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The common causes of tonsil stones

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  • People who fail to floss or brush their teeth regularly have a higher risk of developing tonsil stones
  • When you develop a runny nose or a sinus infection, excess mucus is produced, which can drip to the back of your throat, where debris can become trapped in the crypts. This then solidifies and transforms into tonsil stones

Tonsil stones form because of a mix of controllable and uncontrollable factors. Read on to learn which ones currently match your lifestyle so you can make the necessary adjustments to prevent these annoying deposits from forming.

Ignoring poor dental hygiene is often to blame

In most cases, poor dental hygiene can be attributed to the formation of tonsil stones. This is because when you fail to brush your teeth and floss regularly, food particles have a higher chance of becoming embedded in the crypts of your tonsils.

According to Medical News Today, people who fail to floss or brush their teeth regularly have a higher risk of developing tonsils stones. In fact, tonsil stone-forming bacteria are also to blame for tooth decay, oral infections and diseases of the gums.1

This should be a cause for alarm, considering that the status of your oral health could affect your overall well-being in ways that you may not realize, such as:

  • Heart disease and stroke — According to one study, certain bacteria that cause oral infections can enter your bloodstream and cause atherosclerotic plaque formation in your blood vessels or arteries.2
  • Dementia — A study found that patients with chronic periodontitis have a higher risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer's disease compared to those who do not have this condition.3
  • Respiratory disease — In a study published in the Journal of Medicine and Life, evidence highly suggests that poor dental hygiene can lead to the development of respiratory diseases such pneumonia.4

Sinus infections can cause mucus to stick in your tonsils

The human body has membranes in your mouth, nose and throat that produce mucus, a sticky substance that helps trap bacteria and other harmful microbes before they enter your body and cause an infection.5

But when you develop a runny nose or a sinus infection, excess mucus is produced, which can drip to the back of your throat, where they can become trapped in the crypts. They then solidify and transform into tonsil stones. Certain situations, like having allergies, flu or the common cold can also lead to nasal drips.6

Minor risk factors that can contribute to tonsil stones

Aside from the causes mentioned above, tonsil stones can form due to the following circumstances:

  • Having large tonsils — This likely means you have large and deep crypts as well, which increases your risk of catching food particles, calcium and other substances.7
  • Medications — In a New York Times article, Dr. Harold Katz, a Los Angeles-based dentist, says that certain prescription medicines can make your mouth dry, which allows anaerobic bacteria to reproduce rapidly.8
  • Age — According to Australia’s Health Direct website, this condition is more common in adults than children.9

MORE ABOUT TONSIL STONES

Tonsil Stones: Introduction

What Are Tonsil Stones?

Tonsil Stones Symptoms

Tonsil Stones Causes

Tonsil Stones Treatment

How to Get Rid of Tonsil Stones

Tonsil Stones Removal

Tonsil Stones Prevention

Tonsil Stones FAQ

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