Tonsil stones, also known as tonsilloliths, are calcified masses that can form on your palatine tonsils. There are three types of tonsils:
- palatine – on the sides of your throat
- pharyngeal – at the back of your throat
- lingual – found at the back, or base, of your tongue
When you first notice your tonsil stones and they’re small, you may be able to remove them with natural remedies. Bacteria and infection are the primary issues behind tonsil stones, so antibacterial and anti-inflammatory treatments may help to remove them.
1. Apple cider vinegar or any vinegar. Dilute with water and gargle. Vinegar is supposed to be able to break down the stones because of its acidic content.
3. Cotton swab or finger. If you can see the tonsil stone, you may be able to reach it with your finger or a cotton swab and scrape it off. Do this very carefully as it may cause additional infection if done aggressively or if the stone’s larger. Gargle with salt water immediately after you remove a tonsil stone this way. You shouldn’t do this unless the stone is easy to reach and small.
4. Coughing. Depending on the size of the stone, coughing could to dislodge a stone in some cases.
5. Saltwater. One study shows that rinsing with salt water is an effective treatment of oral wounds.
6. Yogurt. Eating yogurt that contains probiotics may be able to counteract the bacteria causing tonsil stones.
Note: Most of these natural remedies may only work on smaller tonsil stones or to help prevent them from occurring.