Who hasn’t had a sore throat before? Most throat problems are minor and go away on their own, but sometimes they can lead to more serious throat disorders such as tonsillitis, which can be acute or chronic.
The tonsils are fleshy pieces of tissue located in the back of the throat behind the tongue which help to fight infections when we are very young. As we get older, the tonsils become redundant and do not maintain any immune function. However, if bacteria or viruses contaminate the tonsils, persistent inflammation and swelling of the tonsils (or tonsillitis) can occur.
Tonsillitis often recovers in a few days and treatments are designed to manage symptoms. This includes gargling salt water, drinking warm liquids, sucking on lozenges, and taking over-the-counter painkillers. Antibiotics may also be prescribed by your doctor.
Tonsillectomy, or surgery to remove the tonsils may occasionally be recommended when there is chronic or recurring infections of the tonsils. This is a simple operation that is often done as a day surgery procedure.