My 5 year old daughter, Omolola, had a Tonsillectomy, Adenoidectomy and Ear Tubes surgery recently. I had searched the internet prior to her surgery and didn't find many encouraging stories and while it's a tough procedure, it has drastically changed her life for the better! Before surgery, her tonsils and adenoids were huge and she was frequently getting sick, getting ear infections and had sleep apnea.
This surgery has allowed her to now sleep better, wake up happier (she's not tired from constant pauses in breathing) and speak and hear much clearer.
I made notes of our experience and wanted to share to hopefully help others who are facing this experience.
Please note: I am not a medical professional and you should ALWAYS consult a medical professional for any questions or advice.
Here are the notes, tips, and results from our experience with a Tonsillectomy, Adenoidectomy, and Ear Tubes. Lola's procedure was done by Dr Bower at Arkansas Children's Hospital Northwest.
1. ACKNOWLEDGE THEIR FEELINGS: the first couple of days are rough. Lola kept asking why we let them put her to sleep and wanted to know why they couldn’t put her tonsils back in because her throat hurt without them. After the pain subsided, so did those feelings! She hasn’t mentioned it once since she’s been feeling better! Let them know that their feelings are valid!
2. HUMIDIFIER: I ran a humidifier for 10 days straight in her room. It stopped the air from being so dry, which stopped her throat from doing the same and causing more pain. Be sure and change the water frequently to prevent mold.
3. DISTRACTIONS: iPads, toys, books, etc… are great ways to keep their mind off the pain for a while! Bluey and coloring in her own coloring book helped!
4. REST: They will want a lot of cuddles. Hold them when you can and in between med times, allow them to just rest.
5. GIVE MEDS ON TIME: For the first few days especially, follow the doctor's orders and give the meds when you’re supposed to. You will have to wake up throughout the night and wake them up to give them, but you don’t want that pain to hit them. This is a VERY PAINFUL procedure! Do NOT skip medication times. It is very important to give meds on time to stay ahead of the pain.
6. DAY 3-5: Be prepared for bad breath and possibly scabs. This is normal. The breath will get back to normal as the throat heals. Lola spit up a scab, and it’s expected.
7. STAY HYDRATED: It’s going to hurt, but try to get them to drink as much as they can tolerate. A few sips periodically will prevent dehydration. Lola preferred slushies the first couple of days but also had Gatorade, Pediasure, water, Body Armour, and milk (just a little because it increases mucus). Popsicles help also.
8. EATING: Let them eat if they’re up to it. Lola was eating macaroni, mashed potatoes and meat the first day. ABSOLUTELY NO CRUNCHY, HARD, OR SPICY FOODS! No matter how much they beg for these foods, DO NOT give it to them! You don’t want to cause the throat to bleed! In the case this does happen, go straight to the ER! Eating is good and helps build strength. Lola only wanted macaroni and potatoes the first few days and was eating a few hours after the surgery!
9. LOVE: They’re going to be irritable. Love on them! Hold them! Sing! Just be there!
1. She’s sleeping better (she used to snore and had sleep apnea).
2. She wakes up so much happier as she’s not waking up throughout the night from constant pauses in breathing.
3. Speaking & hearing clearer
4. Eating more
I kept a day-by-day account of everything so I'll share my notes here: