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Can an Adult Need a Tonsillectomy?

Tonsil removal, also known as a tonsillectomy, is a common procedure among children. Tonsils are bundles of tissue located in the back of your throat. Their role is to protect your body from bacteria and viruses by trapping the germs before they enter the throat. 

Tonsils are one of the first lines of defense against germs, and can often swell up and cause pain as you begin your road to recovery. As we age, our tonsils naturally shrink, limiting the inflammatory reaction to bacteria and viruses. 

In some adults, however, tonsils can remain the same size. This can leave them susceptible to infection and inflammation. 

This article will discuss why some adults need a tonsillectomy. 

When is a Tonsillectomy Needed for Adults?

Many adults have had their tonsils removed as children. The surgery is relatively quick with a short recovery time, including a soft, cold diet consisting of smoothies, frozen yogurt, and ice cream. However, a tonsillectomy can also be performed in adults.

An adult may require a tonsillectomy for several reasons, including:

Persistent Sore Throat

If you find yourself frequently developing a sore throat, your tonsils may be susceptible to inflammation. A tonsillectomy will safely remove your tonsils, freeing you from pain and swelling in the future. 

Sleep Apnea

Swollen tonsils may contribute to or cause sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a condition characterized by decreased breathing during sleep. With swollen tonsils, your airway is partially blocked and is unable to receive proper airflow. 

Tonsil Abscess

An abscess is a collection of pus resulting from an infection. Tonsillectomies are recommended for tonsil abscesses. They remove the source of the infection and provide long-term relief from throat pain.

If you’re suffering from chronic throat pain, consider ENT Associates. Our specialists are experienced in treating conditions involving the ear, nose, and throat. Contact us to schedule a consultation


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