Tonsils are the two lymph nodes located on each side of the back of the throat. They function as a defense mechanism. They help prevent your body from infection. When the tonsils become infected, the condition is called tonsillitis.


  • Inflamed tonsilsInflamed tonsils
  • Tonsillitis is most often caused by common viruses, but bacterial infections can also be the cause.
  • The most common bacterium causing tonsillitis is Streptococcus pyogenes (group A streptococcus), the bacterium that causes strep throat. Other strains of strep and other bacteria also may cause tonsillitis.


  • a sore throat
  • difficulty swallowing
  • hoarse or no voice
  • a high temperature of 38C or above
  • coughing
  • headache
  • feeling sick
  • earache
  • feeling tired

Sometimes the symptoms can be more severe, such as

  • Swollen painful glands in your neck – feels like a lump on the side of your neck
  • White pus-filled spots on your tonsils at the back of your throat
  • Bad breath

Preventing tonsillitis

Tonsillitis is highly contagious. To decrease your risk of getting tonsillitis, stay away from people who have active infections. Wash your hands often, especially after coming into contact with someone who has a sore throat, or is coughing or sneezing. If you have tonsillitis, try to stay away from others until you are no longer contagious.

  • Home care tips to ease a sore throat
  • drink plenty of fluids
  • get lots of rest
  • gargle with warm salt water several times a day
  • use throat lozenges
  • use a humidifier to moisten the air in your home
  • avoid smoke

Home Remedies

  • the salt water gargle
  • lime juice, honey and salt
  • Boil milk and add a pinch of turmeric powder and black pepper powder. Drink
  • Drink freshly squeezed beetroot, carrot, or cucumber juice daily
  • Boil fenugreek seeds in water for half an hour. Cool and strain and use this water to gargle with
  • Boil fresh figs and grind them into a paste. Apply this paste on the external area of the throat to cool down a rash and redness of the throat and provide pain relief.
  • Chamomile tea mixed with lemon and honey.
  • Apply alum powder on the surface of the tonsils or gargle with alum and water.

Diet for Tonsillitis

  • Switch to a liquid only diet for a few days. Ideally a fruit juice fast for three to five days can help boost immunity and fight off any infection. Drink only orange juice and water until the painful symptoms subside.
  • After this, for the next few days ensure that your meals are balanced with a healthy combination of fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains and nuts to boost the body’s immunity after the infection.
  • Drink plenty of fluids, avoid carbonated drinks and too much hot tea and coffee as these can aggravate the condition.
  • Avoid foods that are very sour or spicy when suffering from tonsillitis. Items such as hot sauces, yogurt, sour cream, and fried foods irritate the throat and can cause more inflammation and pain.

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