Tonsilitis

What are tonsils?

Tonsils, when working properly, help our body to stay healthy. They are located at the back of the throat on each side. By acting as a “filter” to the rest of the body they help our immune system know when there is a problem such as bacteria or a virus. Unfortunately, our tonsils do not always work like they should. Sometimes the bacteria or virus that they “filter” becomes an infection. Those who have recurring infections may have tonsillitis.

What is tonsilitis?

Tonsillitis occurs when the tonsils become inflamed due to infection. There may be abscesses that form around the tonsils, or pockets of infection within them. This may be caused by Streptococcus, Epstein-Barr, measles, cytomegalovirus, or adenovirus. There are several different kinds of tonsillitis, including:

  • Acute: most children in the United States have had acute tonsillitis
  • Recurrent: more than one infection a year
  • Chronic: consistent symptoms or infection
  • Peritonsillar Abscess: severe pain that does not subside

What are the Symptoms of Tonsillitis?

  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Foul breath
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • White coating on tonsils
  • Red tonsils
Little girl suffering with tonsilitis symptoms

What should I do to treat tonsilitis?

Tonsillitis mainly occurs in children but sometimes it does affect adults. Most of the time it can be treated with a simple round of antibiotics being prescribed by a doctor. If you are having difficulty breathing, it is important to seek help immediately.

If you or your child's infection continues it may be time to remove the tonsils to avoid further suffering.

Don’t let tonsillitis get worse!

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