Everyone has suffered from throat pain at least once in their life. It’s a common misconception of associating tonsillitis with throat pain.
Let’s get to know about Tonsillitis
Tonsillitis is more than just a Throat Pain.
What is Tonsillitis?
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It’s an infection of Tonsils. Tonsils are found at the back of the throat, they act as a filter to help to protect the airway from infections. Tonsils trap the infection and counter them. They’re the first line of defense against airborne infections.1
At times tonsils start harboring bacteria and acts as a source of infection then they become a problem.
It’s common in children & Young adults
How do we know it’s tonsillitis?
- Throat pain
- Painful swallowing
- Neck swelling
- Tonsils appear red and swollen or might have yellowish spots on them.
Types of Tonsillitis:
- Acute Tonsillitis- lasting for a week
- Chronic Tonsillitis- Lasting for <4 weeks
- Recurrent Tonsillitis- 5-6 episodes/year
When should we consult a doctor?2
- High-Grade Fever with or without chills for more than 48 hours.
- Inability to eat
- Muffled Voice/ Change in voice
- Difficulty in breathing
Do we need investigations?
Yes, few investigations are essential for diagnosis and treatment:
- Blood test for infection
- Throat Swab- Culture & sensitivity: for knowing the pathogen and specific antibiotics.
How do we treat Tonsillitis?
Most of the tonsillitis is viral-induced and are self-limiting but when they’re bacterial in nature they need antibiotics.3
- Relevant Antibiotics
- Maintain hydration
- Proper rest
- Pain relief
- Warm saline gargles
At times tonsillitis has complications and in those cases, it needs specialized care in a hospital or Tonsillectomy.4
- Tonsillar Abscess
- Membranous/ Exudative Tonsillitis
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea
- Rheumatic fever/ Scarlet Fever
- Middle Ear Infections
- Avoid very cold things especially during weather change.
- Maintain oro-dental hygiene
- Flu Vaccination
When Do We Need Tonsillectomy?
Tonsils are an important part of the defense system of the body so it’s better to avoid surgery. But at times surgery is unavoidable.5
- Chronic/ recurrent Tonsillitis
- Sleep apnea
- Peritonsillar abscess
- Rheumatic Fever
Tonsillectomy has it’s own side effects so it should be kept as a last resort option.
I hope my article was helpful to you I’ll be back with more about Tonsillectomy soon.
Be Healthy Be Happy.
Disclaimer: This article is for reference purposes only, under no circumstances it should be used as a replacement of medical opinion by Professionals. Any decision regarding health and health care should be taken after professional advice only. Health care advice and information shared by the author are best to her knowledge. We disclaim all responsibilities for any inadvertent omission/ commission by the author or the website.
- Scott & Brown Otolaryngology & Head and Neck Surgery 7th Ed.