Having your tonsils out as an adult can be an inconvenient process. However, for some adults it can pay off in the long run, especially if you suffer constantly from sore throats or tonsillitis.
- Skill level:
Assess your history and if your tonsils have been a problem. Most tonsillectomies (removal of the tonsils) are brought about because of some reoccurring problem with sore throats or tonsillitis. If you suffer from severe soreness of the throat on a constant basis, four to five times a year or more, then you may want to have your tonsils removed.
Talk with your doctor. If you haven't already talked to your doctor about the possibility of a tonsillectomy, do so. Your doctor can help you decide if this is the best move for you, and usually will agree if you suffer from chronic sore throats. The doctor can then refer you to an ear, nose and throat specialist who will check you out and perform the procedure.
See the specialist. Once you are referred to a specialist, follow through and get an appointment to be seen. If your sore throat goes away, don't assume a specialist can't help you. She may still opt to remove your tonsils after reviewing your records, as a preventive measure.
Take time off work. If the specialist decides a tonsillectomy is best and schedules you for a surgery, you need to prepare for it and schedule ahead the time you'll need off of work. Recovery usually takes about one to two weeks.
Prepare your home. Tonsillectomies are outpatient procedures, meaning you will go home the same day of the surgery to recover. Buy the proper fluids and foods to have at home when you return from the procedure.
Make sure you have plenty of water and other fluids such as Gatorade, Pedialyte or apple juice on hand for the first 24 hours of recovery. Do not drink carbonated, citric or dairy fluids during this period.
After 24 hours, reintroduce soft foods. Stock your home with simple foods like Jello, mashed potatoes, clear-broth soups and even baby food, which can offer you a variety of flavours. Stay away from any hard to swallow foods, citric foods, spicy foods or dairy products.
Set up some help. You will need someone to drive you to and from the surgery. You may also need someone for at least the first few days of recovery to help you out, as you may be in a lot of pain and on painkillers, which can limit your mobility.
Tips and warnings
- Talk to your doctor about what to expect following surgery, as he may have extra precautions for you to take.
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