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Adjustments to Lifestyle After Surgery

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 19 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Lifestyle Adjustments After Surgery

As you are getting over hospital surgery, your main thoughts are likely to turn towards your recovery and about the quality of life you’re likely to experience both in the short and long-term.

In addition to the medical team providing you with plenty of comprehensive information about how you should best continue with your recovery program once you have been discharged, it is quite possible that you will be required to make some kind of lifestyle changes if you want the surgery and your recovery to be as complete and as successful as possible.

Obviously, any lifestyle changes that you may be required to make will vary depending upon the type of surgery you’ve undergone and may also be affected and adapted due to other factors based around your own individual circumstances.

However, your medical team will provide you with all the necessary information you need before you leave hospital and you will also be given the opportunity to ask them any questions relating to future lifestyle adjustments as well. Here are some of the more common issues that you may need to consider.

Returning To Work

The hospital will usually be able to recommend an approximate date by which you can start considering a return to work. This may vary greatly depending on the type of surgery you’ve had and also the nature of your particular job. Obviously, if your job involves extremely physical labour, your return to work may be delayed for a longer period than, say, if you have a relatively sedentary job in an office.

In some circumstances, it may well be that the hospital recommends that the type of job you had been doing prior to surgery is no longer conducive to your recovery so it may well be that you need to look for an alternative job or, in extreme circumstances, you may well be advised to give up work altogether.

Resuming Everyday Activities

As with a return to work, one of the other major frustrations for patients who have undergone surgery is the adjustments they might have to make either temporary or permanently with regard to the resumption of their everyday activities.

This can range from needing to obtain help in the short term with, say, some of the care of young children you might have to the likes of having to give up a particular hobby or sporting activity that would hamper your recovery were you to continue pursuing it. This might be something that is recommended in the short to medium term or, in some cases depending on the surgery itself, you may even be advised to give up a particular activity altogether.

On the other hand, if you were a relatively inactive person before you underwent surgery, your medical team might strongly urge you to take up some form of exercise, once the time is right, if you want the surgery to be a success as it’s often the case that surgery by itself is not sufficient and that other measures might also be necessary if you want to make as complete a recovery as possible.

Other Lifestyle Adjustments

In addition to the adjustments you may need to make regarding your work and other normal everyday activities, you might also be advised to make other lifestyle adjustments that are necessary to your recovery. Things such as giving up smoking or reducing your alcohol intake or giving it up altogether and, perhaps, modifying your diet in some way and the need to take regular medication are just some of the more common aspects of lifestyle adjustments that you may need to make.

Obviously, certain lifestyle adjustments may be more difficult to adapt to than others but you will be given plenty of advice and support on how you can achieve any lifestyle changes that may be advised.

Ultimately, any advice and recommendations that are made are given because the medical team want to give you the best possible opportunity to make as full a recovery as can be expected and for some people, a return to a completely ‘normal’ lifestyle will be easier for some people than for others.

However, it is important that you make every effort to alter and adjust to any lifestyle changes that are recommended because by not doing so, you’re only likely to be putting your health at further risk or from suffering a relapse or a recurrence of the problem that you were admitted to hospital for in the first place.

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