White spots on your tonsils can be a scary sight, and you might start panicking once you detect them. However, the causes of these white patches are treatable in most cases, which means that they are usually not a symptom of a serious condition. We will get you familiar with the possible reasons why your tonsils have white dots and how you can treat them.

What Causes White Spots on Tonsils?

Strep throat, oral thrush, and other health conditions are typically responsible for the white blotches on your tonsils. Changes in your tonsil’s appearance are a possible sign that an infection has invaded your body, as the white spots appear due to the reaction. Moreover, swollen and sore throat also accompany the discoloration.

Some reasons for these white spots include:

1 – Strep Throat

The discolored patches on your tonsils might be indicating strep throat, which is a bacterial infection caused by Streptococcus. If the white spots are due to strep throat, you will also experience:

  • Sore throat
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Inflammation and swelling in your tonsils
  • Fever
  • Headache

Anyone experiencing these symptoms must seek medical attention. This is because further health complications can arise if you leave strep throat untreated.

2 – Oral Thrush

Another culprit for the white spots on your tonsils is a fungal infection called oral thrush. The Candida albicans fungus can lead to a yeast infection, which appears as creamy white patches in your mouth. Other symptoms of oral thrush include:

  • Painful swallowing
  • Difficulty while swallowing
  • Redness
  • Soreness and burning in the mouth
  • Losing sense of taste
  • Cracking skin at the corners of the mouth

It usually affects infants and babies, but it can happen to anyone. Diabetics, people who wear dentures, smokers, and people with suppressed immune systems are also at risk of oral thrush.

3 – Tonsillitis
Your tonsils might have white spots due to tonsillitis, which usually results from a viral infection. You will notice inflammation and swelling in your tonsils, which can also occur with strep throat. Viral tonsillitis will also have these symptoms:

  • Redness and swelling in tonsils
  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Trouble swallowing along with pain
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Bad breath

4 – Infectious Mononucleosis
Mononucleosis is also a possible reason for the white patches on your tonsils. It is a viral infection that is contagious. Epstein-Barr virus results in this condition, also known as mono or ‘the kissing disease’, as it spreads from person to person through saliva. Apart from white pus patches around tonsils, mono can bring:

  • Headaches
  • Fever
  • Body rashes
  • Fatigue
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Symptoms of flu

5 – Tonsil Stones
The white spots might actually be calcium deposits or tonsil stones. Also called tonsilloliths, they appear in small cracks. Food particles, mucus, and bacteria can accumulate on your tonsils and form these yellow or white stones. You will also experience:

  • Bad breath
  • Sore throat
  • A feeling of foreign presence in your throat
  • Difficulty swallowing

Treating White Spots on Tonsils

Treatment for the white dots on your tonsils depends on the cause. Your healthcare provider will examine the white patches, and then they might suggest:

  • Antibiotics or OTC medications for strep throat
  • Antifungal medication for thrush
  • Tonsil stones usually go away by themselves
  • Tonsillectomy for severe inflammation
  • Home treatments like saltwater gargles, rest, warm fluids, and more.

What Should I Do?

You should go to your dentist if you notice white spots on your tonsils. They will inspect your patches and suggest the appropriate treatment. In addition, you can rest and stick to your doctor’s instructions.

At Gateway Family Dentistry, we offer multiple services to cater to your dental needs. Dial (661) 829-7905 to get in touch with us.

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