What is Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils?

Tonsils are a pair of lymph nodes present on each side of the back of the throat. The main function of tonsil is to prevent the body from infections, but in some cases they themselves become infected. This results in what is called as Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils. This condition is quite common in children and can range from early childhood up to early puberty. Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils is a contagious disease and can spread very quickly through air.

What is Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils

Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils can be caused by a variety of viruses and bacteria that are common in the environment, especially the streptococcus variety. The main symptoms of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils are sore throat, swelling of the tonsils, and fever. It is a self limiting condition and usually the symptoms remit within a week or so of their onset.

What Causes Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils & is it Contagious?

As stated, Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils can be caused by a variety of different viruses and bacteria found in the environment. The virus that causes common colds can cause Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils or bacteria causing strep throat can also result in development of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils, but majority of cases of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils are due to streptococcal bacterial infection.

Epstein-Barr virus is yet another common cause for Tonsillitis or Tonsil Infection. As stated above, Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils is a very contagious infection and can spread quite quickly. This is more so in children who come in close contact with their peers in school or daycare who may have had the infection thus making them vulnerable to Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils.

What are the Symptoms of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils?

Some of the symptoms of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils are:

How is Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils Diagnosed?

Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils is a condition that can be pretty easily diagnosed. The physician may hear out the symptoms and do a general physical examination of the throat. A throat culture may also be obtained to confirm the diagnosis of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils.

How is Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils Treated?

For mild cases of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils, no treatment is required and the symptoms go away on their own in a week's time. This is more so if it is caused by a virus that causes common cold. For more severe cases of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils, antibiotics may be prescribed for eliminating the bacteria causing the infection. It is recommended that the patient complete the full course of antibiotics to prevent any recurrences. In some cases, the physician may recommend surgery to remove the tonsils for treatment of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils.

The surgery to remove the tonsils is called as tonsillectomy. This was a very common practice a few years back, but nowadays it is recommended only for people who have recurrent or chronic bouts of Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils or in patients who are not treated effectively by conservative treatments. Pain medications may also be given to get rid of the throat pain caused due to Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils.

How to Prevent Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils?

The best way to prevent getting infected with Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils is to stay away from people who may have had this condition. Wash hands thoroughly in case if an individual comes in contact with another individual with a sore throat or is coughing or sneezing frequently so as to prevent from getting Tonsillitis or Infection of Tonsils.

Also Read:

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD, FFARCSI

Last Modified On: September 7, 2017

Pain Assist Inc.

Pramod Kerkar
  Note: Information provided is not a substitute for physician, hospital or any form of medical care. Examination and Investigation is necessary for correct diagnosis.

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