Let the Healing Begin

 

When you get the call from your doctor stating your test results have come back, it’s like time stops. With bated breath, you hang on to every word the doctor says with hopes of good news only to get the news you’ve dreaded—you need surgery. To make matters more challenging, the doctor informs you that this surgery needs to happen within the next few days.

Immediately, as fear grips you, a rush of thoughts go through your head. You begin to think about how much your life will change and how you will get through this period in time. After getting past the initial shock, the planning begins. You reach out to loved ones and friends to let them know the news and immediately you are showered with overwhelming love and support. To your surprise, getting someone to assist you post-surgery was much easier than anticipated.

Being a caregiver requires someone to wear many different hats. Not only do they have to think about the person they’re caring for, they still need to manage your own personal affairs. Providing care for someone after surgery can include everything from planning their medication, cooking their meals, and possibly bathing and dressing them during their recovery. While you’re assisting them in the hospital, it is important to ask a multitude of questions of the nurses and doctors. Specifically, what type of medication would be required post-surgery and if there are any pieces of equipment, such as oxygen machines or portable suction machines that are needed to aid in the healing process.

Take over

Simple things can go a long way. If you are the appointed caregiver during this time, something as small as walking the dog or checking the mail is huge for someone who is immobile. The last thing you want for your loved one is for them to re-injure themselves during recovery. Doing small things can relieve them mentally and physically.

Stay with them

Providing company during recovery is therapeutic. Simply being by their side and providing support can show your loved one how much you care. If you plan to stay beyond the hospital, things such as medication planning and meal planning are invaluable. To reduce anxiety or depression, it is good to sit with your loved one and watch TV, read a book, or pull out some old photos just to reminisce. These simple gestures can promote a positive environment for healing.

Provide comfort

After a surgical procedure, your loved one may be temporarily immobile. It is important that you surround them with things that will keep them comfortable and limit their mobility. Things such as the TV remote, a phone, an extra blanket, magazines, or pen and paper can keep them from moving as much and it also lessens their likelihood of becoming bored.

Cooking and cleaning

Since your loved one will be immobile, it is important that you provide them with great food that will aid in their healing process, nourish their body, and nourish their soul. Meal preparation can be a great time for you and your loved one to bond over a great meal. After all, they’re not going anywhere, so now would be a good time to sit back and enjoy a wonderful meal with your friend. Doing a quick sweep of the kitchen or putting away a few dishes would also help that special person relieve their mind of the million and one things they have on their to-do list.

Be patient and consistent

Understanding that your loved one cannot move about as freely as they normally would, it is important that you pack your patience. Their trips to the bathroom can be slow and arduous, but stay the course with them to ensure they have everything they need. Consistency is another factor that aids in the healing process. You can alleviate anxiety and stress for your loved one by showing up when you say you will.

Healing is a process and takes time. Your patience with your loved one is a virtue. Studies have shown that patients who have the support of family and friends are more likely to follow the medical plan provided by the doctor and have shorter stays in the hospital. Because of this, it is imperative that you show up and support your loved ones during their post-surgery recovery. Let the healing begin.

Comments

  1. This is fantastic information

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