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please calm me down! son has tonsilectomy in 3 weeks

(35 Posts)
SeasonalVag Tue 27-Sep-16 07:24:10

Ds is having his tonsils out soon. I had mine out, also at 6, and I still get very upset when I think about it. I'm dreading him being in pain, possibly seeing me cry , worried about complications etc. I hated the lack of dignity, control, being unable to talk etc.

Can anybody share experiences? Is it as painful as it was 30 years ago or are they better with painkillers etc?

Is there a child's mouthwash I can train him to use now so he keeps his mouth clean?

Can I just dose him up with oramorph after? I'd rather he more or less slept through the immediate couple of days after.

He's a sensitive child, physically and emotionally, and I'm dreading the fallout. For example, he won't listen to anything related to Frozen as he was watching that while recovering from his worst ever bout of tonsilitis....three Years ago. I'm scared that he feels betrayed. And I know I'm projecting massively too.

I'm planning on taking him shopping for new pjs before the op, know what to do after the op, but am losing sleep over it.

DeathMetalMum Tue 27-Sep-16 07:31:06

No advice really but hand holding. My dd who is 5 is also having hers in 3 weeks time. I'm also out of my mind with worry, possible complications even after care. We have our pre-op next week, I'm pretty certain it's going to make me even more on edge.

FruitCider Tue 27-Sep-16 07:42:40

No experience as a parent but I remember my cousin having her tonsils out 24 years ago, I went to see her the next day. She was up and about talking, laughing and playing. It's a minor procedure for young children I've been told since, most bounce back very quickly. They don't give adults who have had a tonsillectomy oramorph ( I used to work in adult ENT surgical) but not sure what pain relief they give children. The most important thing is to get people eating ASAP so the throat doesn't seize up and stops the scabs from getting too large. Toast is perfect (although it sounds very cruel). Most post op complications come from people refusing to eat. Hope that helps!

SeasonalVag Tue 27-Sep-16 07:42:48

Yes, our preoperative is today, hence the panic. Is she worried about it? I dont really mention it although he's had explanations etc. I hope I haven't worried you! My family thinks I'm blowing it out of all proportion.

SeasonalVag Tue 27-Sep-16 07:43:55

How old was your cousin, fruicider??

FruitCider Tue 27-Sep-16 07:44:46


BlossomCat Tue 27-Sep-16 07:51:30

Do NOT dose your child up with oromorph! You would put them in unreasonable danger.
At your pre-op today, ask them your questions about pain relief. The more you prepare your son, the better he should cope with it. Talk to the play specialist about coping techniques.
Again, please do not use adult medicine on a child, the side effect risks are not worth it

SeasonalVag Tue 27-Sep-16 07:55:44

Blossom, I wasn't going to hand him a bottle of oramorph!! But I know some hospitals send them home with some.

FruitCider Tue 27-Sep-16 07:59:24

I would be very surprised at oramorph. My hospital only gave adults paracetamol and ibuprofen! It's also done as day Case surgery here. And your child needs to be awake to be able to eat to stop the scabs from building up.

kimblesj Tue 27-Sep-16 08:00:21

Both my youngest had tonsillectomy with adenoidectomy and grommet insertion, youngest was just under 2 and the other was 2.5, they were absolutely fine! Day 3/4 was a bit sore and they had calpol but honestly they were worse when they were ill than after surgery. Both are within hours of coming round and both were home the next day.

curryandrice Tue 27-Sep-16 08:00:41

DD had her tonsils out at 2.5 years - I was worried about the anaesthetic but everything was fine. She was back to normal after a couple of days and it transformed her health in the long term.

sm40 Tue 27-Sep-16 08:01:49

Dd had tonsils and adenoids out at 3. Groggy for hour when woke up, went back to sleep and woke up fine. Had 2 weeks off school, wouldn't have known anything was wrong after a few days. Think had few medicines and kept her dosed up on pain relief but she was fine! Good luck x

Penfold007 Tue 27-Sep-16 08:03:25

Do not under any circumstances give your child oramorph. If they need that sort of pain relief the medical staff will administer it and keep a very close eye on him. DD had her tonsils removed recently and it was a much better experience than I remember having when mine were removed. Paracetamol and ibuprofen were prescribed and kept any discomfort under control. The only mouthwash advised was saltwater, we found that a small headed toothbrush was much more comfortable than her usual one. Plenty of fluids also helped. For the first few days I followed the hospital's advice and gave her pain relief at the exact times suggested even at night. Good luck

bookbook Tue 27-Sep-16 08:05:46

My DGS had his tonsils and adenoids out last year ( was 2.5 then). .
The hospital were very good, and advised carefully on painkillers.
DD bought some age appropriate books to read to him before hand so he knew what was likely to happen.
Just make sure you keep to the painkillers as they suggest. And funnily enough, they suggest eating scratchy food like toast and crisps!

DeathMetalMum Tue 27-Sep-16 10:31:05

No I'm already worried! Dd is a little anxious we've tried to explain a little bit about it without worrying her too much as she's generally quite a worrier anyway. Also with it being day surgery I know there's a chance of it being cancelled on the day so we're trying to not to talk about it too much. She has had such a rotten year with tonsillitis I know she's (partly) looking forward to them being removed.

All the advice is brilliant, the consultant has advised two weeks off school afterwards also, so we are going to sort out some work with her teacher, unfortunately the op is the last two weeks of term for us.

bobblewobble Tue 27-Sep-16 10:38:28

My son had his tonsils out last month. He was 7. He was upset when he first came round but they gave him ice lollies and tip tops and after about 2/3 hours, he was completely calm and was even playing football on the ward with blown up gloves.

We went home the following day. He recovered quickly, which was helped by him eating and drinking regularly. We made sure he had his paracetamol and ibuprofen like clockwork. We wrote down the times and gave it even when he wasn't complaining of being in pain for the first week as advised. He was prescribed oramorph to take home but he did not need to use it.

His most pain was around day 6/7 and that pain was in his ear. He used a hot water bottle to lay on and that with his pain relief was enough for him.
I was expecting him to be a lot worse, especially as he had not suffered with his tonsils before but he surprised me and was great.

Hope all the little ones having their ops soon do just as well as my little one did.

ipswichwitch Tue 27-Sep-16 10:52:27

DS1 had tonsils and adenoids out two year ago, age 2.10. Surgery only took an hour, and he was encouraged to drink very soon after. They advised round the clock pain relief, alternating paracetamol and brufen, wether he said it hurt or not, for at least the first week, but they said two weeks if needed.

You need to encourage eating and drinking,and particularly crunchy foods (toast, crisps, crackers). Thus is to stop the build up of gunk in the tonsil area that can become infected. We took him crisp shopping beforehand and he had a whale of a time picking his favourites.

Because we kept up with the paracetamol and brufen regime (you definitely do not want oromorph) he was pretty much pain free. The worst day was day 5 post-op (which they warned us about), when it starts to scab up, and he was uncomfortable and somewhat irritable but certainly not in agony.

He stayed overnight after the op and was allowed home once he's eaten. Try not to make too big a deal of it. Focus on how much better she will feel once it's all over - it transformed DS. We got some new dvd's and had some duvet days watching films and eating popcorn for the first few days after. He loved it, and it was the best thing to do anyway as he was rather tired then anyway.

LetsJunglyJumpToIt Wed 28-Sep-16 22:22:07

Calm down about the oromorph (not you OP)! hmm

I work on a children's ward and we send tonsillectomy patients home with Oromorph. You need to give regular paracetamol and nurofen for at least a week and give the oromorph on top if you need to. When my DS had his tonsils out we found giving the oromorph before bed useful. DS was fine afterwards, ate and drank really well. Normal diet, not toast or ice cream just a normal diet, so whatever he feels like eating as long as he's eating something. The pain can get worse when you get home before it starts to get better again. Don't make a big thing about it, prepare your DS as much as you can and take lots of distraction for when you're in hospital. Books, iPad, comforter and toys. You don't need to worry about mouthwash. A lot has changed in 30 years, including tonsil removal techniques and how we look after them. Lots of tonsils are done as day cases now and if not its just an overnight stay. Stock up on pain relief.

Wackadoodle84 Thu 29-Sep-16 07:51:40

My little one had her tonsils out 2 years ago, the best advise I can offer is to keep on top of the pain relief, keep track of what he can have and when and keep it regularly topped up. With my my little one it was paracetamol and nurofen only. The second big thing was getting her to eat as soon as she was safe to do so, the nurses brought her in soft food to start with but progrested her on to normal food pretty quickly, we felt bad pushing her to eat but in fairness it speeds up the recovery process so much, lastly after a week she was a heck of a lot better but around day 10 the scabs can tend to come off so watch out for an increase in pain around then, again we just treated with over the counter meds. Best of luck to your little boy

DeathMetalMum Thu 06-Oct-16 10:48:29

Hi Vag how are you doing? Dd had her pre-op this week. She seems extremely excited about the whole thing, and was almost in tears when dp and I said she might be able to come home the same day, apparently the nurse said she needs pyjamas so she's staying the night!

On the whole though the pre-op was brilliant Dd spoke with a play therapist about the different ways of sending her to sleep and they explained everything that would happen on the day to her. We spoke to the nurse about timing etc. I'm worried now, the weeks seem to be going quickly and on Monday it will be only a week away.

ThirdTimeLuck Mon 10-Oct-16 23:20:09

My DS has his tonsils out at the beginning of the year when he was 3, although I was dreading it it's been the best thing we could have done. I was so worried about the recovery, and yes it was painful for him, but no worse than a bout of tonsillitis. I had mine out as an adult and it was agony but it didn't seem to be like that for DS. We kept up with the painkillers for him so that he wasn't uncomfortable and this also helped him with eating and drinking, the hospital sent us home with calpol, ibuprofen and oramorph. By day 3 he definitely needed the oramorph as this is the most painful stage, it's when the scabs form and need to be pulled off by eating and drinking. Within 2 weeks he was back to his usual self and has never been ill since, it's improved his life in so many ways.

He went in as a day case but wasn't operated on until 4pm, we were home by 1pm the next day, they gave us a 3 day window to return to the ward if we needed to and a further week of phone calls for advice. I was so worried about complications but felt we were well prepared because we'd done loads of research.

The worst part was the anaesthetic, of course, and the pain on the 3rd and 4th day. But overall it wasn't half the trauma we thought it would be, DS is fearful of all medics now but he's slowly coming round to the idea that they help people.

Good luck to all with impending operations, soon it will feel like it's in the distant past.

SeasonalVag Wed 26-Oct-16 05:15:36

Hello, I just wanted to update this for anyone who's worried about a tonsillectomy. My son had his yesterday. He was ok, woke up and are an astonishing amount of food, which we tried to pace but the poor kid was starving. He's now at home and doing ok.

For the week before the op, I bought 1g vitamin c effervescent tablets and gave him that in a pint of water every evening. I'm convinced this has helped, he's in no way as much pain as I feared.

He's on paracetamol and ibruprofen, you need plenty of that in, plus the usual lollies etc. Anything crunchy that they love is beneficial...My son's a sucker for monster munch, crunchy nut cornflakes and tiger rolls. If you can make them eat plenty crunchy stuff, it prevents scabs ever forming.

Avoid dairy. Mucus production and all that stuff.

If you're worried because you had one as a child, it's probably not as bad....they didn't use laser in the eighties.

I'm so relieved, I was worried about this for a year but to be honest, had I had his attitude, I wouldn't have had such a terrible time. I refused to eat or drink and ended up in a mess.

We were allowed him home as we had two driving adults in the house and loved close to the hospital.

Also the hospital advised me to feed him twenty mins after painkillers and to folllow each dose of painkillers with a good glug of water. good luck to anybody goog through this!

SeasonalVag Wed 26-Oct-16 05:17:44 are you doing? Your tonsillectomy was just before ours, wasn't it?

SeasonalVag Wed 26-Oct-16 05:21:32

Oh, finally, I've trained him to gargle so that he doesn't have to brush his teeth if it gets really bad. Also am juicing a ton of apples for him. Prob the most important thing is to set phone alarm so that he can take painkillers on time through the night, you need to do this for the first week apparently....

LargeHadron Wed 26-Oct-16 06:06:33

Hi SeasonalVag, I've just joined this thread as my DD is due to have her tonsils and adenoids out next week. The hospital phoned me yesterday as there was a cancellation and wondered whether we wanted to come in today! Said no as we're not prepared yet....

Can anyone help with advice about anxiety? DS is in the process of being diagnosed with aspergers and she gets so anxious about things it makes her ill. She knows she's got to have the op at some time in the future, but we haven't told her that it's next week yet. Anyone know some good coping strategies?

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