I’ve been off work for a couple of days with sore, inflamed tonsils that look and feel like golf balls. I’d offer to show you a photo, but you really don’t want to see that! I used to get chronic tonsillitis as a child and adolescent – but never to the point that I had to have a tonsillectomy thankfully. There’s some really important lymphatic tissue in those nodes that I’m happy to have still!
Tonsillitis is a nasty infection that can affect anyone, and is most likely to be viral or bacterial in origin. The tonsils become enlarged and inflamed, with a sore throat, difficulty swallowing, fever and headaches. Tonsillitis is extremely contagious due to the location of the infection in the mouth and care has to be taken to prevent spreading the illness to others. While the bacterial type of infection (a.k.a Strep throat) is often treated with antibiotics (especially in the case or recurrent infection), the pain and discomfort of both viral and bacterial tonsillitis can be relieved with some easy to make home remedies.
- Apple cider vinegar – You may be taking this as a daily tonic already on waking; the great news is that it’s also helpful to sip or gargle ACV and water throughout the day to help tonsil swelling subside. If you don’t have ACV at home, try gargling with warm salt water instead. Add 1 teaspoon of salt to 250ml of water and repeat every few hours to help clear infection and reduce inflammation.
- Warm Chamomile tea – Steep Chamomile tea (covered so you don’t lose the important, healing essential oil components) until just warm. Add manuka honey and a squeeze of lime to taste and sip slowly. Chamomile has mild analgesic properties that can relieve the pain of inflamed tonsils while manuka honey is soothing, healing and antiseptic.
- Propolis – In the form of sprays or tincture, propolis can help with healing and pain relief and is a potent anti-infective agent. Spray directly on inflamed tonsil areas or mix a few drops of tincture in a little water and gargle several times a day.
- Lime juice – The acid content of limes may be helpful in clearing some of the infected cells causing tonsillitis. The recipe below combines lime with other healing agents to speed up the healing and provide pain relief from tonsilitis symptoms.
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp manuka honey (or raw, organic honey)
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- pinch of salt
- Boil water and pour 250ml into a glass, put aside for a few minutes to cool slightly.
- Once temperature is suitable for drinking add lime, apple cider vinegar and honey, stirring until honey dissolves. Add spices and salt and mix well.
- Sip slowly while drink is hot, breathing aromas in deeply. Repeat several times daily.