Tonsillectomy Scabs- How and when do they fall off?
Regardless of the tonsillectomy method used, some sort of scab is going to form over the the area from which your tonsils have been cut, coblated, and/or cauterized.
It’s normal. It is normal. People often become obsessed with the appearance of the tonsil beds as they recover from tonsillectomy. Almost like a recently lost tooth, it can be hard to resist the temptation to explore the new landscape. This too is normal. I strongly advise against molesting the area with foreign objects. Those scabs will fall off on their own. Touching, poking, or scraping on them increases the risk of hemorrhage and you don’t want that.
Many Otoraryngologists, or ear, nose and throat, (ENT) specialists recommend eating a somewhat rough diet, (think dry toast), to keep the affected area clear of excessive tonsillectomy scab build-up. This advice is most often given in the United Kingdom and Australia. Most ENT’s in the United States advise a soft diet.
Which ever route you take, there will likely be formation of tissue that covers the tonsil beds. I recommend following the advice I give in other pages of this site; keep the throat moist, avoid sharp foods, stay hydrated, take pain medications on schedule, sleep upright if possible, and leave those tonsillectomy scabs alone. They will normally begin to slough of at about day seven or eight of your recovery.
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What Happens When Tonsillectomy Scabs Fall Off
You may feel a sharp pain occasionally as the tonsillectomy scabs fall off. This is common. This is normal. There is a slight increase in risk of bleeding while tonsillectomy scabs fall off. If you do have some bleeding, try gargling with ice cold water. This will usually stop the bleeding. If this doesn’t work, and bleeding becomes profuse, call 911 or get to a hospital immediately. Don’t panic. In there relatively rare cases, health care professionals have great success at stopping the bleed.
One of our readers has shared photos of how her throat looked after tonsillectomy in a daily recovery photo journal. Take a look: