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Adenoidectomy and Tonsilectomy and Imporving a Child's Behavior


My son is currently 4 years old and about three months prior to his birthday, we noticed some behavior changes at school.  My wife and I were about to have twins and we figured it was transitional.  However, he became aggressive at school to the point of smacking teachers, throwing chairs, and generally not following direction.  We ended up changing him to a Catholic School and the behaviors continued.  

Now the question, we scheduled an appointment with a Pediatric Behavioral Doctor, and they required a hearing test.  He came back with a mild hearing loss in each ear.  I scheduled an appointment with an ENT and they looked into his mouth and saw puss coming from his adenoid and his tonsils were large.  He recommended a adenoidectomy and tonsilectomy because of mouth breathing and snoring.  We had the surgery on May 20, 2011 and he was on pain medication until May 28, 2011.  He returned to school on May 31, 2011 and had the best week he's ever had behavior wise.  He now talks more and is generally more pleasant.  He is already sleeping more soundly.  The ENT indicated the Adenoid was very large and was in his nasal cavity.  Today, June 8, 2011, he had a bad day at school, and my wife and I are hoping this is just a blip, that the surgery helped.  Do children with behavior problems who have this surgery improve?  I know he was sleep disturbed, had trouble hearing, and couldn't breathe through his nose.  Should I be prepared for a return of the behaviors, I know he's been under a magnifying glass for so long.
4 Responses
Avatar universal
I think it's just a blip, as far as I know it can really improve their behaviour as it improves their sleeping and health to no end (you already know that!) My girlfriend had her 2 sons with behavioural problems done and it made a world of difference. My 4 year old was done a few weeks before his birthday and had a turbinate reduction too, and we could see a difference straight away. He doesn't have behavioural issues, but we could see he was sleep deprived and cranky alot. (He goes to Montessori School, no issues with his behaviour there luckily) but he is not in 'big school' yet.
Have you tried him on iron supplements? My girlfriend who had her 2 oys done was told to give iron too.
But rest assure, I have 3 boys, they ALL go through phases, just try and ignore the undesirable behaviour and start doing some posaitive reinforcment, that really helps as well. At 4 years old, they don't care if its good or bad attention they get from parents/carers, as long as they are getting it!!

Avatar universal
Thank you for writing back, I think the school has a little to do with some of the behaviors as well.  They didn't have room in the preschool room and placed him Pre-K with the older kids and he's had a rough week.  Today was his last day and he starts summer camp Monday.  It's more play than education, and he'll be with more age appropriate children.  The Catholic School asked for help from the the Intermediate Unit (IEP) and once there in you can't get them out.  So we're hoping for an improvement and fresh start at the new program.  He has changed so much at home and we're so happy.  The teacher indicated that he doesn't recognize letters and numbers yet.  I'm hoping he'll catch up this year when he age appropriately advances to Pre-K.  He's had nine months of hearing loss, not sleeping, and behavior issues.
Avatar universal
I am in Australia, & my son is in kindergarten at a Catholic School, he is 6. There is a boy in his class who is just turned 5 (making him 14 months younger then my son) and the poor boy is in trouble all the time. I think the fact that there is such a big variation in their ages really impacts. This boy can't sit still and can't control his impulses, he is just too young to be in the class.
My other son is at a Montessori Pre-School and he is 4, he doesn't know how to write the alphabet, or numbers yet. I'm lucky if he can sit still long enough to do a puzzle. Having said that, he is much happier, better rested and generally healthier since his T&A 2 months ago.
I'm sure with time, and when your son is with the age appropriate group you'll see a big improvement!
Avatar universal
I'm thinking the same thing.  It was funny, yesterday, he told me my sandwich smelled bad and wanted me to open the window because the air smelled good.  I wish I would have picked up on when he wasn't able to breath through his nose.  He's hearing and repeating things again, it has just been amazing.  He still has his moments but he de-escalates now, sits for time outs, and just an aside.  My son loved puzzles too, used to sit and put them together for hours, liked dress up, and we recently have him on a soccer team (very funny to watch).  He can actually hear and listen to the coach now.  It's been awful here in Pennsylvania, 101 degrees F today.  I think that's playing into some of his bad days, school isn't air conditioned.
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