Could You Benefit From a Tonsillectomy?
Your tonsils are located in the back of your throat. They are a part of the lymphatic system which is distributed throughout your body and help to fight infection. Sometimes the tonsils themselves get infected and lead to a painful, swollen throat. When this occurs too frequently, or when the tonsils are so large that they affect breathing and sleeping, it is often recommended that the tonsils be removed. While having a tonsillectomy (the removal of your tonsils) is a more common procedure for children, it can provide many benefits to adults in the proper circumstances.
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In a perfect world, people would be able to take all the time they need to heal and relax but the reality is that life does not pause just because someone has an infection. Dealing with sore throats, infections, and fevers even a few times a year can cost a lot. If frequent infections occur, there is a lot of work or school that the patient may have to miss. If your frequent throat infections are beginning to affect your attendance and availability, it’s time to see a doctor learn if a tonsillectomy will benefit you.
Fewer Throat Infections
One of the most common reasons to have a tonsillectomy is because of frequent infections. Throat infections may sound harmless, as they are a common enough illness that most people experience one in their lifetime, but they come with serious risks. Infections such as tonsillitis or strep throat are accompanied by painful symptoms. Coughing, chills, headaches, pus-filled spots and even fevers are some of the symptoms most associated with these infections. By having your tonsils removed, you reduce the risk of developing these harsh infections.
Tonsil stones, or Tonsilloliths as they are known, are chunks of calcium that form in the nooks and crannies of tonsils. While they pose little harm, they can be quite annoying. Patients with tonsilloliths often complain of bad breath and odor, bad taste, and a foreign body sensation. There is also the annoyance and embarrassment of spitting out these unattractive calcium deposits. Often, patients will try a variety of home remedies – mouthwash, irrigation, drinking carbonated beverages. Many patients resort to physically picking the stones out of their tonsils, although this is not recommended as oral trauma may occur. When this condition persists despite reasonable attempts to control it, it is useful to consult an ENT physician to see if a tonsillectomy is indicated.
Did you know that your tonsils can contribute to sleep apnea? They can also cause daily breathing problems if they are too large. Enlarged tonsils can affect air’s ability to get through if they are considerably larger than the opening of your windpipe, causing serious breathing problems. This is a dangerous situation and requires a diagnosis from a qualified professional.
Your tonsils may be a source of pain, annoyance, and discomfort. If they are constantly sore or enlarged, it is important to have a medical evaluation so that you can be informed of all of your treatment options.