15 answers

Adenoid and Tonsil Issues with 3 Year Old!!

Hi Mama's. I have a 3 year old little girl. She is perfect in every way. Our issue is that she wakes up several times a night. Once usually to go potty and the other times are just random, but it's EVERY night and has been for months. Her Dr. told me that her tonsils are huge but that is normal in little ones and not cause for concern. However, I had wondered if the large Tonsils were giving her sleeping/Breathing problems at night. She snores and sleeps with her mouth open (which is related to Adenoids from what I understand). I took her to a Tonsil Specialist and within 5 minutes (after looking in her throat for litterally one second), he said "I'm recommending a FULL Tonsil and Adenoid Ectomy, when would you like to schedule that surgery?" I thought he was crazy. I just don't believe Surgery is necessary. He didn't even ask me if she was having sleep issues, or how her breathing was, etc. She has never had strep and never has sore throats. She just snores and wakes up at night (which might be totally unrelated to the Tonsils). I'm just looking for advice on this and if anyone else has had this problem. I will be getting 2 more opinions on the Tonsil and Adenoid removal. Thanks Mama's for your help.

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So What Happened?™

WOW!!! I cannot thank you all enough for your advice and support. I've got a Well visit with our daughters Dr. on Monday and to discuss this situation and I'm going to get a few more opinions from some of the Dr.'s you guys have referred. I am pretty sure we are going to do the surgery because after these stories, I almost can't wait for it to just be over so we can all sleep better. Thank you so much for your advice and your stories. I'll post later after the surgery (which will probably happen).

More Answers

As hard as is it to think that our precious little ones might need any type of surgery - we need to sometimes look at the big picture. What you are describing is not only harmful to her now - but in the future. As she gets older, this problem could potentially get worse - especially as she goes to school. This surgery is relatively "easy" on a 3-5 year old, and gets worse and worse as we age. Children regound mich quicker when they are younger.

If you weren't pleased with your doctor - find another one. I'd definately recommend a Pediatric ENT - and there have been some mentioned here. We go to Dr. Courtney Noell - who's not only an ENT, but a mom as well, so she understands the real fears that we all have.

I hope that your little one gets better, and that you get her some kind of relief.

J. (mom to a 3 1/2 year old little girl who NEVER sleeps!)

Oh girl! If her tonsils are as big as you say be glad she has not has strep or sore throat because when I was little mine were big and they would almost swell shut which was hard for me to breath. Getting those removed would totally change alot of things for her. There is a doctor in Ft. Worth named J. Mark Palmer that is wonderful!!! His office is by Cook's. He has done surgery on all 3 of my kids! He got my son's hearing back (failed hearing test at school). The other 2 had sinus issues. He is great with kids!!

dr strange at cooks said the said thing about my daughter.. she was waking up many times a night which was apnea, she would stop breathing , startle then wake up.. she would also get sick ALOT and stay sick for much longer than the typical child.. SNORED LOUD!! she had her tonsils and adenoids removed at 18 months of age.. it was a hard week but has been heaven since!!!!!

Hi M.,

My son Kyle (now 8) was a very healthy baby & toddler. When he was 3, he suddenly began snoring HORRIBLY, to the point where I could hear him all the way in my room, and I would lay there scared he wouldn't take another breath since it sounded like he would stop breathing sometimes. When we took him to the ear, nose, & throat dr, we had the same experience as you - all he had to do was glance at Kyle's throat to see that they needed to come out. I was surprised, since he never suffered from infections or anything, but the dr. said sometimes they just swell up for no reason. The surgery went fine, and the dr. told us that Kyle's throat was now opened up 500% more (no, that's not a typo - his tonsils were almost touching, they were so huge). Our only problem after, aside from the normal soreness, was that he essentially had to relearn how to swallow, since everything was coming down at a much faster rate since the tonsils were no longer in the way. He got choked a lot a first, but quickly learned. I'm so happy we did it, and he's been healthy ever since, with no sleep problems, and I sleep better, since I'm not listening for him to take the next breath.


My youngest daughter, now 5, had her adenoids removed and tubes put in her ears. She only had 1 ear infection. She never complained about her ears hurting but she would tell me they weren't working. It turned out that she had a lot of fluid in her ear (not necessarily infected).

I said that to say that her surgery went fine she had it when she was 3. She woke up and recovered fine. She didn't even cry when she woke up.

So if you are comfortable after you get some more opinions just know the surgery itself isn't bad.

Thanks and God bless!

The adenoid and tonsil issues can also cause other problems. The sleeping issues are a big deal - and can get worse down the road. Sleep apnea is a very serious condition that can be caused by enlarged adenoids and tonsils. I would schedule the surgery and get them out. Here is an article that I would recommend reading. I have a friend whose daughter had this exact issue and it got so bad that she was waking up gasping for air and choking. Good luck - just know that it is very serious and could be the reason for her sleep issues.

Dr. Timothy Trone at Medical City is an absolutely fabulous pediatric ENT; he saved my daughter's life. You might consider another consult if you are not comfortable. At any rate, my other daughter had the huge tonsils and adenoids. She had also been having some real behavior issues. She had the snoring and waking issues, also. Dr. Trone explained that her condition was almost as bad as sleep apnea. He also explained about a study that was done on children with enlarged tonsils and adenoids. 800 children were included in the study. The children were all tested for ADD and related problems. The number of children that tested positive for ADD was almost double the normal average. Due to the sleep problems, the kids were just not getting enough sleep. Many of the parents in the study elected to get the tonsils & adenoids removed. A follow up testing was done later and, of the families that had the tonsils removed, the percentage that tested positive for ADD had dropped back to the normal rate. He told me that before I commented on my daughter's behavior problems. It's been about a month since the surgery, she's sleeping much better and her behavior is greatly improved. The younger the child has the tonsils removed, the easier it will be for her. One twin had them removed at 3 by Dr. Trone and I swear she was dancing down the hallway when we left the hospital the next day. The other twin had it at 4, and recovery was longer (but still pretty easy). So, based on how they look, it's probably going to have to happen some time; so do it now when it will not hurt as much. good luck. hope this helps.

I'm not sure what ENT you saw, but I highly recommend Dr. Mehendale ###-###-#### in Frisco. He is at Centennial Medical Pavilion at Coit and 121. He was recommended to me by an overwhelming majority of Moms on here. We went and he was more wonderful than I could have hoped for!!

Getting a 2nd opinion is always a good idea.

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