, which is the white things you are seeing. It's actually fairly normal. It's not a sign of infection or anything like that and there's nothing that can really be done about it. Just basically, keep gargling (since bacteria can build up in there) and you'll be fine. I have the same problem because my tonsils are "abnormally large"....so my ENT says.

 
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Old 03-24-2006, 01:52 PM   #3
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Re: What the heck is that white tonsil goop?

Edit: I hate double posts

Last edited by Mar1; 03-24-2006 at 01:53 PM.

 
Old 03-24-2006, 01:54 PM   #4
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Re: What the heck is that white tonsil goop?

I've never been told that I have large tonsils, but it seems like I always get food stuck in my right tonsil (which is bigger than the other one).... I'm wondering if the saline salt water rinse I'm doing in my nose with help the tonsils or should I just gargle as well?

 
Old 03-24-2006, 02:05 PM   #5
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Re: What the heck is that white tonsil goop?

I would gargle personally. I'm also doing the nasal rinses and I don't get very much coming out of my mouth, so I gargle with warm salt water.

Last edited by Mar1; 03-24-2006 at 02:06 PM.

 
Old 03-24-2006, 02:18 PM   #6
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Re: What the heck is that white tonsil goop?

cool..thanks for your continuing help

 
Old 03-24-2006, 07:54 PM   #7
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Re: What the heck is that white tonsil goop?

This white chunks are called tonsilloliths. There doesn't seem to be an agreement on whether the chunks are decayed food or actually decayed tissue. Either way, they can feel weird, possibly cause irritation, and definitely smell really bad.


If you leave your tonsills alone for a week or so, you can use the smooth capped end of an eyeliner pencil or a makeup brush (sanitized and sterilized of course) to pop the white chunks out. There is an elective surgery now available for people who can't take them anymore. I don't know the name, but I read about it in self magazine last year - instead of removing the tonsils, the doctor can use a laser to close up the holes by scarring them.

 
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