Why Do We Have Tonsils

If you open your mouth widely, then you can see two fleshy lumps on the backside of your throat and the uvula dangles down in the middle. Tonsils are the two sides of the uvula and are pink in color with white spots sometimes. Tonsillitis is actually a disorder, which involve inflammation of tonsils. Your tonsils are part of your immune system and just like other parts, this also consist of special cells for trapping and killing viruses and bacteria that travels through your body. If your tonsils are infected from inside, then they become inflamed and red and swell up.

Causes of tonsillitis

The main reason behind tonsillitis includes different bacteria and viruses and the infection can also spread from one person to another by hand contact or airborne droplets. Some of main viruses that causes of tonsillitis include:

  • Epstein-Barr virus: This virus can also cause glandular fever and is one of the common causes of tonsillitis and it is mostly found in young people.
  • Streptococcus group A: This is also known as strep throat and the incubation period amid the picking up and breaking out of the disease is about 2 to 4 days, or less.
  • Common cold viruses: These include rhinovirus, adenovirus, coronavirus, etc.

At times, tonsillitis is also caused by infection of treponema or spirochaeta.

Symptoms of tonsillitis

Now, when you know why and due to what reasons you get tonsillitis, you should also learn about the symptoms of tonsillitis as well. These include:

  • Swollen tonsils
  • Yellow and white patches on tonsils
  • Sore throat
  • Cough
  • Difficulty in swallowing
  • Stiff neck
  • Body aches
  • Ulcerations

If you are suffering from acute tonsillitis, then it might be accompanied with symptoms such as bad breath, ear pain, drooling together with fever and sore throat.

Treatment of tonsillitis

There are different treatment options for tonsillitis such as :

  • Anti-inflammatory, pain relief, as well as fever reducing medications
  • Relief for sore throat like warm liquids, lozenges, etc
  • For group A streptococcus, antibiotics are administered with amoxicillin or penicillin
  • If a patient is allergic to penicillin, then he is administered with a macrolide like erythromycin.
  • Surgery like tonsillectomy is done in chronic cases

Complications in tonsillitis

Rare complications of tonsillitis include kidney failure and dehydration because of swallowing problem, pharyngitis, and blocked airways. At times, some patients develop an abscess on the side of tonsils. This abscess is also known as perintonsillar abscess. In rare cases, the infection spreads beyond tonsils and affect internal jugular vein, which can lead to spread of septicaemia infection. Further, in very rare tonsillitis cases, diseases like glomerulonephritis or rheumatic fever can crop up. However, these complications are very rare.

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