Tonsillitis: How to get rid of them naturally

Tonsillitis is an inflammation of the glands of the throat, which results in a sore throat and may be caused by either viruses or bacteria. Most cases of tonsillitis resolve in a few days without antibiotic medication.

Whether viral or bacterial, tonsillitis is transmitted most commonly from one person to another by social contact such as droplets in the air from sneezing. Most of the time, tonsillitis is caused by a viral infection.

Bacterial tonsillitis can be caused by Streptococcus pyogenes, the organism that causes strep throat. If left untreated, strep throat may lead to a more serious condition called rheumatic fever, which can affect the heart several years later…

If you suspect you have tonsillitis, visit your doctor for a proper diagnosis and treatment for the condition. Your doctor will conduct a physical exam and check your mouth and throat for signs of inflammation, redness, white spots on the tonsils and swollen lymph nodes. You may also be required to do a blood test, a swab culture of the throat, a strep test and/or a test for mononucleosis.

Symptoms of tonsillitis include:

  • A sore throat
  • Difficulty feeding (in babies)
  • Pain with swallowing
  • Fever
  • A headache
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • A cough
  • Hoarseness
  • A runny nose
  • Redness of the tonsils and throat
  • Tenderness in the glands of the neck (swollen lymph glands)
  • White patches on the tonsils
  • Redness of the eyes
  • Rash
  • Ear pain (caused by nerves that go to the back of the throat and also go to the ear).

13 Home Remedies for Tonsillitis

Tonsillitis is generally treated by over-the-counter pain medication such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. In addition to this, the best course of action for swollen tonsils would be traditional and probably the most widely used of all home remedies, the saltwater gargle; this helps to ease the throat pain and reduce the swelling. Saltwater helps in cleaning out the mouth and throat and prevents the buildup of further infection on the surface of the tonsils.
  1. Sage: Make a hot tea of the herb and use it a gargle
  2. Cucumber: Mix the pure juice of the cucumber with honey.
  3. Turmeric: Turmeric is packed full of anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. Just a pinch in a warm glass of almond or coconut milk is an excellent way to fight an infection located in the throat.
  4. Ginger: Plenty of people use ginger tea to treat an infected throat. That is because ginger is both anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial. Crush a small cube of ginger into a cup of boiling water and let steep until the beverage is comfortable to drink. Drink it up and one’s problems will be gone.
  5. Lemon juice: Consuming lemon juice may help boost the immune system and help with many symptoms associated with tonsillitis. Fresh lemon juice is best, just drink as much as one feels comfortable.
  6. Onion juice: You do not need to drink onion juice, just gargle with it. I know it might sound disgusting to some, but the anti-microbial properties found in onions will work their magic in no time.
  7. Lime is one of the most popular natural remedies for tonsillitis. Mix fresh lime juice in warm water with honey and salt and sip on this combination for pain relief from swollen tonsils.
  8. Boil milk and add a pinch of turmeric powder and black pepper powder. Drink this concoction before sleeping for a minimum of three nights in a row for an effective inflamed tonsils remedy.
  9. Drink freshly squeezed beetroot, carrot, or cucumber juice daily to boost your body's immune system and fight the infection more efficiently. You can have these juices individually or mix them together for the best results.
  10. Boil fenugreek seeds in water for half an hour. Cool and strain and use this water to gargle with. Fenugreek has antibacterial properties that make it an excellent cure for tonsillitis.
  11. Boil fresh figs and grind them into a paste. Apply this paste on the external area of the throat to cool down a rash and redness of the throat and provide pain relief.
  12. Chamomile tea mixed with lemon and honey is an age-old natural remedy for tonsillitis. The chamomile acts as a relaxant and reduces stress and anxiety caused by tonsillitis along with treating symptoms of the condition such as pain and soreness. 
  13. Apply alum powder on the surface of the tonsils or gargle with alum and water. These are effective home remedies for tonsillitis that can reduce inflammation and prevent further infections.
Since tonsillitis is a self-limiting condition and tends to resolve itself, using home remedies for pain relief is the logical option. However, if you have tried treating tonsillitis at home and the pain has not reduced at all after a few days, consult your doctor for a course of medication. Tonsillitis caused by bacterial infections requires a course of antibiotics that your doctor can prescribe. Chronic tonsillitis may not respond well to home remedies and may require more drastic measures such as surgery or tonsillectomy.

Recommended Diet for Tonsillitis

If you suffer from tonsillitis, it is suggested that you switch to a liquid only diet for a few days. Ideally, a fruit juice fast for three to five days can help boost immunity and fight off any infection. Drink only orange juice and water until the painful symptoms subside.

After this, you can move on to an all-fruit diet for the next few days before slowly introducing solids back into your daily meal plan. Ensure that your meals are balanced with a healthy combination of fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and nuts to boost the body's immunity after the infection.

Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration and to keep the throat moistened and free from itching. However, avoid carbonated drinks and too much hot tea and coffee as these can aggravate the condition.

A sore throat can be soothed with ice cream and popsicles. While this may sound strange, ice cream can calm a sore throat and also be swallowed easily. Children and adults who have undergone a tonsillectomy are made to eat ice cream during their recovery period.

You need to avoid foods that are very sour or spicy when suffering from tonsillitis. Items such as hot sauces, yogurt, sour cream, and fried foods irritate the throat and can cause more inflammation and pain.


  1. Aggarwal BB, Sundaram C, Malani N, Ichikawa H. Curcumin: the Indian solid gold. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2007;595:1-75. Review. PubMed PMID: 17569205.

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