If Casey Leong MD determines that back surgery is the best way for you to alleviate pain and regain function, you are probably a little worried about how it will turn out. Fortunately, there is a lot you can do to ensure recovery is as smooth as possible. Preparing for back surgery involves making some adjustments in your home so that you can still function with ease while recovering. Besides that, you also need to prepare physically and psychologically. The following steps will make your surgery and recovery successful.
Get a toilet riser
Risers sit on top of your existing toilet seat, elevating it slightly. You don’t have to bend profoundly through your knees, hips, and back to use the restroom. You will appreciate having a toilet riser, especially in the first few days or weeks after surgery. You also want to install handles in your toilet for extra support whenever you need to bend. Ensure you also have the handles in your bathroom and any place you might need additional support.
Buy a grabber
You will have limited mobility a few days or weeks after back surgery, so you want to invest in a grabber. It is a lightweight pole that you can use to pick up dropped items, including a pen or socks. It has a handle that allows you to control pinchers at the end. Bending is the last thing you want to do after back surgery since this can worsen the pain and lead to further complications. A grabber also comes in handy to retrieve any items you forgot to place at the torso level when preparing your home.
It is vital to quit smoking in the months leading up to surgery. The nicotine in tobacco constricts your blood vessels, limiting oxygen and nutrient supply in your body, including your back. Therefore, smoking interferes with healing after surgery and puts you at risk of complications, including infection. Smoking also interferes with pain medications, so it predisposes you to the risk of chronic pain even after surgery. For this reason, doctors caution against smoking before and even after the procedure. Besides causing complications after surgery, smoking can cause lung and colon cancers.
Eating healthy foods is essential, especially after surgery, since it helps you feel better during that period. If you can, before surgery, prepare easy-to-heat-up meals to last you several days after surgery. You also want to stock your freezer with prepped meals since you might not have the mobility to do a lot of cooking. During your recovery, you will be grateful that you meal prepared your meals before surgery.
Review your medications
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications such as aspirin and ibuprofen cause blood thinning, raising your risk of surgery problems. Therefore, as your doctor advises, you should wean off these medications and supplements. Other drugs, including heart medications and supplements like omega-three fatty acids, cause blood thinning and interfere with anesthesia effects. Therefore, inform your doctor of all the medicines and supplements you might be taking and follow your provider’s instructions.
If you are scheduled to have back surgery, consult your doctor at Spine Center Atlanta to know what you should and should not do.