If you're scheduled for surgery, you need to be prepared for the recovery period – especially the time spent at home. You'll need to take steps to ensure a problem-free recovery. Here are some tips that will improve your recovery from surgery.
1. Stop Smoking
If you're a smoker, the best thing you can do is quit smoking before your surgery. Smoking interferes with your bodies ability to fight infections and slows down the healing process. If you don't think you can do it alone, talk to your doctor about options that are available for smoking cessation programs. If you don't want to permanently cut cigarettes out of your life, stop until you're fully healed after surgery.
2. Plan for Constipation
Surgery has a way of slowing down your digestion. Unfortunately, that means you'll be dealing with constipation during your recovery from surgery. The best way to deal with constipation is to stop it before it starts. To help prevent post-operative constipation, drink plenty of water and fiber to your diet. It's also important that you add probiotics – such as the kind found in yogurt – to your diet. If constipation becomes a problem, talk to your doctor about adding a stool softener to your daily routine.
3. Get Up and Move Around
Following surgery, you won't want to move around much. However, that's exactly what you'll need to do. As soon as you're given the go-ahead to get up and move, start walking. You don't want to overdo it, but you do want to get your body moving again. Start by walking around the surgical department of the hospital. Once you get home, continue to walk a little bit more each day. If your surgery is scheduled for winter, and you can't get outside for daily walks, walk around the inside of your house.
4. Follow Through With the Therapy
If your doctor prescribes physical therapy, be sure to follow through with the appointments. Your physical therapy appointments will help get your joints and muscles moving properly again. Not only that, but the added movement will help improve your post-operative circulation and blood flow. It's also important that you see your doctor for those post-operative check-ups – even if you're feeling fine. Your doctor needs to monitor your progress and check for any post-operative problems that you might not recognize.
Don't take chances with your recovery from surgery. The tips provided here, coupled with the post-operative instructions you'll get from your doctor, will help ensure a safe and speedy recovery. Contact a clinic, like Advanced Physical Therapy, for more help.