Category: Surgery Recovery | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: May 19, 2016
The prospect of surgery can be a daunting experience because there’s not much you can do during the operation to ensure it goes perfectly. The good news is there are a number of things you can do once you’re discharged from the surgery center to help you take control of your rehab from spine surgery. Today, we share four ways to be the master of your rehabilitation after a back operation.
In order to take control of your rehab, you need to follow four specific steps. Exactly what each step means to you will vary based on a number of factors, but we’ll provide examples for each stage to help you understand some ways to take control of your rehab.
Making a plan is the first step in taking control of your rehab after spine surgery, and it’s an important one. In order to get your rehab off on the right foot, you need to know what you’re supposed to be doing, and you need to come up with a plan to put those actions in motion. This begins with a talk with your doctor. Ask them about dietary restrictions, what therapy exercises you should be performing, what signs to look for in the first few days, and lifestyle modifications you may need. Understanding how your rehab is supposed to progress to key to recovering after spine surgery.
This may seem like the same step as plan, but it’s a crucial stage between understanding your rehab and executing. If you know you’re going to have to miss work for a few days after spine surgery, talk to your boss and see if you can take time off or bring some work home with you. If you’re going to have diet modifications, go shopping before surgery. If you’re going to be unable to drive, ask a friend or family member to help get you or your children from one place to another for a few days. If you’re going to need a ride home from the surgical center, get one lined up beforehand. Organizing your life will make it easier to jump into the execution stage when the time comes.
This is the most important step of any rehab program. If you want to get better, you’ll have to put in the work. You can buy healthy foods and print off therapy exercises, but you’re not going to reap the benefits of those rehab aids if you don’t stick to your plan and follow through with your rehab. It’s not always going to be easy, but your body will thank you for it in the long run.
Readjust and Repeat
The last step is to progress through your rehab and repeat the previous steps. If you start to regain mobility or strength in your spine, don’t stop and don’t just stick to the same plan. Try to work in more intense physical therapy exercises, or push yourself to do more repetitions. Your rehab is probably going to be a weeks- or months-long affair, so you’re going to need to adjust your daily rehab habits as you heal. If the exercises begin to hurt then stop performing the exercises and talk to your doctor. Physical therapy is generally beneficial to strengthening your back as well as to maintain joint mobility.