There are many reasons for white spots on your tonsils. These spots can be treated with home remedies or medication.

You might be worried if you notice white spots on your tonsils suddenly. In many cases, however, it is possible to treat the root cause of the problem and avoid having your tonsils removed surgically.


White discoloration can appear on the tonsils only or around them. It may appear as streaks or blotches around or in the back of your throat.

You might feel your tonsils scratchy, and it may be difficult for you to swallow.

White spots on the tonsils are often accompanied by other symptoms such as:

  • Sneezing
  • A sore throat
  • coughing
  • A fever
  • Painful swallowing
  • throat discomfort
  • a stuffy nose
  • A headache
  • Body aches and Pains
  • swelling in the lymph nodes
  • bad breath

Sometimes you might also experience difficulty in breathing. If your tonsils become very swollen, this can partially block your airway.

White spots on tonsils

A common cause of white spots on the tonsils is an infection in your throat. There are many possible reasons your throat may appear white.

Mononucleosis infective

Infectious mononucleosis is caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. This infection spreads via saliva and is sometimes called “the kissing illness”.

Mono patients will often experience white spots of pus around their tonsils. You may also experience the following symptoms:

  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Headaches
  • Fever
  • Body rashes
  • swollen lymph nodes
  • fatigue

A rash may also be caused by penicillin family antibiotics that are prescribed for mono.

Strep throat

Streptococcal Pharyngitis is a contagious condition. It is caused by the bacteria Streptococcus pyogenes. It is most common in children but can also occur in adults and teenagers.

It can cause white spots or streaks in the throat. You may also experience the following symptoms:

  • weakness
  • Fatigue
  • The throat is susceptible to inflammation and swelling.
  • Trouble swallowing
  • A fever
  • A headache
  • Flu-like symptoms

Many bacteria can be spread by contact with drops from other people’s coughs and sneeze.


Tonsillitis refers to any infection of the tonsils. S. is the most common cause of this infection. This infection is usually caused by S.

Your tonsils can swell to try and fight the infection. Tonsillitis can also be characterized by the following:

  • A fever
  • A sore throat
  • Trouble swallowing
  • A headache

Oral thrush

Oral yeast thrush occurs when yeast infects your mouth. The most common reason is Candida albicans.

People with a suppressed immune system are more susceptible to yeast infections in their mouths. Uncontrolled diabetes or people who have been prescribed antibiotics are at higher risk. You can also get it by inhaling steroids without any spacers or rinsing.

White patches may also be found on the inside of your cheeks, on your tongue, and on the roof or side of the mouth.

Tonsil stone

Tonsil stones or tonsiliths are calcium deposits that develop in tiny cracks in the tonsils. They are caused by a buildup of food particles, mucus, and bacteria. These spots may appear as yellow or white spots on the tonsils.

Other symptoms include:

  • Bad breath
  • A sore throat
  • A sensation in the throat of a foreign object
  • Tonsil stones that are large can cause difficulty in swallowing

Is COVID-19 causing white spots on the tonsils?

Some case studies suggest that COVID-19 can cause an ulcerative lesion in the throat or mouth.

These lesions could be an early sign of COVID-19. While some people may not experience them, most suffer from other symptoms of COVID-19, such as fever or coughing.

To rule out COVID-19, it is recommended that you get tested if you experience a sore or other symptoms.

Are white spots on the tonsils a sign of an STD?

While sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), which are spread via oral sex, generally don’t cause white spots on your tonsils, these STDS can cause sores in your throat.

  • The Human Papillomavirus: Low-risk strains may cause non-cancerous, painless lesions in the throat.
  • Chlamydia: Though it’s uncommon, chlamydia can cause severe mouth sores.

A condom or another barrier can lower the chance of contracting or transmitting an oral STD.

Other causes

White spots on the tonsils are less common than:

  • Leukoplakia is a precancerous condition.
  • oral cancer

White spots on tonsils

White spots on the tonsils are more common in people with weak immune systems.

The specific condition may also have other risk factors. You may be at greater risk of getting strep throat or mono if you are in close quarters, such as in a childcare facility or school.

Diagnoses white spots on tonsils

Your doctor will discuss your symptoms and likely conduct a swab to remove any white spots.

The swab will be tested for pathogens. They will also conduct a physical exam and feel your lymph nodes gently to determine if they are tender or swollen.

Your doctor will use your test results to determine the best medication for you.

White spots on tonsils

The cause of the white spots will determine the treatment.

Infectious mononucleosis

Monotherapy is not something doctors often prescribe. For severe inflammation, your doctor might prescribe corticosteroids and over-the-counter medicines such as Ibuprofen.

Home care is the best form of treatment. Keep your body hydrated and restful while the infection progresses. If your spleen has enlargement, avoid contact sports.

Strep throat treatment

Your doctor will likely prescribe an antibiotic. To reduce swelling and pain, your doctor may recommend an antibiotic.

You should also get plenty of rest in addition to taking medication. Warm salt water can be gargled to reduce swelling and pain.

Oral thrush

Antifungal medication is usually prescribed by doctors to treat thrush.

Salt water can be used to rinse your mouth and prevent yeast from spreading.

Tonsil stones

Tonsil stones are usually not treated unless they cause severe discomfort. The stones will be eliminated by your body naturally.

At-home remedies include eating crackers and other crunchy foods, spraying salt water, or using salt water to remove the deposits.

For severe inflammation

Your doctor may recommend that your tonsils be removed if they are so inflamed that it is causing you trouble breathing.

This is called a tonsillectomy. This procedure is usually performed after all other treatments have failed. It would not be used to treat white spots by your doctor.

If you have a serious illness, it is best to have your tonsillectomies done after the illness has been resolved. However, they can be performed if you are suffering from an infection. In these cases, there is a higher risk of bleeding.

Most times, the procedure is performed as an outpatient. After the surgery, you will likely experience a sore throat for up to two weeks.

Other treatments

You can also try these other treatments:

  • Take 10 to 15 seconds to warm the salty water.
  • Warm fluids with no caffeine are recommended, such as chicken broth and hot herbal Tea with honey.
  • Avoid pollutants like cigarette smoke and car exhaust.
  • To relieve dry throats, you can use a humidifier. undefined


There could be many reasons for white spots on your tonsils. Most often, whitening in the throat is easily treated with prescribed medications or home therapies such as salt water gargling, resting, and drinking warm liquids.

It will depend on what the cause is. A doctor may recommend the removal of tonsils in cases where it is severe or recurring.

If you have white spots that persist for more than a few days, or if they make swallowing difficult or painful for you, you should contact your doctor immediately. An infection may be present that needs medical attention.

You should also seek medical attention if you have trouble breathing.

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