How Much Time Off for Tonsillectomy?

days off for tonsillectomy

One of the most common questions people ask on the forum is, “how much off from work to recover from my adult tonsillectomy?” Of course it varies between individuals.  I put the question out to our Face Book page.  Here’s what people had to say.  Feel free to add your own comments at the bottom of the page.  Take care and best health to you.

Question: Imagine your tonsillectomy was next week. How many days would you ask off from work?


  • Michelle-  14. It gets you through the worst of it and allows you to start eating somewhat solid foods. You’re off pain mess at that point too.
  • Aireka -Surgery was the 7 returned to work on the 28. At least 15! Had to back in to the hospital twice for ruptured blood vessels. Wouldnt do it again, but glad I did. I got strep every month before surgery. Since surgery have not had to be on antibiotics at all!
  • Kristin – 2 wks
  • Daneka – about 10-12
  • Kathy – Minimum of two full weeks but three if at all possible.
  • Triscia – Depends what you do. I waitressed and bartended and took 3 weeks! At 2 I coulda prob gone back to a desk job…but not a job where I was on my feet and had to TALK as a major part of my job!!!
  • Stacey – 14. I thought I’d be fine in a week, but right as you get better, you get worse.
  • Shiva – bad three weeks
  • Marcy – 3 weeks
  • Christy – 2.5 weeks for me
  • Tina – 21 days!
  • Nicole – 3 weeks
  • Annmarie – I went back after 4 days
  • Lisa – Ignorantly, 1 week
  • Lisa A- Knowing better, 3 weeks.
  • Annmarie- I was fine
  • Kitty – 2 weeks was perfect
  • Meghan – Two weeks was doable for a desk job
  • Chente – 3 weeks.
  • Mari -e 2 weeks
  • Sarah – 4 weeks – I needed to extend my 2 weeks to 4 because it took that long to get my voice back and I spend a lot of time on the phone for work!
  • Annmarie -I must definitely be a mutant lol
  • Sylvia – 1-2 weeks. One week for sure, but about half way through the second week I was feeling much better.
  • Alaina -At LEAST two weeks. Three to be on the safe side. I also had to be re-admitted on day 7 for a bad bleed, so I extended my leave to 3 weeks.
  • Alaina -, you are LUCKY!
  • Annmarie – i think so lol
  • Rebecca – Ten. It took me two full weeks to recover to the point the scabs fell off and I could tolerate being at work. And at that point, I worked in a car. My office was my car and I had very little interaction with people.
  • Emily – 3 weeks at least. Worst recovery ever
  • Tommie – At least 2 weeks
  • Melissa – 2 weeks
  • Melanie – depends on how much talking the job requires, little to no talking 2 weeks, a lot (like customer service) 4 weeks
  • Patrick- 17 days
  • Lisa – 3 weeks
  • Dominic – 14 days. Minimum. Tried to make it on only 10 days was a horrible, miserable (painful!) mistake.
  • Kierstin 21 days ! Atleast ! I still lose my voice after about 6 hours at work and my surgery was two months ago
  • Sherrie 14 days for sure!
  • RosieIt depends on the job. I was able to go back to school (functioning normally) and play an instrument after around 10 days.
  • Rachel -no less than 14
  • Jill -At least two weeks. And if your doctor doesn’t tell you that, he should have to pay your salary for the amount of time you were not able to take off. Seriously, a friend of mine was told she would only need four or five days off.
  • Kara 2 weeks at least!
  • Brigette 2-3 weeks!
  • Diana  I asked for a week but had to take an extra week as my oldest son came home with the flu and shared it with me
  • Diana  2weeks
  • Jules- I’m a teacher. I had 2 weeks left of summer break to recover. It was rough going back & having to talk constantly! Lots of water got me through!!!
  • Juan – At least two weeks. And after that a slow start, remember some meds won’ t let you use heavy machines aka cars.
  • Tonsillectomy Resources Thank you all! I should copy and paste these pearls of wisdom right into the a blog post so others can benefit. I might…

How much time off for tonsillectomy?  What are your thoughts? Read more about what to expect in terms of recovery time for adult tonsillectomy—>

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  1. 2 1/2 weeks. If you’re getting your adnoids out as well you’re going to have a weird irritation feeling up into your ears because the scabs will be pulling off. When you start to feel that pain i realized chugging water helped them come off and it made the pain stop. It’s so gross but, getting your tonsils out is a great decision afterall.

  2. Take 2 weeks. You will need most of it unless you have a remarkably fast healing. Your body needs the time to rest/heal. If you go back too soon, you may find yourself wiped out. That being said, try to get up and be somewhat active every day of those 2 weeks. The more you can maintain some normal activities, I think the quicker you’ll heal.

  3. I had 2 weeks off but needed 3 I had a bleed that landed me back in theatre so I basically started my recovery time again

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