28 answers

Good Foods After Tonsil and Adenoid Removal

Let's try a more tame topic, since my last request never got any responses!!!

My daughter goes into surgery to have her adenoids and tonsils removed and her nasal turbinates surgically shrunk tomorrow morning (2/26/09). I understand this is a very routine procedure, but each child responds differently.

My question is, for those of you moms who have gone through this with your little ones, what kinds of foods (other than popsicles and ice cream!) did your kids do well with post-surgery. I've been told she can't have citrus or carbonated beverages for 2 weeks and no red dye for two days after the procedure. Any other helpful hints???

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Jello, mashed potatoes, and any other really soft foods like that. She also may not like anything warm as it may irritate her. Also do not feed ice cream, give her sherbet, the milk in ice cream produces flem that will irritate her throat. I wish her a speedy recovery!

Hi J.,

My son had this done in November, and the day he came home he ate teriyaki (sp?)chicken from Pei Wei, I think whatever they will eat is great. Hope all goes well.

My daughter had this done this past October, she was 4. She ate popsicles, lots of them, orange sherbert and drank 7-Up/Sprite. I know you were looking for other foods, but this is all she ate, if she ate at all. She at a lot the first day when we got home, then her eating really tapered down and she didn't eat much over the next few days.

Good luck! She'll do great....let her eat whatever she wants...as long as she's eating :)

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My daughter had this done this past October, she was 4. She ate popsicles, lots of them, orange sherbert and drank 7-Up/Sprite. I know you were looking for other foods, but this is all she ate, if she ate at all. She at a lot the first day when we got home, then her eating really tapered down and she didn't eat much over the next few days.

Good luck! She'll do great....let her eat whatever she wants...as long as she's eating :)

Jello, mashed potatoes, and any other really soft foods like that. She also may not like anything warm as it may irritate her. Also do not feed ice cream, give her sherbet, the milk in ice cream produces flem that will irritate her throat. I wish her a speedy recovery!

My dauhgter will be doing tonsil surgery soon so I am excited to see your responses on this.
I would suggest mybe getting those gogarts in a sleeve and frreze them so there like popsicles. Apple sauce, Bannana smushed, Chicken both or soup. Fruit smoothies from real fruit get some strawberries, blueberrie, raseberries, and strawberry yogurt and blend it. Put some ice before blending so its really cold ad some water or grape juice to it. Theres all kinds of stuff put you maginacian in with nutrician. You can make flavored Ice so she doesn't get all the sweet make them yourself in cups and use real fruit. Good luck please keep me posted because I will be in the same boat in march or after. Thanks

I have had this procedure twice. I was little myself back then. So this is what I remember: After surgery you feel like you have a really bad sore throat. It hurts to talk, it hurts to swallow. I remember eating soups (not too hot). But the wound heals up pretty fast.
Also, I am sure doctors will give you a list of "what to do and not to do".

I had mine out when I was 18...rough experience. Worse than childbirth...but it isn't as bad for the little people. you have gotten some great ideas already, I also remember eating baby food fruits. Good luck!

Your best bet is to talk to the doctor. My oldest daughter was 4 when they took out her tonsils and adnoids and put tubes in her ears. I had enough ice cream, popsicles and Jello in the fridge I could have supplied 20 to 30 kids! Alot of it ended up being thrown out. Her doctor told me that if she wanted something, let her try to eat it. The main thing is Liquids. She ate Kentucky fried chicken for dinner that night. My youngest daughter was only 3 months old when they put tubes in her ears. I gave her stage 1 babyfoods and formula plus clear juices. The main thing is you don't want them crying, screaming, yelling and getting dehydrated.

Talk to the doctor, they can give you better information and more ideas.

Good luck!

My son just had his removed on 2/24/09 and the same day he ate rice. He chewed it up really well. The next day he ate mac and cheese and a donut and mashed potatoes. We tried chicken noodle soup didnt work. It burned his throat. Becareful of the pain medicene backing up the bowels we just spent 3hrs at the ER. He had to have an enema and drink some really gross stuff.. Good luck and you will be in my prayers.

My three year old just had this done in October. All kids are so different, my son had his done when he was two and wouldnt eat or drink a thing. But my daughter was more of a trooper. We did scrambled eggs, pudding, yogurt. The most important thing is keeping her hydrated. So pick out some of her favorite things to drink. Peach, white grape juice is not citrusy, chocolate milk, those sorts of things. What I did for my daughter and not my son (ive learned a lot), is I went to the dollar store and picked her out some cheap gifts. I wrapped them, and when she would refuse her medicine, or get more upset, we would haul out a wrapped gift and yes we would bribe her. It kept our long boring weekend exciting too. Watching the Dora and Barbie movies I had rented for her over and over was getting to be a little old.
Good Luck. Your daughter will be like a new person after she is well.

I had my tonsils removed and turbinates shrunk at age 25 and I ate a lot of scrambled eggs with cheese. It just slid down.

One thing the doctor didn't warn me about...the turbinate think can initially cause swelling there, which was torture when combined with recovery from the tonsils being removed. I initially had even more trouble breathing through my nose than usual (because of the turbinate swelling) and breathing through my mouth made my throat really dry and felt worse. I needed to sip water constantly, but swallowing was like torture at first.

I don't mean to be a downer...just thought you should know so you can ask your doctor about it. I know the turbinate thing could have been done at a different time, but I figured, get it done all at once....

Oops, I just realized that she had the surgery today, not tomorrow, so it's too late to ask about doing the turbinates at a separate time. Hopefully it's not as bad for her...they say younger kids bounce back quicker anyway.

Good luck with the surgery. My son had his removed last summer and he did well.
Yes, stay away from foods and drinks with red dyes. Also, do not let her pain meds wear off. I let me son sleep 1 hour pass the time he was due for another dose, he was in a lot of pain and extremly very unhappy. So wake her up if it's time. We had a lot of soups and jello. My son did eat some soft bakes chicken 4 days later because he was 9 years old and couldn't deal with the liquid diet too long : )but be careful. Maybe you could cut up chicken breast really small and mix it with cream of chicken soup. Of course after the first couple of days. Yogurt is also a good choice.

She's going to sleep a lot the 1st couple days and that's normal.
Again good luck

Avoid too much dairy those first couple of days as it contributes to mucus production. Chicken noodle soup is a favorite for most kids. The cold from the popsicles really does soothe.

Hi J.,

My son had this done in November, and the day he came home he ate teriyaki (sp?)chicken from Pei Wei, I think whatever they will eat is great. Hope all goes well.

Hi J.---It's been a long time since my daughter had her adnoids removed but my son just had wisdom teeth removed and I think this might apply.

We us a great soy based protein powder for smoothies so we had alot of those. You can mix just about anything in a smoothie. To add extra nutrition, besides the obvious frozen fruit and yogurt, I added a couple of tablespoons of hot cereal (after it cooled) to the smoothies. You could also add frozen or fresh spinach leaves, ground flax or flax oil (ground is best for fiber and anti-cancer properties).

As for the red dye, you don't want your daughter to have that ANY day. Those dyes and other food additives are implicated in a number of health related issues.

I have a friend in Kzoo who can get you a can of Complete (smoothie protein powder) today. And please feel free to contact me for more information on healthy foods, food dyes, etc. I am studying wellness education through a Naturopath who has her PhD in nutrition. I have lots of files, recipes, articles that I can share with you.

Good luck! D. ###-###-#### ____@____.com

My daugher wouldn't eat anything! We did buy jello cups which she did eat after a couple of days. I think she did eat some watermelon cut up in very small pieces. My advice would be to stay on the pain meds even when you think your daughter is feeling better. That was are biggest mistake, we tried to switch to regualar tylenol too fast.

Good luck!

Our doc said no scratchy foods such as chips, popcorn, etc...but anything else was fine. Pretty much whatever our son felt like eating would be okay...with our common sense as a guide.

I think it will go better than you expect...ours did!

Good luck and prayers!


Hi J. -

You might want to stay away from any dairy products for at least the first day or two. Dairy creates mucus and trying to cough it up can cause bleeding. Trust me, you don't want that. I had my tonsils out when I was 17 and two of my boys had theirs out at 18 months old. We did some jello, popsicles, frozen juice pops, soup, apple juice, water and "flat" pop. I would let the pop sit open in the fridge until the carbonation was gone or add a little water to make it go flat. The cola syrup calmed the upset stomach feeling and the lemon-lime sodas were a preferred taste. Within a day or two the boys (and I) were back to eating more solid foods as long as they were soft and easily swallowed. Within 5 days she should be back to a regular menu. Don't force her to eat, she will eat when she is ready but keep the fluids going and keep encouraging the food. Remember, too, that having this surgery may very well change her taste for food. What she once liked so much might not taste very good to her anymore.

I wish you the best - S.

HI J.,
My daughter had her adnoids removed and tubes in her ears at about 4 years old. she had no problems at all and was fine a couple hours after surgery. I don't have any experience with tonsils but I am sure your Dr or nurse will be very helpfull. When kids are youg and having these things done, they bounce back very quickly so I wouldn't worry too much. I think it is harder on us as their moms than it is on them. It was probably the longest half hour of my life waiting for my daughter to get out of the operating room. Good luck with everything and remember you will have a healthier child when it is done.

My son just had this surgery yesterday! He is my yougest of 4 (all had their tonsils out :) My oldest is 25 now and she couldn't have ice cream (dr said no) From what I remember she had: jello, any kind she wanted of popsicles, eggs (protein) Then my son (now 16) was allowed ice cream and he ate all kinds with out chuncks, eggs, chicken noodle soup (cut up and cooled) frozen gogurt and tons of water. My middle son (now 13) was not allowed ice cream so he ate tons of popsicles(no red/purple), chiken and stars soup (cooled), jello, mashed potatoes and gravy, eggs and tons of water. My 7 year old son that had his tonsils out yesterday is eating eggs, popcicles (they now have them with a numbing agent), drinking tons of water (every 30 min he takes a drink ..use your cell phone to set the alarm and take a drink yourself...they love it) he is drinking apple and white grape juice, soups, mash potatoes and gravy, buttered egg noodles,jello pudding and he can have ice cream! This kid ate the min. he got home and has been eating all day and night! We have used to perscription pain meds (didn't on any of the kids, I have allergies to them and so do they) so we use the no dye tylenol and ibprophen alternating every three hours (we are lucky there is both my husband and I and his sister to share the cycle so we all get sleep :) We aren't giving him any red/purple foods, no pop and just really pushing the H2O because keeping the throat hydrated is so important. He is home for two weeks if he needs to be. For sure until his scabs fall out (the kids hate that). Also to be sure he doesn't eat anything hard that can scratch the throat and to be sure he isn't yelling and he is drinking. We gave him a bell and a notebook but for kids that cannot write: give them two options and hold up 1 finger for the first and two for the second. I have him take a drink before and after he talks when he needs to say something "important". Every kid is different! I really believe taking a couple weeks to make sure your child heals right will make all the difference in the years to come!!

I'm sorry your last question never got any responses. My daughters both have their tonsils, however I did have mine taken out. I was able to have anything smooth - yogurt, easy soups (chicken noodle would probably even be okay), mashed potatoes, pudding. Basically anything that isn't going to catch on any stitches still in the throat and pull them out or hurt a sore throat, think soothing those first couple days. If it doesn't hurt for her to eat a piece of meat that is cut up in little, little pieces (like toddler size), then it should be okay, she just needs to chew well. When in doubt, ask the doctors office for some suggestions/guidelines. Good luck!!

We purchased one of those ice shavers/sno-cone machines when my daughter had her tonsils out. Not only did it help then, but they are still good anytime! :-D

Didn't read through all your responses, but can tell that mine will be very simliar to Kims. My daughter had this surgery, albeit years ago, but remember it well!

The frozen yogurt tubes is an excellent idea. The throat is raw and cold foods are soothing. Applesauce, jello, soft canned fruits, smoothies...these are all wonderful options. I would however, caution against soup. While the heat of it is soothing at first, my daughter suffered greatly because of the salt content (set her back a good 2 days!). Even broths are quite salty and salt burns! Perhaps trying ones with no salt (if there is such a thing) could be an option.

The good news, the first 2 days are the worst...after that it moves along pretty quickly. Good luck!

Most likely after the surgery, they will give you a list. From what I remember, soft foods for 2-3 weeks after, such as macaroni and cheese, applesauce, green beans, etc. You don't want to give her anything that could scratch her throat, such as chips or nachos. Make sure to not give her anything that's easier to choke on, such as hot dogs. Also, NO GUM. The kids are used to having those tonsils there and it takes a little while to get used to not having them there. My son almost choked to death on gum when he chewed it too soon after the surgery. Wait at least two weeks on that til you see how she's doing. Good luck!

Hi J., my daughter had her jaw broken, & cheek fractered, car accident. After, Dr said nothing harder than mashed pot. for 1 mo. pudding pie, noodles, tuna, beans & cheese taco bell, soft scrambled eggs. rice, pasta & can or sm cut up chicken & mushroom soup, Malt-o-meal cereal. Hope your daughter recoveres quickly, best of luck to you. B.


Good alternitives you got, one thing I will say though is my daughter had hers removed at the age og 3½ and was hungry RIGHT AFTER and Ice cream was the only choice. She is now 10½ and remembers it as a positive experience just because of the special treat of an ice cream " out of the normal rules for one "

Good Luck,

J. mom to Vanessa 10 and Mark 16

Hi J.,
My son had his tonsils and adenoids out this past November.
I wish you the best tomorrow, it is always scary and nerve wrenching when our children have to go under anethesia.
Everyone else gave great food ideas already, we did the same. Smoothies, applesauce, jello, soups(not to hot) watery oatmeal. Chewing gum and sucking on hard candy help keep the throat moist. When it gets dry it is painful.
Be prepared Day 1, 2, & 3 will go well but day 4 was horrible for us. The healing process and swelling made it hard for my son to swallow and then he would panic. Don't
stop the pain meds. to soon, they really do need them.
Good Luck.
p.s. I know some people said no gum later on in the thread but our Dr. told us to do this and it helped very much.
I suppose it depends on the age of the child. And also of course they are not going to get a big huge piece of gum just and half of stick or so to help produce syliva to help ease the dry sore throat.

Hello both of my daughters had their tonsils and adenoids removed last April. Both of them really didn't eat much the first couple days. They ate applesauce, go-gurts, mac-n-cheese, sherbert, puddings, scrambled eggs, mashed potatoes. After about 4 or 5 days they were really eating what they wanted. I still didn't let them eat chips or anything hard like them. N.

I was also told no diary (including ice cream) for 24 hours. I remember eating mashed potatos...

Does she like mashed potatoes? Those with some gravy would be filling. Also yogurt, pudding and jello. If you have a food processor or blender you could puree vegetables and fruits as long as there are no seeds or strings in them or strain them through some cheese cloth to remove those things. You can dress up squash with a little brown sugar and butter bake it and mash it. Ensure is also a good way to get nutrients when you can't eat solid foods and it's pretty tasty.



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