These days the doctor’s advice is to give a lot of pain medication, so the patient doesn’t feel the wound in his throat. They feel it’s more important that the patient eats and drinks normally as soon as possible again. At first I was a bit shocked by the heavy regime but I can subscribe to it fully now. We did exactly as they said and for a week our son did not feel anything which indeed made it really easy for him to eat and drink again. I had bought a big selection of ice creams and he felt very spoiled to eat those. We gave him soft and liquid foods the first days, but he soon wanted other food as well, especially when he saw us eating it. He did not feel any pain or discomfort those days, which was great. We had a happy child at home, although the first days he did sleep several hours during the day, but the other hours he enjoyed playing.
The idea is that you slowly wean the patient of the painkillers, starting with the heaviest one. Taking the first one of was easy; he slept well and never woke up at night. It got a more difficult with the two lighter ones, because he was fed up with taking them and did not want them anymore. On top of that it was difficult to judge when he would need it again and a few times he suddenly felt pain in his throat, usually after eating or drinking something, so we were too late. We then of course gave him the meds, but this was with great difficulty as he did not want them anymore.
All in all, 8 days later he really did not need them anymore and he could go to school again. The only thing that is different is that his voice is a bit higher, but that is normal and will slowly disappear too. I am so relieved that it is done. And I have renewed respect for my own parents who had to go through this day many times. It’s debilitating.
Looking back I can summarize a few tips for those of you who face a similar operation in the future:
- Do not tell your child too much in advance
- Make sure you get the operation done at a hospital were one parent can stay with the child until he is under general anaesthesia (so ask your ENT-doctor specifically about this)
- Bring a little wrapped present for your child for when he wakes up (a book is ideal)
- Follow the pain medication regime, it really works
- Stock up on different ice creams