Examine the oropharynx by placing a mirror or tongue depressor on the dorsal surface of the tongue applying gentle pressure without having the patient stick their tongue out. You should be able to visualize the posterior pharyngeal wall, anterior and posterior pillars and the tonsillar crypt and tonsils, if present (Figure 25). These areas are normally not palpated unless there is a need.
Figure 25. Normal anatomy of the oropharyngeal area.