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Treatment of tonsillitis begins with preventing the spread of the virus or bacterium that can cause it. Prevention measures include avoiding contact with people who have tonsillitis. Preventive measures also include covering your mouth and nose with your elbow or a tissue when you sneeze or cough and washing hands frequently with soap and water for at least 15 seconds. It is also important to avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth, with unwashed hands which can transmit the viruses and bacteria from your hands into your body.
It is a good idea not to share glasses, silverware, or personal items, such as mouth guards and toothbrushes and to regularly disinfect surfaces that commonly harbor bacteria and viruses, such as telephones and computer keyboards, especially if they are shared.
Once a person has tonsillitis, treatment includes measures to help keep up strength and hydration and to relieve symptoms so that one is comfortable enough to get the rest needed to recover without developing complications.
Treatment includes plenty of rest and using over-the-counter medications, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen as directed to ease symptoms, such as fever, headache and sore throat. Aspirin should never be given to children or adolescents who have a fever because of the risk of developing a life-threatening disorder called Reye's syndrome. Good care also includes drinking plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration and gargling with warm salted water to ease sore throat.
Antibiotics are only prescribed for tonsillitis that is caused by a bacterial infection, such as in strep throat. The most effective antibiotics for strep throat is generally penicillin. Antibiotics are ineffective against viruses that cause tonsillitis. However, antibiotics may be prescribed if a person develops a secondary bacterial infection as a complication of viral tonsillitis, such as a bacterial sinusitis.
Rarely, surgery may be recommended for a person with repeated severe bouts of tonsillitis or tonsillitis that lead to complications, such as peritonsillar abscess. This is called a tonsillectomy, the surgical removal of the tonsils.
The following treatments are listed for Tonsilitis in our knowledge base:
Alternative treatments, home remedies, other other complementary therapies that have been listed as possibly helpful for Tonsillitis in various sources may include:
Some of the drugs and medications used in the treatment of Tonsillitis may include:
Unlabelled alternative drug treatments for Tonsillitis may include:
Review the treatment information pages for various causes of Tonsillitis:
More causes: not all possible causes for Tonsillitis are listed above; for a full list refer to causes of Tonsillitis.
Only your doctor can advise whether any of these treatments are appropriate for your specific medical situation. Always discuss all treatment options with your doctor before making a decision, including whether to start or discontinue any treatment plan.
The following list of conditions have 'Tonsillitis' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.
Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Tonsillitis or choose View All.
The following list of medical conditions have 'Tonsillitis'
or similar listed as a medical complication in our database.
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