What are tonsil stone causes and why do some people suffer from them while others do not? When investigating possible sources of tonsil stones, it is important to understand that the tonsils are not the cause of tonsil stones but only provide a medium in which stones are allowed to develop. Because tonsil surfaces are comprised of fissures known as “tonsillar crypts”, accumulations of specific, protein-rich mouth debris collect in these crevices, aided by anaerobic bacteria growth, and eventually calcify into tonsil stones.

Facilitating tonsil stone formation within tonsillar crypts is the fact that the tonsils evolved to assist the immune system by trapping bacteria, viruses and other pathogens before they reach the bloodstream and organs. The crevices covering the surface of the tonsils are specially designed to filter the air we breathe and prevent harmful microorganisms from escaping into the interior of the body.

Unfortunately, humans have progressed beyond the essential need for tonsils and are now saddled with problems like tonsillitis and tonsil stones as aggravating by-products of our evolutionary past.

Top 10 Tonsil Stone Causes

  1. Recurring tonsillitis–frequently inflamed tonsils promote tonsil stone development because of the excess bacteria infecting the tonsils. Since tonsilloliths are primarily comprised of oral bacteria, repeating bouts with tonsillitis will only accelerate tonsil stone development
  2. Food particles–poor oral hygiene is a known contributor to tonsil stones. When someone does not brush, floss and rinse regularly, food particles collect in between teeth and in the tiny pockets existing where the teeth meet the gums. Decaying food bits in the mouth attract harmful bacteria that feed on the proteins in the food. When food particles are not removed in a timely manner, they help bacteria reproduce by the billions, which encourages tonsil stone formation as well as gingivitis-causing plaque and tooth decay.
  3. Mucus and phlegm–nasal passages that remain chronically irritated by allergies, sinusitis and other respiratory illnesses produce mass quantities of mucus that drip down the back of the throat. Unable to keep up with the excess mucus, the throat becomes a thriving breeding ground for anaerobic bacteria nourished by unrelieved accumulations of mucus and phlegm.
  4. Dry mouth/xerostomia–having a dry mouth not only prevents saliva from cleansing the mouth but also gives bacteria the perfect environment in which to proliferate. Anaerobic bacteria cannot live in oxygenated conditions so a mouth that is chronically dehydrated and stagnant encourages rapid production of bacteria that compose a large part of tonsil stones. Post nasal drip and dry mouth frequently accompany each other because illnesses that cause post nasal drip often create swelled nasal passages that make it hard to breathe normally through the nose.
  5. Dead white cells–because tonsils are associated with the immune system, any time the system detects a potential pathogen embedded in tonsillar crypts, it immediately floods that area with white blood cells, or macrophages. White cells are considered the natural “antibiotic” produced by the human body in response to viral and bacterial infections. Once these disease-attacking cells surround particles inside tonsil fissures and expend themselves, they simply die and add to the particle’s mass, whether it is a bit of food or tiny blobs of mucus.
  6. Abnormal oral pH levels–a fluid’s pH level determines whether it is acidic or alkaline. When the pH level of the mouth is too low–below 5.5–an acidic condition exists that encourages bacterial growth. In addition, an acidic environment will rapidly demineralize tooth enamel that leads to cavities, tooth decay and gum disease. Dry mouth is a major cause of low oral pH levels, along with poor oral hygiene and bad dietary choices. Normalizing oral acidic levels involves avoiding foods high in sugar, flossing and brushing twice a day and using oral hygiene products containing xylitol and sodium bicarbonate
  7. Excess blood cells and dead tissue–people who suffer from frequent mouth lesions such as canker sores or gum disease like gingivitis provides an extra food source for anaerobic bacteria. Blood cells and pieces of dead skin are rich in the proteins that bacteria love to consume.
  8. Oral fungal infections–oral thrush, medically referred to as Candida, is a fungal infection that arises in response to a compromised immune system. Reasons for developing thrush include being elderly; taking some kind of steroid medication or antibiotics; receiving radiation or chemotherapy; experiencing various health problems and being diabetic. Bacterial growth within a mouth that is suffering from a fungal infection is explosive, resulting in the rapid creation of tonsil stones.
  9. High dietary intake of dairy products–consuming large amounts of cheese and milk, which are full of proteins, often cause dry mouth, elevates oral acidic levels and assists in the calcification process that hardens tonsil stones. In addition, milk exacerbates mucus density lying in the back of the throat due to post nasal drip, adding to the difficulty of eliminating phlegm and harmful bacteria within the mouth.
  10. Anaerobic bacteria–primarily responsible for tooth decay, gum disease and the recurrence of tonsil stones, anaerobic bacteria is also the primary cause of halitosis. This type of oral bacteria excretes volatile sulfur compounds after consuming large amounts of proteins found in mouth detritus. Volatile sulfur compounds, or VSCs, are comprised of gases such as skatole and cadaverine, two malodorous fumes that smell like decaying flesh. These gram-negative anaerobes cluster around debris particles that find their way into tonsillar crypts where they swiftly reproduce and promote the creation of tonsil stones.

Solutions for Preventing Tonsil Stones

People who suffer from tonsils stones due to any of the above reasons can permanently put an end to experiencing repeated bouts of tonsils stones by undergoing a tonsillectomy. However, surgical removal of the tonsils and adenoids in adults is not recommended by physicians due to the possibility for complications to occur during and after the procedure. Because adult tonsils are larger and more rooted into the back of the throat, problems with excessive bleeding may occur during the operation and a week or two after the surgery when scabs around the incisions fall off. In addition, older adults experience more intense side effects from the anesthesia, such as difficult breathing and low blood pressure. Moreover, recovery times for patients of adult tonsillectomies are extended and the risk for infection is higher than normal as well.

Eliminating Tonsil Stone Causes

Eliminating tonsil stones with resorting to expensive, painful surgery means using powerfully effective oral hygiene products that contain ingredients formulated to kill anaerobic bacteria, hydrate the mouth with enhanced saliva flow and create an oxygenated condition in which bacteria cannot live. By producing a line of oral hygiene products that provides all of these ingredients plus a patented compound called OXYD-8, dentist and bacteriologist Dr. Harold Katz is able to present the TheraBreath Tonsil Stone Removal Kit. This kit supplies tonsil stone sufferers with mouthwashes, oral rinses, toothpastes, serums and mints infused with ingredients necessary to get rid of tonsil stones, bad breath, dry mouth and mucus from post nasal drip.

Results of Dr. Katz’s clinical investigations into tonsillolith creation revealed that by combining xylitol, sodium bicarbonate, OXYD-8 (Dr. Katz’s patented formula of proprietary stabilized oxychlor compounds), PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil and glycerin (a saliva enhancer), along with natural breath fresheners, people are able to stop tonsil stones from forming in tonsillar crypts, eliminate halitosis and raise oral pH levels. In fact, TheraBreath’s Tonsil Stone Removal kit promotes all aspects of oral health and can also significantly reduce the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.