‘Why Do I Have Smelly, White Chunks In My Mouth?’


Karomaza |

By Cassie Shortsleeve

Before you totally panic, read this.

Every so often, you develop a health symptom so bizarre that it sends you into a total shame spiral—like discovering smelly, white chunks in your mouth. But guess what: We all have weirdo body issues that creep up and freak us out. We asked an expert and it turns out those chunks are actually totally normal—and not a cause for concern. Here’s what you need to know.

Why you can stop spiralling

Almost everyone gets them. Your tonsils have tons of tiny crevices where bacteria and dead cells can get trapped and harden and occasionally stick together in chunks of foul-smelling white stuff that you suddenly feel under the back of your tongue, says Dr. Brunilda Nazario, an associate medical director at WebMD. If you’ve had bouts of tonsillitis, you’re especially stones-prone.

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What to do now

Just spit those puppies out as they come! But if they really bother you, open up wide in front of a mirror. Toward the back of your throat, on both sides, you’ll see your tonsils—almond-shaped structures behind your back teeth. And right in front of them, there’s a skin fold where the stones hang. You can nudge them out with a cotton swab. More rarely, stones can grow large enough to make it hard for you to swallow, in which case you’ll need a doctor to remove them for you.

Want to know about your oral hygiene? Here’s 7 reasons why you could have bad breath, what your mouth really says about your health. 

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