Thursday, June 04, 2020

Doctor Recommendations for Post-Surgery Recovery

You have done all your research and prepared for your surgery. No matter the surgery that you are having, the post-surgery recovery is just as important. If done properly and following your doctor’s order, healing and recovery should happen quickly so you can return to normal life. Here are a few recommendations to aid in a speedy post-surgery recovery.

Get Plenty of Rest

Rest is one of the most important steps in recovery. Even if you had a simple laparoscopic surgery with only a small incision, your body has still been taxed both mentally and physically from the procedure. It is recommended that you stay in bed rest for at least 24 hours and possibly more depending on the surgery. When on bed rest and movement is minimal, the elevation of your legs is also important. Resting in bed and not moving around much increases your risk for blood clots or thrombosis. Smart beds can help to ease this problem by allowing elevation of legs and other limbs.

Once you are ready to start moving gradually. This will also prevent blood clots. Start by just walking around your home and eventually take a few steps outdoors. If you start to feel ill, take a rest.

Use Medication as Directed

After surgery, you probably received pain medications. It is important to use these pain medications so you heal properly. Many people don’t enjoy taking pain medications because they can make you foggy or unable to think straight. However, not taking your medication can make your recovery take much longer. People in pain tend not to move around as much, which can lead to blood clots, especially in the legs. If you are in pain, you also tend not to cough as much. Coughing after surgery is important to prevent respiratory disease and pneumonia.

Antibiotics will probably be prescribed as well. Although you may be feeling better and your incision appears healed, it is still very important you finish your full round of antibiotics. If you were to stop early, your body will build immunity to all the antibiotics in the same class. This means when you need antibiotics, they won’t work as well in the future.

Eat Healthy and Hydrate

Post-surgery you will want to keep your body as healthy as can be. Eat more healthy foods like fruits and vegetables and do your best to avoid processed foods with lots of sugar, fat, and salt. It might be a good idea to prepare some healthy meals before your surgery so you're not eating out or straining yourself to cook. You should consult your doctor about what food to eat and not eat.

Hydration is also important to keep your body healthy. Doctors recommended having between nine and thirteen cups a day after surgery instead of the normal eight cups. Hydration helps your body by flushing your kidneys, keeps your digestive system running smoothly, lowers your risk of blood clots, and increases the number of nutrients brought to your cells. If plain water is not appealing to you, add sliced fruits for flavor.

Prevent Infection

Infection can occur easily in your incision if you are not monitoring it. The best thing you can do is follow your doctor's directions. Checking your incision for proper healing several times a day is important. Look for odd coloration, oozing, fluid leaking, or anything else unusual. If you feel your incision has become infected, contact your doctor for further treatment.

Go to Your Follow-up Appointments

Many people won’t go to their follow-up appointment if they’re feeling well and their incision looks good. Your doctor will ask how you feel and look at your incision, but they will look for other things too. They will look for less obvious signs of infection, making sure treatment is adequate, and adjusting medications. You should attend all of your follow-ups appointments whether it is two weeks or ten weeks post-surgery.

Recovering from surgery is just as important as preparing. Your doctor is your best resource for all your after surgery questions from how long you should stay on bed rest to what kinds of foods you should be eating. This list will also help in your recovery and lead to a healthy recovery.

This is a blog post by Nancy Evans.

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