After Tonsillectomy/Adenoidectomy

Your child will need time to recover. Limit activity for 1–2 weeks after tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy. Ask the doctor for exact guidelines. Also, expect your child to have some ear pain 1–2 weeks after tonsillectomy. Below are other guidelines for recovery.



Listed below are drink and food suggestions to help make sure your child gets enough fluids and nutrients:

  • Give your child lots of water, popsicles, and mild, nonacidic juices (avoid citrus).

  • Serve soft foods, such as gelatin, pudding, ice cream, scrambled eggs, pasta, and mashed foods.

  • Avoid hot, spicy, and rough foods such as fresh fruits, toast, crackers, and potato chips.


The following medication may be prescribed for your child:

  • Pain medication to help with swallowing.

  • Antibiotics to avoid infection.

When to Call the Doctor

Mild pain and a slight fever are normal after surgery. But call the doctor if your child has any of the following:

  • Fever over 101.0°F

  • Severe pain that prescribed medication does not relieve

  • Bright red bleeding

  • Difficulty breathing


Use only medications approved by your child’s doctor. Always avoid medicines that contain ibuprofen or aspirin. They may cause bleeding. Medicines with acetaminophen are a better choice.