I’m a 35 year old female on day 12 of my recovery. I’m going to follow the trend of the previous poster a be a bit of a light too. It wasn’t that bad. I came to this site, read the awful stories and put this surgery off for six months longer than I should have because I was so terrified. Here’s what I have to say.
1. Find yourself a GOOD surgeon. Don’t let any ol’ Joe take your tonsils out. I think some people have had the horrible pain they did because they didn’t have skilled surgeon. Find yourself someone who is good at their job, will let you talk to previous patients, who is like by their staff and who has been around the block with this surgery and seen the trends come and go. Don’t fall for the latest “trend” in tonsillectomy. Go with the tried and true and a surgeon who can do it blindfolded. For the love.
2. Drink your water. MANY cases of post-surgical bleeding are from not drinking enough. You need to drink to be comfortable but you also need to drink to keep yourself out of the ER. If you don’t want to bleed, drink. The more you drink, the longer your scabs stay on and the longer your scabs stay on, the more your risk of bleeding goes down. Drink.
3. Pain: Take your pain pills. Recognize that you had surgery. On your throat. Surgery hurts, you guys. I come here and read some of these accounts and I feel like people thought they were just going in for a “little procedure” then were surprised that it hurt for more than a day or two. This feel like surgery. If you’ve ever had surgery before, THIS FEELS LIKE SURGERY. On your throat.
4. Find someone to take care of you.
6. Food: Don’t be dumb and try to eat a taco on day 2. The first reason for post-surgical bleeding is dehydration. The second reason is that people eat solid food and it scratches the scabs off before they’re ready to come off. Don’t do that. Eat your jello and your pudding and your broth and don’t eat crap you’re not supposed to until at least day 10.
7. This is the last thing I’ll say but this is an important one. The pain. Y’all. I read so many stories and had so many people, including the first ENT I saw (whom I fired), who told me I couldn’t conceive of this level of pain. First, this leads me back to point 1, 2 and 3. Do those and you’ll save yourself a lot of trouble. Second, this does hurt and it hurts for a while. Days 4-8 started to frustrate me because I felt like I would never turn the corner, but I did on day 9. My pain was a consistent 4 with brief periods (usually at night or before the next painkiller dose) ranging from 6-8. This was always remedied by the next painkiller and more water. NEVER did I feel like I regretted doing it. NEVER did I feel like dying. It was painful for sure but it absolutely, 100%, DOES NOT rank in my top 5 most painful life experiences and I am no hero when it comes to pain. Labor (both of them), c-section and eye surgery were hands down worse. Hands down, no question. I think what gets hard about this is the pain level doesn’t necessarily get better each day. You can expect days 4-8 to be about the same. But most painful experience? Absolutely not. You can do this. You can absolutely do this and you’ll be on the other side before you know. This was not worth even a quarter of the fear and trepidation I gave it. Get it done!