It’s simple: You just follow your doctor’s instructions, right? Actually, getting ready for surgery requires more than following a list of steps because you also need to prepare mentally, emotionally, and maybe even spiritually.
Surgery always entails risk, even if you have the best team of doctors armed with the most modern technology on your side. But with the right prep work on your part, you’ll be in your best possible state going into the OR, which could improve your recovery time.
Before going under the knife, make sure you’ve carefully researched your surgeon and medical facility. You should have a rapport with your doctor, no matter what type of procedure you’re facing.
If you don’t feel 100 percent comfortable talking to the surgeon about the process, why should you trust him or her with such an important procedure? Don’t allow price to be a factor in your decision, read as many reviews as possible, see before and after photos if possible, and always check the doctor’s legal history for any malpractice lawsuits.
Getting ready emotionally and mentally
Stress can accomplish incredible things, both good and bad. It’s best to go into any surgery as rested and mentally prepared as possible.
This usually means taking care of any work that you can beforehand, whether it’s at the office or ensuring that babysitting is covered. Planning a quicker recovery than recommended and “powering through” isn’t a wise idea.
If possible, and if your surgery is solidly scheduled, work ahead and take care of any tasks such as bills to be paid so you can focus squarely on recovery.
This is also a time to talk in depth with family, friends, loved ones, and possibly even a therapist about any concerns you may have. Even if the surgery has a high success rate, it’s normal to feel some trepidation.
Talking it out can do wonders and even spur your healing process. If you go into surgery with bottled up concerns, you’re setting yourself up for a longer and more challenging recovery.
Getting ready physically
Your doctor will explain the steps you need to take prior to surgery, but eating healthy and exercising can also constitute excellent preparation. Your body is a machine and it needs the right fuel in order to work at optimal levels.
It’s a huge mistake to slack off on your exercise regimen or healthy eating habits with the excuse that you’ll be “stuck in bed anyway” fairly soon.
Finally, if you’re a spiritual or religious person, now’s the time to turn to your faith for a little extra support. Consult with a spiritual guide if you like; spend some time in reflection, and ask people to send positive vibes your way.
A strong and positive spiritual state will set the tone for a better recovery.