At some point in our lives, just about all of us will undergo some operation or medical complication that needs to be resolved and which, in turn, has to be followed up by a period of recovery.
Fortunately, in this day and age, surgery is more effective and lower in risk than it’s ever been before, and recovery times for minor to moderate procedures is often fairly manageable.
Nonetheless, it can still be tough figuring out how to properly take care of ourselves and go through the recovery process in the best, quickest, and least troublesome way possible, whether we’re dealing with c section recovery or with the ice-cream-heavy recovery that will typically follow a tonsillectomy.
Without further ado, here are a few tips for recovering after an operation or medical procedure.
Tips for recovering after an operation
Rest, but don’t be completely passive
Of course, after an operation, one of the most important things for a quick and successful recovery is plenty. You should by all means book enough time off work, get as much sleep and good food as you feel like you need, and take whatever other steps seem appropriate in order to ensure that you’re in a low-stress environment where recovery can happen unimpeded.
People are generally, but not always, quite good at this part of the equation. Of course, you’ll always have the odd fitness fanatic who thinks it’s a good idea to try and do CrossFit the day after being discharged from hospital, but these types are, fortunately, the exception.
The thing is, however, that while resting, you should not be completely passive, either. Too much passivity can lead to stress all on its own, through extreme boredom, a lack of necessary baseline physical activity, and so on.
While recovering, engage your mind by reading books and watching interesting shows, for example. And try and move around the house a bit each day, too.
Stay in touch with family and loved ones and lean on them for support
Family and loved ones are often indispensable in the recovery process, and can provide a wealth of emotional support that can improve health all on its own.
Family and loved ones may also be able to help in more direct, practical ways, too. Such as, for example, by helping you to move around or by shopping for you if you are experiencing limited mobility.
Try and arrange things so that, if at all possible, you have your partner, or a trusted relative or friend, on hand to help you out during your recovery period.
Use your “downtime” to plan for the future
To avoid feeling like you’re wasting your time, and therefore to avoid becoming despondent, stressed, jaded, and depressed, during your downtime, you should keep your eyes fixed on the future.
Specifically, you should use some of your
What do you want to accomplish once you’ve recovered significantly? How are you going to go about accomplishing it? What will your daily systems and routines look like?
Simply developing a meaningful and valued goal and plan for the future can aid the recovery process dramatically, and keep spirits up during a tough period.