Having an operation can put a big strain on the body. A minor operation may just mean a small loss of blood and a wound to be repaired, which is not too traumatic for you or your body. But a major operation can lead physical and mental stress and it is good to prepare yourself for this.
- Preparing Physically:
Your body may lose blood and need to repair a large wound after an operation. The hospital staff will give you as much medication to help you with this, but it is good if you can prepare your body too. In order to repair well, it will need to be nutritionally balanced and so eating well beforehand is a good idea. It can also be good to be physically fit and not be overweight or underweight. These should help your body to get through the operation better and recover better too. If you are unwell and therefore are having an operation because of an illness, then this may be more difficult, but do the best that you can.
- Preparing Mentally:
Some people find that the best way to prepare themselves for an operation is to know exactly what is wrong with them, what is going to be done and how that will help. Stress of the unknown can often be greater than knowing what will happen and what the risks are. You will know whether you need to know these things and as well as speaking to your doctor, you will be able to do your own research online to find out as much as you can.Other people find it better not to know. They get scared of the thought of an operation and so would rather forget all about it and avoid thinking about it at all.
It is good to try to lower your stress levels as much as you can. It may not be easy but try to use relaxation and meditation techniques to get your mind relaxed.
It is also good to think about what will happen after the operation. Learn about the recovery process and what you will need to do to help yourself. You may need lots of rest, physiotherapy, a course of medication. Understand what you will need to do so that you can prepare for that as well.
- Preparing For Your Recovery:
After your operation you may need some time in hospital. You may need rest at home and time off work. You may not be so physically able, at least to start with, as you were before. This means that you will need to make sure that you can get help with things. You may have someone living with you who will be able to help you, but otherwise you may need to organise some care. You may want to stock up on canned and frozen food, perhaps makes some meals and freeze them and things like that. You may need to organise for someone to clean your house for you. You may also need to prepare for time off work. Consider your finances as well as you may find that your sock pay is less than your usual salary so you may need to try to save some money just in case.
There are a lot of things that you can do to prepare yourself for an operation. Some people do not prepare themselves at all, but if you do, then you should find that things go smoother and your recovery will be shorter and easier.
Rachel is a freelance blogger who occasionally contributes resourceful articles to Medisato.