Read part one of my tonsillectomy journey that was published on Wednesday *HERE*. That post talked about events leading up to the surgery and what happened on the day of the surgery. This post is a diary documenting pain and the recovery process. They say it takes adults approximately 2 weeks to recover from a tonsillectomy and for the most part I agree. For the first week I didn’t have much of an appetite but a week after the surgery I hit a turning point and things started to improve.
Wednesday October 7
The pain isn’t unbearable but my mouth feels dry so I make sure to drink regularly. I managed to eat toast and fruit salad for breakfast and I was given my discharge papers around 9am. Mum picked me up an hour later and on the way home we stopped at a pharmacy to fill my prescription. I had icecream when I got home but it wasn’t very enjoyable. I was still tired from the anesthetic and had a sleep in the early afternoon.
Thursday October 8
The pain is definitely more noticeable and I feel like I can’t talk very well and have a swollen tongue. There feels like extra saliva in my mouth which causes me to dribble in my sleep. I spent most of the day relaxing in bed. I caught up on a bunch of YouTube videos and listened to some podcasts. I also had slight bruises forming on each of my cheeks near the back. For dinner I had an omelette and mashed potato.
Friday October 9
This was probably my least favourite recovery day. I’d say pain was at the highest on this day and I had two tramadol capsules along with paracetamol and ibuprofen throughout the day. This was the first time I had taken tramadol but didn’t notice any side effects which is good. I brushed my teeth for the first time since Tuesday, I wanted to to give it a couple of days so I wouldn’t hurt my mouth or disturb the wound. I really didn’t eat much or feel hungry today but by the afternoon I felt sick and lightheaded and knew I had to eat something. I spent most of the day asleep. I managed an iceblock in the evening but even licking wasn’t easy with a swollen tongue.
Saturday October 10
I woke up quite early and went on my phone for a while. I was a little frustrated that I couldn’t eat much at this point and earache like pain started which made me a bit grumpy. Mum and I watched a movie in the afternoon then I went back to bed and had a nap. I felt well enough to have my first shower since the surgery in the evening and also started a new book.
Sunday October 11
This is the first day I didn’t need a nap since surgery. My tongue was still swollen and I had pain in my right ear when I ate/chewed. I was back on tramadol and took one capsule when I woke up. Mum and I popped out to vote and pick up our groceries. In the afternoon I watched The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and really enjoyed it. Perhaps I’ll check out the other films in the series too.
Monday October 12
I reached for another tramadol again today but it is the last one I needed to take during recovery. I woke up with a bit of pain but the regular taking of painkillers keeps on top of everything. I think I sneezed for the first time since the operation which was extremely uncomfortable. In the evening I painted my nails for the first time in months using Silky Negligee from Revlon.
Tuesday October 13
This was the pivotal day in which everything started to turn. Still taking painkillers at regular intervals and managing pain ok but my tongue didn’t feel as swollen. I placed a couple of online orders, one with MECCA (MECCA is like the NZ/Oz Sephora) and one with Colourpop. I had my first proper dinner in a week and managed butter chicken (cut the pieces up small), rice and naan bread and it was delicious!
Wednesday October 14
Yesterday was definitely the turning point. I was able to eat larger portions of food, had minimal mouth and ear pain but still a little sensitivity if having something cold. I posted photos of makeup items I’m keen to pass on to Instagram and watched the 2018 film Whitney about Whitney Houston. I love watching music documentary films.
Thursday October 15
This is the first day I noticed there wasn’t any pain with eating and the tooth and ear sensitivity had calmed down. The dribbling in my sleep seems to have calmed down too. It was really cold and wet weather wise. I finished my second book of recovery, I haven’t read as much as I would have liked but for the first week I was very tired.
Friday October 16
A relatively pain free day. Had to run a couple of errands; popped to the supermarket and picked up the bits I ordered from Mecca on Tuesday. I did give authority to leave the box in the mailbox but the courier didn’t see that instruction which was a little frustrating. Also treated myself to a couple of jewellery pieces from In the Frow’s Edge of Ember collection. I like simple jewellery pieces and I tend to prefer silver so I chose a dainty little ring with a white topaz stone and a birthstone necklace. The garnet pendant looks elegant on the gold chain.
Saturday October 17
Woke up at 6am and couldn’t get back to sleep. Pretty much pain free from this point on. Did a full face of makeup for the first time in almost two weeks. Listened to music for the first time properly in ages and even managed to sing a little.
Sunday October 18
I didn’t have a very peaceful sleep. Had quite a productive day getting a few jobs done around home like laundry and washing my makeup brushes. Picked up the grocery order in the afternoon and had fish and chips for tea. My appetite had well and truly returned by this point.
Monday October 19
I returned to work. My biggest worry was what to take for lunches as I’m still trying to eat food that’s easy to swallow and nothing too hard or crunchy. I coped fine and it was nice to see everyone again! One of my colleagues left a packet of my favourite chocolates on my desk which was so sweet and thoughtful. I spent most of the day catching up on emails.
Tuesday October 20
Two weeks since surgery! I had an annoying headache most of the day, possibly due to not sleeping well the previous few nights. Nothing much else to report.
I hope you enjoyed reading these posts and getting an insight into what recovery has been like. In all honesty the pain wasn’t terrible and I’m thankful it was mostly manageable with paracetamol and ibuprofen. If you still have your tonsils and get regular bouts of tonsillitis it’s worth considering getting them removed. Give yourself a good couple of weeks to rest and take it easy. Regular painkillers are the key. You will be over sugar and sweet food by about day three but push through and be kind to yourself and your body. Everyone has a different rate of recovery and while I noticed a big change after a week it may take someone else 10 days or two weeks to start making progress. At the moment I can’t say whether the removal has made a difference but it will be interesting to see what happens the next time I get a cold.