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Dairy & Tonsil Stones

author image Diane Marks
Diane Marks started her writing career in 2010 and has been in health care administration for more than 30 years. She holds a registered nurse license from Citizens General Hospital School of Nursing, a Bachelor of Arts in health care education from California University of Pennsylvania and a Master of Science in health administration from the University of Pittsburgh.
Dairy & Tonsil Stones
Dairy does not cause tonsil stones.

While dairy products do not cause tonsil stones, an allergy to dairy may cause similar symptoms as tonsil stones. Tonsil stones are small stone-shaped balls that form in the tonsils from trapped debris that builds up in the tonsils. The New York Times states that this condition is not fully understood, but it is most likely not a medical concern. If you develop symptoms associated with tonsil stones after drinking milk, talk with your doctor.

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Tonsils and Stones

Just like your kidneys, the tonsils have various spaces in the organ where bacteria and matter can accumulate. The tonsils are located in the back of the throat and are similar to your lymph nodes. The tonsils help the immune system fight infectious organisms that enter the throat, according to the American Academy of Otolaryngology. Tonsil stones, also called tonsilloliths, form from captured debris that calcifies over time. Pressing on the tonsils may dislodge tonsil stones, forcing them into your mouth. Common symptoms of tonsil stones include bad breath, sore throat and the feeling of a lump in your throat.

Dairy Products

Dairy products do not increase your chances of developing tonsil stones, but if you’re allergic to milk proteins, you may develop similar symptoms in your throat. According to, milk is one of the most common food allergens that can cause a wide range of symptoms. During a milk allergy, immunoglobulin E antibodies and histamine are produced that increase the amount of mucus and swelling that develop in the throat. Excess mucus created in the sinuses can cause post-nasal drip, the constant dripping in the back of the throat that can lead to bad breath, sore throat and the feeling of a lump in the throat.


Unless your tonsils are inflamed and cause a health risk, your doctor will leave your tonsils alone. If you’re diagnosed with tonsillitis, antibiotics may be used to kill the bacteria causing the infection. If your symptoms are the result of a milk allergy, you will need to implement an elimination diet. The only treatment for a milk allergy is to avoid all foods and beverages that contain milk proteins.

When to See a Doctor

If you develop swelling in the throat, fever, body chills, the inability to breathe and begin to cough up blood, call your doctor right away. A severe allergic reaction may cause an increased heart rate, a drop in blood pressure and lightheadedness. If you develop these symptoms, call 911.

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