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My son was diagnosed with enlarged adenoids when he was very young. Weird thing was, he never had frequent sore throats, but he had a snoring problem.
When he was 3, the doctors scheduled him for a tonsillectomy, but my husband and I got scared after hearing a story about another girl who died after getting a tonsillectomy.
By the time he had turned 6 and school let out for the summer, I figured it was time to address the problem again. By this time, his snoring had gotten worse and I could never shake the feeling that we should have gotten him the surgery years ago.
Our visit to the ENT doctor confirmed what I had thought, he needed his tonsils out. The doctors scheduled the surgery a month later, and I worried all month long.
We opted to have the surgery done at Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown, WV since it was only 45 minutes from our house and had it’s own children’s unit.
That morning, Cayden had to be at the hospital by 6, so we left the other two kids home with my mom and dad who were coming down later.
I never been so scared, but the staff of Ruby hospital was amazing! They helped reassure all of our fears and made sure Cayden didn’t feel any pain. They even let him take his favorite toy with him – Batman even got his own set of booties and hat
Cayden did amazing through the surgery and today, he doesn’t snore.
If you’re child is getting tonsillectomy soon, here are some easy ways you can prepare yourself and your child:
1. Be honest, don’t stretch the truth. When my husband and I found out Cayden would have his tonsils removed, we were hesitant about telling him right away. But, we decided it would be best to tell him, rather than, wait until last minute. To help him understand, we showed him videos of what would happen and I told him how I got my tonsils removed when I was his age.
2. Pick a good hospital, one that you feel confident in. My family had a few hospitals to choose from, but we’ve always thought higher of Ruby Memorial, so we choose it. . And, when I asked about the IV, they reassured me by telling me Cayden would get medicine before they stuck a needle in him.
3. Stock up on soft foods before the day of surgery. Don’t wait until the day of surgery to go grocery shopping because it won’t be that easy. While my son didn’t eat much that first day, he didn’t want me to leave his side. Stock up on soft foods the day before so you can head straight home after surgery.
4. Fill those prescriptions right away and start the medicine. The hospital sent us home with a pain medicine, but I wasn’t sure we would actually use it. But, thanks to the caring pharmacist, who gave us some good advice, my son avoided a lot of unnecessary pain. Give the medicine right away and be sure to give it as soon as they can have it again, this way your child won’t be in pain. By the next day, work on easing your child’s dosages down.*
5. Enlist some help. While you won’t need help while your child is in surgery, you may need help if you have other kids. Your child will need lots of attention and he/she will be looking for extra special attention.
6. Learn the warning signs of dehydration. Cayden was horrible with drinking after having his surgery. He didn’t want to drink anything. We had such a hard time getting him to drink, that we thought he would become dehydrated. In fact, dehydration is fairly common after Tonsillectomies in children, so be sure to know the warning signs.
7. Be prepared to take a few days off of work. While the actual surgery only takes hours, your child will still be in pain for a few days afterwards. They may spend this time sleeping, but chances are they won’t be feeling good enough to go anywhere, including school.
What are some tips you wish someone told you before your child had surgery?
*always read prescription labels and talk to your doctor before giving any medicine.