My daughter (now almost 12) had her tonsils out about a month shy of her fourth birthday. I always like to mention her case in tonsil conversations (and doesn’t that just make you wish you hung out with me!) because she had none of the classic symptoms described above. The ENT described her tonsils as pendulous, meaning they hung down into her throat. She didn’t have infections, she talked fine, and she didn’t snore because when she lay down they were flat against her throat.
What the poor thing couldn’t do was eat. She was a very slow eater, and she used to do this funny thing where she’d store food in her cheeks like a chipmunk. She was underweight, but not drastically so. It was only after the pediatrician identified enlarged tonsils and the ENT identified the funny shape that we figured out that swallowing was difficult for her. After he took them out the surgeon reported that they were “pulpy” and unquestionably removal was the right call.
As for the surgery and recovery, it wasn’t too bad at her age, but it was very smelly: the wet scabs that form over the wound give the kid the most god-awful tomb breath for a few days, but that’s normal. We were also warned by a anaesthesiologist friend to be extremely cautious and conservative when reintroducing solid foods, as the bleeding that can occur if those scabs are disturbed is scary and dangerous. I have heard many times over that the longer you wait the more difficult the procedure is for the patient, and that recovery for adolescents and adults is long and painful.
Hope this helps!