Tonsillitis is a severe infection and inflammation of the tonsils. Tonsils are balls of lymphatic tissue in the rear of the mouth and are part of the immune system. There are three types of tonsillitis: acute, sub acute, and chronic. Each type is caused by a different reason and has specific symptoms. If left untreated, tonsillitis can lead to several complications.
The three types of tonsillitis are caused by different reasons. Acute tonsillitis is caused by a bacterium or a virus. Sub acute tonsillitis is caused when the bacterium Actinomyces invades the body. This type of tonsillitis can last anywhere from three weeks to three months. Chronic tonsillitis is also caused by a bacterium. This type of tonsillitis can last for years. Some of the bacterium that causes tonsillitis is the same type that causes strep throat. Fungi or parasites also lead to the development of tonsillitis.
The main symptom of tonsillitis is a sore throat. The tonsils may appear to have white or red spots on them that may bleed. These marks are visible sites of bacteria growth or spots of inflammation. Other symptoms include: bad breath, swollen lymph nodes, nasal congestion, fever, difficulty swallowing, headache, and abdominal pain.