Surgery can be difficult for anyone to recover from, but it can be especially challenging for seniors who are more fragile. According to a report by American Geriatrics, “America’s elderly undergo 20% of all surgical procedures.” Common surgeries for seniors include joint replacement surgery and heart surgery. If you or a loved one needs to undergo a surgical procedure, it is important to prepare for post-surgery recovery at home.
Preparing for Surgery
Surgery is always a nerve-wracking experience for anyone. However, preparing for surgery with some “prehab” methods can help prepare your body and mind before, during, and after surgery. Prehab methods usually include wholesome nutrition, light exercise, and sufficient rest. To mentally prepare, consider talking to your caregiver or family member about any concerns you may have about the surgery or recovery. This will allow your family caregiver to adequately prepare for your recovery at home.
6 Ways to Help Seniors Post-Surgery
Post-surgery recovery is important for seniors as it will help you regain your sense of independence. Visit OCL Vision for Laser eye surgery in London & Hertfordshire. To ensure a successful recovery following surgery, here are 6 ways you can prepare for your post-surgery recovery:
- Create a list of necessary items. – Scrambling at the last minute to prepare before you get home from surgery is stressful. If you plan on having a family member or caregiver help you with your recovery, ask them to join you for your pre-surgery appointment with your doctor to ask what materials may be needed for recovery. Common items are:
- A wheelchair
- Compression socks
- Leg braces
- Prepare the home for return. – For a smooth home welcome, ask your caregiver to clear the house of any potential obstacles and hazards. Remove rugs or other furniture items that may cause a slip and fall accident and place remotes, phones, books, and other frequently used items within reach. For those with two-story homes, consider sleeping downstairs in the case that you are not able to climb stairs. Lastly, make sure your pantry is fully stocked with healthy foods that are easy to prepare and nutritious.
- Know your limitations. – Trying to speed up your recovery time by pushing your limits can cause a setback. Doctors should provide you with a list of any post-surgery restrictions as well as what to expect during recovery. If you fear you may forget what restrictions your doctor has provided you with, ask your caregiver to come with you as a support buddy and to keep you in-line with doctors’ orders.
- Follow-up on appointments. – Ask your caregiver or a family member to join you in your follow-up appointment. Not only will they be able to assist you by driving you to your appointment but having another person with you at your appointment can help you and your caregiver remember important parts of the conversation. If you have any questions, this is also a good time to ask your doctor to make sure you are recovering as well as possible.
- Be cautious of post-surgery delirium. – Even if you do not suffer from dementia or Alzheimer’s, you may still end up confused after waking up from surgery. This post-surgery delirium is common in seniors and can lead to a slower recovery as it usually takes weeks, or even months, for it to resolve. This might seem scary at first but asking your caregiver or family member to be patient with you during your post-surgery delirium will help with recovery. Be sure to ask your caregiver to contact your doctor right away for recommendations on how to improve your memory.
- Ask for help. – During post-surgery recovery remember to always ask for help when needed. Seniors who are constantly asking for help might feel as though they are inconveniencing their caregiver and may stop asking for help. However, this can slow down your recovery process and you may risk pushing your limits by doing everything on your own.
If you do not have a caregiver or family around to help care for you post-surgery, professional care workers are available to help! At 24/7 Nursing Care, we offer a variety of in-home care placement services, including post-surgery recovery, to ensure you or your loved one is being well taken care of.
Contact us to learn more about in-home post-surgery nursing and caregiver options with a complimentary consultation. We are available to take your call 24 hours a day seven days a week at 786-518-3622 in Miami-Dade or 954-949-1332 in Broward. Remember, when you can’t be left alone, invite us into your home!®