People who feel pain every time they swallow their food while eating or who always have bad breath no matter how clean they keep their mouth are most likely dealing with a condition known as tonsil stones. Hard mineral formations get stuck in the throat around the tonsils and are responsible for causing these symptoms. While the two most common symptoms are halitosis and pain while swallowing some additional symptoms can occur. These include an actual difficulty to swallow, recurrent ear pain, uncontrollable bursts of coughing and a feeling of a tight throat.
These symptoms aren’t surprising given the nature of the stones themselves. They are essentially an invasive presence and the body will fight to get rid of them. Coughing is a reaction to a foreign object and serves to try to expel it from the throat. The pain felt either around the tonsils or in the ears is due to the pressure the stones apply on local nerves that innervate various parts of the head.
The only symptom that cannot be directly linked to the pressure and physical presence of the stones is halitosis (more commonly known as bad breath). In this case, there is a specific type of bacteria that becomes present in higher numbers and increases the production of sulphuric compounds in someone’s mouth. These compounds are responsible for the unpleasant odor. Recent scientific evidence shows that this specific type of bacteria is not only responsible for halitosis but is also linked to the formation of tonsil stones.
Getting rid of the stones
Since tonsil stones are hard mineral formations that get stuck in the throat, getting rid of them requires them to be physically pushed out.
Some courageous individuals actually prefer to remove the stones at home either by using a cotton swab or some kind of pick. This can be difficult since seeing the stone isn’t always possible by using just a mirror.
A good way to deal with the pain caused by the tonsil stones is to gargle with warm salt water. This remedy has been around for ages and is very effective at reducing the swelling associated with the condition. Of course, this only deals with the symptom of pain and doesn’t deal with removing the stone which is the source of the problem.
Doctors will sometimes prescribe antibiotics to eliminate some of the odor and tonsil stone causing bacteria. This is only a temporary solution though since antibiotics cannot be taken daily for a long time without causing side effects. Getting rid of the stones is still the best thing to do because it is the only permanent solution and the best way to do it is to consult with the appropriate doctor.