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Hi Sonya,

The white bumps in your husband’s throat are actually, Streptococcus aureus.

Streptococcus aureus, is a bacteria and is causing the white pustule like bumps.

So your husband has an infection in short.

I would stay away from stabbing it with any q-tips to say the least as this could spread it more and also cause the infection to worsen.

Hope this helps you out, in what is causing the end result of what you see.


Common Sense Doc (Dr.)
apu_stiffler last decade
i have white bumps in the back of my throat, it just occurred a couple of days ago. at first i thought i was catching a cold because for one i have a sore throat, my ears hurt and my nose is kind of stuffy. i tried using cough medicine and cough drops until i felt pain - its painful to swallow. so yesterday i looked in the mirror and i saw white little white bumps in my throat. i am so scared. but i am going to the doctor this friday
honisuckle1 last decade
i also just had hives for about a week recently
honisuckle1 last decade
I am 32 and used to have these white lumps, then I appeared to 'grow out of it' But like another person on this site I have developed acid reflux and Iam taking medication and guess what, the lumps have come back big style, this morning I had to remove 20 plus from the back on my throat. I think it's got to be related to my hiatus hernia and acid reflux but the dr just says it old food!
mjky73 last decade
I had my tonsils out one week ago today because I have been suffering with tonsil stones for about 15 years. I am not going to lie about the pain. It is horrific. Actually, the first couple of days were not that bad. But each day has gotten progressively worse. The doctor says that I am healing and it is tightening up, that is why it hurts so bad. Believe me, if there were another solution other than surgery I would have done it. At least I know they are gone forever.
xoxoxo last decade
Mmmm....hork balls.

see photos. geocities com slash falling_over_edge slash tonsiloliths dot html

This website doesn't support links, so you'll have to figure it out.
finn_vonbondie last decade
I am fifteen now. Yesturday, I felt that I had a piece of food stuck in the back of my throat hours after I had eaten. I coughed a lot to try to get it out, but it felt just stuck there. When I was smaller I would feel these white pieces coming up from my throat, but I would spit them out. They did have the color of teeth and smelled a little bad. My mom informed me that when I once had a cold, she saw that in the back of my throat and told the doctor about it. The doctor told her it was nothing. I can't even remember the last time I felt these. I don't remember getting these white things stuck in my throat. I thought it was food or radically.... a tooth. I tried to touch it, and I eventually got rid of it after trying a lot. I don't know if it sunk in deeper but, but I still see a hole in where it was and other holes by it. My aunt said they might be what they call caves or something like holes in the throat. When I touched it... not pleasant if you feel like you might gag... I couldn't tell the difference of the skin and that. Is it food? What were those things that I used to spit out as a kid?
Ivonne0107 last decade
I've had these for several years, perhaps longer, but only noticed them about 4 years ago.

My husband and son both have them as well.

This is the first site I've come across discussing them, so it's nice to know we aren't the only ones with this "problem."

Beyond the bad breath that seems to be caused by them, and the annoying pokey feeling that I get in the back of my throat, I'm not sure they are really bad.

I've noticed several people mention that they don't get sick as much as other people do.

I haven't had a cold in nearly 20 years. No flu, no sore throat, no infections of any kind!

The tonsils are now known to help filter infection. I've had a theory that these tonsilloliths are actually dead white blood cells and bacteria, thus the smell.

Antibiotics, in my opinion, do more harm than good. There is bacteria in our body that is necessary for our health. My mother takes antibiotics everytime she gets a sinus infection. And then she promptly gets a systemic yeast infection because the good bacteria is no longer keeping it in check....

Anyway. I always pick the white clumps out with a toothpick or a sterilized steel crochet hook. I crochet doilies and have some VERY small crochet hooks. These seem to work very, very well and pulling the white things out of the pockets in the tonsils.

I also have large tonsils, much larger than you generally see in pictures or diagrams. My son has the enlarged tonsils as well.

I wonder if we could somehow put a list together of what everyone who has these things has in common?
thepsychick last decade
Chronic Cryptic Tonsillitis
The tonsils contain many pits and pockets called crypts. These, in some people tend to become impacted with white foul-smelling (especially to the owner) debris (old food particles) that is composed of bacteria and dead cells. They can look like white balls on the back of the tonsils. When picked at they ooze out puss and nasty bacteria causing a very FOUL odor. It can cause a low grade intermittent sore throat. Also, bad breath is a major side effect from this gunk. Not much can help this gross stinky white ball infestation. The only consistent cure is a tonsillectomy.
AuntLaLa last decade
Chronic Cryptic Tonsillitis
The tonsils contain many pits and pockets called crypts. These, in some people tend to become impacted with white foul-smelling (especially to the owner) debris (old food particles) that is composed of bacteria and dead cells. They can look like white balls on the back of the tonsils. When picked at they ooze out puss and nasty bacteria causing a very FOUL odor. It can cause a low grade intermittent sore throat. Also, bad breath is a major side effect from this gunk. Not much can help this gross stinky white ball infestation. The only consistent cure is a tonsillectomy.
AuntLaLa last decade
YAY! I found a club with the little white squishy cauliflower like thingies stuck in my tonsils. I have huge tonsils. And these things get stuck little caverns of fun in my tonsils.

Yes they cause terrible breath. I really dont know what they are. I thought they were formed by food getting stuck in the little pockets(crypts). But they could be a mixture of things.

The main times I notice them is after I smoke. Im not a smoker but occasionally smoke marijuana and cigars. I think smoking, at least for me, may have something to do with making the crypts bigger or sucking things into them.

Im going to stop smoking altogether and see if this helps. Im 25 and if that doesnt work the only long term solution I can think of is getting my huge tonsils removed. That would mean no more digging and gagging, no more stinky breath, no more tonsilitus type infections. I dont care about the pain of recovery, it seems worth it not to have to deal with this anymore.
pancakes last decade
It has been over a month since my tonsillectomy, and even though the pain was pretty severe, I owuld do it again if I had to. Now I don't have to worry about those nasty things in my tonsils anymore. I had at least 5 or 6 of them a day. Some I could pick out easily, others I wasn't so lucky and they would be stuck for weeks at a time. I would only go through a tonsillectomy if you have a chronic problem with tonsilloliths like I did. It was worth it.
xoxoxo last decade
Ive got the same problem.

Bought the TheraBreath products a few weeks ago. Seemed to be working as I hadnt had any stones for a week or so.


Guess all his claims dont moun to a hill of beans.

Save your $$$$
Mister T last decade
Ok, I’ve been reading this forum for a while now and signed up because I have an idea.
First, I think I got these 25 years ago from going to the Orthodontist. At 14 I was hospitalized with a sore throat that they called a ‘staf’ infection and I’ve had these ever since. Secondly, these are not caused by food being trapped. I’ve listened to that story for over 20 years from doctors and it’s not, it’s not, it’s not. I really don’t think it has anything to do with sugary drinks or smoking either as I drink mostly water and don’t smoke. Thirdly, I think the idea that having these gives us some special immunity to illness is not exactly correct, although I do think that they keep our white count level high so we are constantly fighting off infections. Which I think means we are constantly a little sick instead of ever getting really sick and really well. After a bout of antibiotics for something, my temperature runs below normal for a while.
Here’ my idea, building on the ideas already presented. I’m going to try irrigating with Apple Cider Vinegar with water again. It worked the first time for a while, but I used the normal attachment for the Water Pik instead of the tongue cleaner and it hurt to bad to try again. I didn’t get both tonsils as well as I should have in hindsight. I did have one tonsil totally clear for over 9 months, but now they are back in both. My problem now is that they are on the inside of the tonsil with no way out. It’s like my tonsil wants to give birth to one of the stones but can’t find the exit! Pretty much in constant pain. Mine not only grow inside the tonsils, but above them and in the between the flaps in front and behind them.
I’ve picked vinegar to use because it has been proven to be as effective as bleach in killing bacteria. Salt water has done nothing for me through the years (I think that’s based on the idea of osmosis and the salt water isn’t around the bacteria enough to do anything). I think that alcohol could possibly work or mouth wash or even hydrogen peroxide. I’m hoping some of us can use different things and see how it works. I have to find this mystery tongue cleaner I haven’t been able to find before I try this again, but I’ll let you know how it goes. I’m hoping some of you with the tongue cleaner attachment can go ahead and test the theory in the mean time. We may have to do a daily or weekly regime. I’m just interested in seeing if it works for anyone else.
justmebyanyname last decade
I had to weigh in on this topic. I've also suffered with these. Yes, most doctors are clueless about this condition. It's NOT strep throat, as someone said above (Although that can also cause white bumps -- but this is totally different.) These aren't mere bumps, but actual material which exudes from the tonsillar crypts when it reaches a certain size.

I have experienced relief by cutting out nuts and chocolate from my diet. I have not had any "stinkballs" since then. Also, my tonsils have shrunk dramatically.

I already don't eat gluten or dairy. (I was consuming chocolate-flavored almond milk every day -- I switched to vanilla rice milk.)

For what it's worth, I also tend to get apthous stomatitis, aka canker sores, on the tonsils and occasionally gums. My mom has a severe case of them. We both have other autoimmune disease. The canker sores are definitely food-related. Staying away from the offending foods has also improved these greatly. My mom has a much bigger list of foods she must avoid. How much is consumed and how often (occasional vs. daily) also seems to affect it for me.

I'm not suggesting everyone will respond to my specific dietary suggestions -- but I really believe in my case, it's due to food sensitivities. It's worth investigating for yourself.
flotsette last decade
Well, it's clear there's as much disagreement amongst sufferers as there is amongst Doctors as to what the cause of the stones are. It's best to clarify what the stones consist of. Point one -
When analysed they contain bits of everything, INCLUDING food, white blood cells etc etc - there isn't one common thing that makes up the stones.

Point two - Surprisingly enough removal of the tonsils doesn't mean the total elimination of tonsil stones. When they remove the tonsil element - the famous tonsilectomy - they don't remove ALL of the tonsil. There's stil a bit left. If you really want to spend some time googling you can find a case (including picture) where a woman has had a whopping big stone removed AFTER she'd had a tonsilectomy. I bet that didn't contain food particles though as there was no path for the food to get into the area where the tonsil stone was.

So if you can still get tonsil stones without a direct route to the throat then it's clear that the food particles that are contained in the stones are a consequence of the stones - not the cause. Which leads back to one of my earliest posts. I "caught" tonsil stones and I also "gave" them to someone else. My ex wife never caught them despite the usual kissing etc and I was with her for 10 years. She had the constitution of an ox and was never ill. However, one of my girlfriends caught the stones within two months of meeting her. She was always ill with something or other. She didn't have the constitution of an ox (and she certainly didn't look like one, believe me...but I digress).

We have all had antibiotics at one time or another and noticed that while we were on them the stones improved. I don't think anyone can deny that. About two years ago I got an infection and it wasn't nice. The hospital said it was a slight infection of the prostate. I took the strong antibiotics and although it helped while I was on them the infection came back when I stopped. The hospital said that this was a common thing and the temporary relief while on medication was usual. They said that they would massage the prostate and that should sort it. The infection was deep and more tablets with the massage would do it. Ladies, google the term and you'll see what things us men have to go through!

Anyway I went to New York shopping and while taking the tablets did more walking than I have done in years. From central park to the Battery and back again every day It shifted the infection and nothing further was required. I massaged it myself by walking...

The similarities are quite profound. We get temporary relief from stones when on antibiotics and the gland (tonsil) is very big. I'm certain that with the white blood cells being part of the stones there is an infection and it can be caught. It's deep and needs different treatment than what is being offered. Well, none is being offered really! When the holes in the tonsils get bigger there's an opportunity for food to "slide" in - but food isn't the cause. When I have a drink - which isn't very often - the bigger holes help the alcohol to get in and rinse the crypts out a little, it also killing off any bugs so reducing the smell.

In essence - I'm totally convinced they're caused by a deep seated infection.

Could I thank the people at ABC Homeopathy for letting us have this forum and for putting up with us. Looking at the number of views it's the only unbiased/none sales orientated site discussing this topic.
albert22 last decade
albert22, I really appreciate all your thoughtful responses all the way through this thread.

Just to make sure I was clear in my post above, it's not that I think my tonsil stones were caused by food sliding into the crypts. Rather, certain foods cause an inflammatory (aka autoimmune) response in my body, which somehow leads to the creation of the stones.

This is commonly referred to as a food allergy, although that's not exactly correct, since a "true" allergy is one that causes an anaphlactic reaction. So it's more accurate to call it a sensitivity. I can eat nuts and still breathe -- but I did find that stopping them caused my tonsils to shrink dramatically. And since then, no more stones. It has only been a few months though.

I should note that I seem to have had a mild problem versus some of the folks on this forum. However as we all know this problem is distressing, whether it's mild or severe! Mine appeared maybe 5 years ago, went away after a short while, then reappeared earlier this year.

Albert, I do think your idea of some sort of chronic infection is a definite possibility. It could be possible that certain foods (for me) supress my immune function and therefore lead to the creation of the stones. But I don't think that's all there is to it either. My suspicion is there's some kind of autoimmune connection.

Finally, I can't believe that when so many people have this problem, that so many doctors are ignorant of it. Some doctors out there must have had this problem too. It's frustrating that it is so ignored and totally not understood. But such is the case of many autoimmune diseases.
flotsette last decade
Wow, a whole message board dedicated to this chronic problem. I have suffered with these for almost 20 years. I used to get strep and sore throats frequently. Over the past several years I've been fairly healthy with no major sore throats like in previous years. I have only met one doctor who knew what I was talking about and didn't look at me like I was making the whole thing up. The only time that they completely cleared up was when I was on long term low grade antibiotics to treat breakouts on my face. (didn't help that but cleared up my tonsils so I stayed on it for a long time) Now I have it back but instead of the "pockets" of gunk I know have to push above my tonsils to get the stuff to come out. One good this is an ENT dr. told me that as we get older our tonsils will shrink. And mine are definitely not as large as they used to be. The only thing I do now is gargle with peroxide after I clean my tonsils out. I find that I almost never face someone directly to speak to them and try not to get to close because I never know if it's a bad breath day or not. I have a lot of congestion/drainage right now because of allergies and I find this makes it worse. I'm looking for alternatives to antibiotics and have read about probiotics. Has anyone tried something like this to boost your immune system? I am truly convinced that they are related to some type of chronic infection that just never goes away. Do you think that building up the immune system, which might help with the allergies too, could help? It sure can't hurt.
joan39 last decade
Joan, I'm a big fan of probiotics in general, and have wondered myself if they have an effect on the stones.

As I understand it, they don't so much build up your immune system themselves, but rather work by keeping bad bacteria in check.

Last year I had to take a lot of antibiotics (unrelated issue) and I ended up with a mild case of thrush, no to mention a yeast infection, which I cleared up by continuing to take probiotics.

It certainly seems that if you have an imbalance of "good" and "bad" bacteria in the mouth, that this could affect the tonsil stone situation. And since you have been on long-term antibiotic therapy it certainly couldn't hurt to try.

It's a good idea to get the probiotics to where they are needed locally (in the case of a yeast infection, it works well to insert probiotic capsules in the vagina.) You could get the same effect in the mouth by using a powdered supplement, or breaking open capsules and dissolving them in body-temperature water, then gargling with it before swallowing.

I especially like Interplexus brand probiotics, but any you can find would probably be okay. Better than nothing! Just remember to keep them in the fridge, and never put them in hot water as this will kill the organisms.
flotsette last decade
I forgot to mention: if you order the Interplexus brand of probiotics for gargling, don't get the "Flora-Elite" product - because it comes in a tablet rather than a capsule. Their other products come in capsules and/or packets in a powdered form. You can find ordering information on their website. Be aware the have changed the product line slightly, but if you call their order line they can update you.

Be aware that if you take a huge dose to get you recolonized, you may experience some temporary digestive upset -- gas and/or diarehhea. This is probably not a concern for brands you find in your local store (this company makes bigger dosages than normal.)

Also, there's always yogurt and other fermented foods. These have the added benefit of contact with your mouth and tonsils.

If you do gargle with supplements, I'd do it after a meal -- so that you don't wash away all the organisms right away with food or drink.
flotsette last decade
Hello flotsette,

I also have these annoying chunks of foul-smelling yellow and white stuff that are inside my tonsils. I also have a large hole just above my tonsil where the occational monster-sized chunk lives. The largest was aproximately 3/8 of an inch in diabeter! I have always had large tonsils and had a case of tonsilitus when I was about 11, but did not have them removed.

I tend to agree with you that these things may be somehow related to an autoimmune response. I have type-1 diabetes, and never seemed to get these things before I was thirteen and diagnosed with diabetes.

After reading some of these posts I am seriously considering having a tonsilectomy.
Jess_4 last decade
okay, I just want to let everybody know that the size of your tonsils really doesn't matter. My tonsils were incredibly small when I had them removed last month. But I had crypts in every place possible. I am 34 years old. I have been having sinus, allergy and post nasal drip problems since I was 18. I noticed the tonsil stones and the crypts a few years after that. My doctor told me that when I suffered form post nasal drip over the years, it would collect on my tonsils, having no where to go, but just to accumulate on the tonsils, especially while I was sleeping. Over time, the crypts formed because the post nasal drip was "decaying on the tonsils" making the holes. The holes got deeper the longer the bacteria was "trapped". Then after a huge crypt was formed it was much easier for the post nasal drip, bacteria, to get caught, forming a bigger hole and thus causing a cycle. If you think that the older you get, and your tonsils shrinking will help you are wrong. I am not trying to be a pessimist but the older you get the worse it gets. I would go through a tonsillectomy again, just so I wont have to deal with these. Oh, by the way, let me just tell all of you, I've never had strep, nor have I had alot of "sore throats" over the years. But that isn't why the tonsil stones formed in my case. I still had my tonsils removed solely on the basis of having tonsil stones. And even though tonsil stones aren'/t a major health risk. More of a problem than anything else. I had been debating the tonsillectomy for over 10 years. It was the best decision for me. No more of those disgusting balls anymore.
xoxoxo last decade
It seems pride goeth before the fall. First thing this morning I horked up a few stones. I still think that eating things that irritate my tonsils make it worse. I've been eating a lot of popcorn lately, and that probably doesn't help. I also have been taking arsenicum album 30C for a few days for an unrelated reason, but maybe it was stirring things up inside there.

Thanks xoxoxo for your comments. I've also considered having mine out -- but after reading this thread, I realize my problem is very minor compared to a lot of you. And that the pain is major. But it's very nice knowing I'm not the only person in the world with this problem.

By the way, I only have problems with one tonsil. The other seems totally unaffected. This goes for both the canker sores and for the stones.
flotsette last decade
yesterday, i felt a fatigue in my throat. which has been on and off for sometime.

i didn't give it much notice because i have other problems to tend to (like eczema).

then when i got home i had one of them in my mouth, 4 millimeter in size. really foul smelling.

the last time i coughed it up i was a kid.

In some Japanese websites, they say it's actually GOOD to gargle with tea or green tea cos they work as natural antiseptics. so I'm a bit confused now.

what is a water pick?

i can't seem to "squeeze" any out by pressurizing tonsils.

today, i felt the tonsil pockets with my fingers and got out nothing, but my fingers got a really foul smell.
japan last decade
check this webpage out for a photo of a tonsil stone stuck in the tonsil...

don't worry if the text is all garbled. it's written in Japanese.

japan last decade
I've got 'em, too. Woo hooooo!

I have had tonsil stones since I was about 15. My mother and two female cousins also have had them. Both cousins had their tonsils out as adults for tosilitis, but they never had tonsil stones again afterward.

I am sure they are not contagious. Most people I have talked to that also get them started getting them in their teens or early twenties, and as adults, they have had a steady occurrence of them.

Before moving on to a dental pik (you know, the one that comes in the self-dentistry pack with the little round mirror on a stick?), I rigged my own device. My mother and cousins also used the same device to dig the suckers out. I only suggest doing this if you're in dire straights and desperately need to free yourself of the chunk:

Take a regular pencil with a sturdy eraser on it and press a stick pin into it. If you push with enough force, you will bend the pin to about a 45 degree angle. This is wanted, because the angle allows you to dig a little deeper in the tonsil folds. Now make sure you check the tightness of the pin in the eraser, because you don't want the pin falling out down your throat. Have a tissue at the ready to place your chunks on. This is helpful for when you want to squish the chunk to smell the funk (you don't want that smell on your hands).

The pencil-and-pin method are the best I've found because I never bleed. The self-dentistry kit works, I usually nick myself in the process, but it's much more safe than the loose pin down the throat.

Good luck, Chunk Buddies. Many happy retrievals to you! :)
AustinAngela last decade

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