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Tonsillitis is an infection of the throat caused by Virus or Bacteria. It is one of the common problems in children especially preschoolers. The mildest tonsillitis goes away on its own. But it is advisable to consult a paediatrician near you if the child has throat pain along with fever, cold, runny nose or cough.

There are three types of Tonsillitis

  • Acute Tonsillitis – In these symptoms usually last for 3-4 days.
  • Recurrent Tonsillitis – In this type, the symptoms reoccur several times in a year. You should consult a child specialist for treatment.
  • Chronic Tonsillitis – It is a case of prolonged tonsil infection. In chronic tonsillitis case, if tonsils

Common Symptoms

Some of the early signs for tonsilitis include-

  • A sore throat
  • Fever
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Bad breath
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue and Lethargy
  • Pain in ear or stomach
  • Swollen lymph nodes (glands under the jaw)
  • Headache


Tonsilitis is caused either by Virus or Bacteria.

  • Adenoviruses
  • Influenza virus
  • Epstein-Barr virus
  • Parainfluenza viruses
  • Enteroviruses
  • Herpes simplex virus

How to Prevent It

Antibiotic can only be prescribed if the infection is caused by Bacteria. As antibiotic kills bacteria and not virus. The treatment for tonsillitis caused by Viral infection include-

  • Drinking a lot of water – though it would be difficult to swallow water/fluids drinking water will keep the child hydrated and can help with headache and tiredness.
  • Gargles using lukewarm water - It will provide relief to the sore throat.
  • Paracetamol or Ibuprofen for pain relief
  • Plenty of rest

Tonsillitis can be prevented by maintaining a good hygiene habit.

  • Ask your child to wash hands regularly after eating anything, coming from outside etc
  • Do not share the same utensils/bottle for eating food or drinking water.
  • Do not share personal items like a toothbrush with anyone
  • Stay away from children who have a cold, cough or a sore throat