A tonsillectomy is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of your tonsils, lymph tissue that is located at the back of your throat. A tonsillectomy may be performed if you constantly have tonsillitis, a condition involving inflammation or infection of your tonsils. You may experience throat pain following the procedure that prevents you from chewing and swallowing solid foods. Following a tonsillectomy, your diet may consist of fluids, ice cream and soft, bland foods. Knowing what foods you may eat will aid in healing and help you avoid additional throat pain.
Fluids, Soups and Cooked Cereals
Immediately following a tonsillectomy, your diet should consist primarily of clear liquids. According to the University of Wisconsin, clear fluids such as water, apple juice, Gatorade and popsicles are not only easier on the throat, they also help coat the stomach and decrease nausea. Cold or warm liquids are preferable following the surgery, because they will not irritate your already inflamed throat. Once you can safely tolerate clear fluids, you may advance to heavier liquids such as milk, creamed soups and cooked cereals. Dr. D. Thornley of the Huronia District Hospital in Ontario, Canada states that it is best to avoid citric juices and carbonated sodas, because they may irritate sensitive throat tissue and increase pain. It is important to stay hydrated following a tonsillectomy, because dehydration may exacerbate throat pain and delay healing.
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Ice Cream and Pudding
Ice cream and pudding are recommended foods to eat following a tonsillectomy. Soft, cool foods are easy to swallow and will not irritate or inflame sensitive throat tissue. According to the Associates in Otolaryngology, other soft, cool foods that soothe an irritated throat following a tonsillectomy are sherbet, custard and Italian ice.
Bland, Soft Foods
Once you are able to tolerate liquids, you should be able to safely consume bland, soft foods. Foods that are easy to chew and swallow should be added to your daily diet as soon as you feel you can tolerate solid foods. Bland foods that should be easy on your throat include scrambled eggs, macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes. Make sure not to add a lot of spices to these foods, because certain spices may irritate the lining of your throat and cause additional throat pain. In addition, stay away from spicy, crunchy or rough foods such as corn chips and popcorn. The Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota state that you should only have to continue the soft diet for 1 to 2 weeks, after which you can slowly move on to your normal diet.
Is this an emergency? If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, please see the National Library of Medicine’s list of signs you need emergency medical attention or call 911.