Tom Holland health: Actor earned the nickname ‘Sick Note’ – here’s why

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At the age of nine, Tom Holland attended ballet classes, where a West End choreographer suggested the youngster should audition for the Billy Elliot musical. Once securing the role of Billy Elliot, and on the day of his grand debut, Tom developed tonsillitis. “I got the nickname Sick Note, which frustrates me to my core, even today,” Tom told GQ magazine.

“I was too young to do that show,” he reflected on his experience. “I was incredibly underdeveloped as a kid.”

Tom continued: “I would get sick, or I would be tired, or I would get injured.

“And I’d need to take a break because you’re doing three shows a week, rehearsing every single day.

“Now as an actor I push through everything, because I’m not going to be Sick Note.”

What is tonsillitis?

The NHS explained: “Tonsillitis is an infection of the tonsils at the back of your throat.”

The tonsils at the back of your throat would be red and swollen, with the condition sometimes feeling like a bad cold or the flu.

Symptoms of tonsillitis might include:

  • A sore throat
  • Problems swallowing
  • A high temperature of 38C or above
  • Coughing
  • A headache
  • Feeling sick
  • Earache
  • Feeling tired.

Symptoms may sometimes be “severe”, alongside:

  • Swollen, painful glands in your neck (feels like a lump on the side of your neck)
  • White pus-filled spots on your tonsils
  • Bad breath.

The symptoms of tonsillitis usually disappear after three to four days.

And while tonsillitis is not contagious, most of the infections that cause it, such as colds and flus, are.

To help soothe the symptoms of tonsillitis while the immune system kicks in, it will help to get plenty of rest.

Other helpful measures include drinking cool drinks to soothe the throat and gargling with warm, salty water.

Paracetamol or ibuprofen can also help to address any discomfort from tonsillitis.

Medical treatment options may include: lozenges, throat sprays, and antiseptic solutions.

If symptoms do not go away within four days, it is advisable to tell your doctor.

A blood test might be arranged to see if the condition is glandular fever.

The Epstein-Barr virus causes glandular fever, which will cause tonsillitis not to get better within a few days.

There is no cure for glandular fever, and antibiotics will not work as it is caused by a virus, but it will pass.

Once you have had glandular fever, it is unlikely that you develop the condition again.

Tom Holland will be a guest on BBC One’s The Graham Norton Show, Friday December 3 at 10:35pm.

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