Tonsils refer to masses of lymphoid tissues lying in the back of the throat, one on either side. Tonsils have a protective role and act as the first line of defense against the bacteria and virus that might get inhaled or ingested. Inflammation of tonsils, on one side or on both, is known as tonsillitis. Homeopathic medicines are highly effective for acute tonsillitis as well as for cases of recurrent tonsillitis. The primary aim of homeopathic medicines is to build a child’s immunity and prevent recurrent infections that lead to tonsillitis.
Homeopathic Treatment For Tonsillitis
Homeopathy is a highly advanced science that takes the inside-out approach to all disease, including tonsillitis, starting at the root cause and in time, curing the condition without the need for surgical intervention. Tonsillitis is treated most efficiently by homeopathy as it follows a two-step procedure to deal with tonsillitis. In the first step, homeopathic medicines are given to treat the acute symptoms of tonsillitis. In the second step, homeopathy targets the chronic tendency toward recurrent tonsillitis. Homeopathic medicines improve the body’s immunity and make it strong enough to fight infection quickly.
In many cases of mild to moderate cases of tonsillitis, homeopathy has shown excellent results and helped avoid surgery.
Top Homeopathic Medicines For Tonsillitis
The medicines prominently indicated for tonsillitis treatment in homeopathy are Belladonna, Merc Sol, Hepar Sulph, Calcarea Carb, Psorinum, Merc Iodatus Ruber, Merc Iodatus Flavus and Streptococcinum.
1. Belladonna – For Acute Tonsillitis With Red Swollen Painful Tonsils
Belladonna is the top recommended medicine for treating acute tonsillitis. The key indication for its use is red, swollen enlarged tonsils with marked pain. The pain is worse while swallowing mainly liquids and throat remains dry. Fever with intense heat in the body accompanies the above symptoms. Heat, constriction (tightening) and lump in the throat may also be felt.
When and How to use Belladonna?
For acute tonsillitis, it is an infallible medicine to be used when tonsils are red, swollen with excessive throat pain. Give it in the very beginning in such cases, it will soothe throat pain, reduce tonsil inflammation and cut short recovery period of tonsillitis. One may take this medicine in 30C potency three to four times a day in the beginning at minimum three-hour interval. When relief ensues, gradually reduce the dose to two times a day.
2. Merc Sol – For Pain In Tonsils Extending To Ears
Merc Sol is an extremely effective medicine for treating tonsillitis with pain in tonsils extending to ears especially when swallowing. The nature of pain is mainly stitching type. On examination of the throat, the tonsils look dark red and ulcers or white spots on tonsils can be present. Excessive salivation is also observed. Foul odour from the mouth is present.
When and How to use Merc Sol?
Merc Sol is an ideal prescription for cases presenting with tonsil pain radiating to ear while swallowing along with increased salivation and foul breath. This medicine works wonders in 30C potency. Use of Merc Sol 30C should be limited to once or twice a day.
3. Hepar Sulph – For Infected Tonsils and Quins
Hepar Sulph proves very successful in treating infected tonsils with pus points on tonsils and quinsy (also known as peritonsillar abscess in which pus accumulates behind the tonsils). The symptoms to look out for using it are stitching pain in the throat and pain from throat radiating to the ear. There is intense pain while talking or swallowing. Sensation of a lump or splinter (a sharp piece of glass or wood) stuck in the throat is felt. The person may hawk up yellow mucus.
When and How to use Hepar Sulph?
Use of Hepar Sulph is considered in cases where tonsils are infected with pus points on tonsils or pus collection behind tonsils (quinsy). Though it can be used in various potencies, 30C is most preferred. Its use is recommended in mild cases only but in severe cases with extremely enlarged tonsils (with excessive pus behind them) blocking the throat, drainage of pus and administration of antibiotics may be required. So, urgent help should be taken from allopathic mode of treatment. It is best to take this medicine for infected tonsils or quinsy only after consulting a homeopath who can best judge if the condition is mild and controllable with homeopathic medicines or severe requiring help from conventional mode.
4. Calcarea Carb – To Treat Recurrent Tonsillitis
Calcarea Carb is an excellent medicine for treating recurrent tonsillitis. After recovery from acute tonsillitis phase, this medicine can be used as an intercurrent remedy (treatment for some chronic disease that is hindering cure of some other ailment) to treat tendency to have recurrent tonsillitis. An indicative symptom for use of Calcarea Carb is the tendency to catch cold frequently. Even slight exposure to cold air affects the throat and tonsils in cases needing this remedy.
When and How to take Calcarea Carb?
Calcarea Carb is mainly prescribed to treat tendency to have recurrent tonsillitis. It will help to build immunity to fight with throat infections naturally. It can be used in low (30C) as well high potencies (like 200C and 1M). The dose varies from case to case. Usually in 30C potency, it can be used once or twice a week. But high potencies are usually given on a weekly (once a week) basis or in some cases fortnightly (one dose every 15 days). Its best to consult a homeopathic expert for right potency selection and repetition of this medicine.
5. Psorinum – To Treat Tendency To Recurrent Infected Tonsillitis
Psorinum is very effective in boosting immunity to prevent recurrent infected tonsillitis (tonsillitis with pus points on tonsils) and quinsy (pus accumulation behind tonsils). These medicines reduce susceptibility to recurrent throat infections. Those needing it have markedly swollen tonsils, pain with swallowing, and thick mucus in the throat. Along with this, there is foul-smelling salivation and hawking of cheesy mucus bits having bad smell and taste. There is recurrent pus formation behind the tonsils.
When and How to use Psorinum?
It can be used in persons who suffer from infected tonsillitis repeatedly. Use of this medicine will build immunity to prevent recurrence of such infections. Psorinum is mainly used in 200C or even higher potencies like 1M. It is a slightly strong medicine, so it is used just once or twice a month usually. For correct potency and dose, kindly consult a homeopathic doctor.
6. Merc Iodatus Ruber – For Left-sided Tonsillitis
Merc Iodatus Ruber is a majorly indicated medicine for treating left-sided tonsillitis. Indications for its use are swollen tonsils with dark red fauces (area between cavity of mouth and pharynx) on the left side, sensation of lump in the throat and disposition to hawk.
When and How to use Merc Iodatus Ruber?
A person having left-sided tonsil inflammation can take this medicine. 30C potency of this medicine twice a day is the right dose to begin with.
7. Merc Iodatus Flavus – For Right-sided Tonsillitis
Merc Iodatus Ruber is prominently indicated for tonsillitis of right side. The guiding features pointing towards its use are swollen tonsil on the right side, sticky mucus in throat and constant inclination to swallow. Other symptoms that may arise are the feeling of a lump in the throat with relief setting in by taking cold liquids.
When and How to use Merc Iodatus Flavus?
This medicine is specific for tonsillitis on right side. The usual recommended dose is two times a day in 30C potency.
8. Streptococcinum – For Managing Strep Throat
Streptococcinum is a specific medicine for managing strep throat infection. The symptoms to use this medicine are enlarged, swollen tonsils, infected tonsils, and recurrent tonsillitis. The tonsils may get infected with purulent (pus) matter.
When and How to use Streptococcinum?
This medicine is specifically reserved for managing cases of strep throat along with conventional mode of treatment. As strep throat has severe symptoms and may lead to serious complications, it is best to use this medicine only after consulting a homeopathic practitioner. After studying the case history thoroughly, the doctor will recommend its potency and repetition.
Note The above medicines can be taken in mild to moderate cases of acute tonsillitis for about a week. If condition does not improve, it is advised to consult a homeopathic physician to decide the further course of action. In case of sore throat with very high fever, extreme difficulty in swallowing, difficulty in breathing and speaking, extreme weakness, pus formation on/ behind tonsils or in case of strep throat, do not self-medicate and take urgent help from doctor.
Causes Behind Tonsillitis
Viral infections: Tonsillitis mainly arises from viral infections, like influenza virus, adenovirus (responsible for causing common cold and sore throat), rhinovirus (that commonly cause common cold), parainfluenza virus, enterovirus, Epstein – Barr virus.
Bacterial infection: Tonsillitis may also be the result of a bacterial infection. The most common bacteria that cause tonsillitis is Group A beta-hemolytic streptococcus. Infection of tonsils with this bacteria is popularly called strep throat that leads to inflammation and pain in the throat and tonsils. Strep throat is highly contagious and spreads quickly from one person to another through cough, touch or sneeze. It is very common in school-going children and among teenagers. Major complications may arise in strep throat infection if not treated properly well in time. These include rheumatic fever (inflammatory condition affecting joints, heart nervous system and skin) and post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis (kidney inflammation).
Bacteria other than this however can also cause tonsillitis, for example, staphylococcus aureus, chlamydia pneumonia, mycoplasma pneumonia,etc.
Though tonsillitis can affect anyone but certain factors increase the risk
1. Young age: Tonsillitis is more common among young children. Very young children are at high risk of tonsillitis from viral infection and those between 5 yrs to 15 yrs are prone to get tonsillitis from bacterial infections. However, tonsillitis can occur at any age though chances are less as compared to children. The reason is the immune function of tonsils declines after puberty which may be the reason for reduced chances of tonsillitis in adults.
2. Germ exposure: Excessive germ exposure in children puts them at risk of tonsillitis. Children remain in close contact with same age group kids in school, parks, playways, etc that exposes them more to virus/bacteria that causes tonsillitis.
How Does Tonsillitis Spread?
Tonsillitis is very contagious and spreads from one person to another via direct contact. A person with tonsillitis can spread the infection spreading agents in the air as well as nearby objects every time he coughs or sneezes. Tonsillitis may also spread via direct inhalation of the air droplets carrying infection-causing agents or indirectly by touching these infected objects and then touching the nose/mouth with the same hands. One may also contract tonsillitis via kissing an infected person or sharing utensils of a person having tonsillitis.
Tonsils are oval-shaped lumps of lymphoid tissue lying at the back of the throat, one on either side. These act as a first line of defense mechanism of our body against an illness. Tonsils trap the germs (bacteria or viruses) that may enter throat via nose or mouth and cause an infection. Tonsils produce lymphocytes which kill the virus/bacteria entering the throat. In the process of fighting such infections again and again, the tonsils also get vulnerable to get infected and at some point they actually get infected and inflamed.
Signs And Symptoms Of Tonsillitis
The main signs and symptoms include red, swollen tonsils along with pain in throat which is the first indicating feature of tonsillitis. The pain usually gets worse while swallowing. The pain may be one-sided or appear on both sides depending upon which tonsil is involved. The other symptoms that may attend are difficult swallowing, fever, bad/fetid breath, headache, scratchy voice, ear pain and neck pain. White/yellow pus spots may also appear on the tonsils. The glands in the neck may be swollen and tender. In chronic cases, tonsil stones (debris collection on tonsils) may form. In young kids excessive drooling of saliva, increased irritability/fussiness, vomiting, low appetite and stomach pain can be observed.
Types Of Tonsillitis
Acute Tonsillitis: In this type, the symptoms remain for 3 to 4 days but in some cases may linger for 2 weeks.
Chronic Tonsillitis: A person suffers from acute tonsillitis multiple times in a year for short periods of time
Recurrent Tonsillitis: The symptoms last for longer time, more than two weeks.
Complications Of Tonsillitis
Complications associated with tonsillitis include
1. Middle ear infection
2. Difficulty in breathing
3. Obstructive sleep apnea: Breathing is disrupted during sleep
4. Peritonsillar abscess: Collection of pus behind the tonsils is referred to as peritonsillar abscess, also known as quinsy. It is a rare, but very serious complication of tonsillitis. It can grow large in size and block the throat resulting in difficult breathing and swallowing. If not treated, the infection can spread to neck, chest or lungs.
5. Tonsillar cellulitis: Spread of infection deeply to nearby tissues
6. In tonsillitis with group A streptococcal bacteria i.e. strep throat infection, the serious complications include rheumatic fever and post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis.
Preventive Measures To Help Decrease Tonsillitis Risk
1. Maintain hygiene: Wash hands often, especially before you eat.
2. Sharing of utensils should be avoided.
3. Maintain distance from someone who has tonsillitis and stay back home if you are having tonsillitis to prevent its spread to others.
4. A person with tonsillitis should cover the nose when he/she sneezes to prevent spreading the infection
Home Remedies Along With Medicines
1. Take proper rest
2. Drink plenty of warm fluids
3. Adults can gargle with warm salt water
4. Eat soft food and avoid hard ones