Healing Completely After TJR
Approximately 1.25 million Americans undergo total joint replacement surgery as one of the most routine procedures annually. Replacing weak or damaged joints can lessen pain associated with movement while improving quality of life. While some people are tempted to resume normal activity immediately after knee replacement, most physicians suggest a gradual approach. To regain strength and overall range of motion quickly, healthcare experts recommend doing daily low-impact exercises focused on building muscle. A full recovery is all about proper preparation and a dedicated rehabilitation plan.
Exercising in the days following surgery is not recommended, although regular low-impact exercise is suggested in the weeks leading up to the joint replacement procedure. With more muscle in the upper body, patients can minimize pressure on the new joint when using crutches or walkers. Movements that build muscles in the legs are also beneficial to offset the impact of muscular atrophy post-surgery.
Nutrients are vital
As with many procedures, a healthy diet is essential for a full recovery. Filling the diet with foods full of calcium, iron, and fiber limits the risk for constipation brought on by any pain medication required for surgery. After the procedure, some patients should consider light meals to avoid any gastrointestinal blockages from anesthesia.
Manage your meds
To lower the risk of medication interactions, patients should discuss medication management in depth before the procedure. Blood-thinning medications such as ibuprofen and aspirin heighten the possibility of potential bleeding after surgery. Patients can avoid possible drug interactions by evaluating current medications while promoting a smooth healing process.
Home is where the healing is
Recovering with all the comforts of home is ideal for most patients. To lower the risk of reinjuring the new joint, some experts suggest avoiding activities with a high risk of falling. To reduce the risk of injury, doctors recommend installing mobility devices such as a raised toilet seat and clearing pathways to avoid tripping in cluttered areas of the home. If applicable, patients can also cook extra meals before the procedure, which can help limit physical activity and elevate nutrient levels.
Returning to daily life
Patients can enjoy peace of mind and pain-free movement with a new joint. Prioritizing a healthy home and body in the weeks and months before surgery will help ensure a speedy recovery. After the procedure, minimizing the possibility of reinjuring the joint as much as possible is paramount to rapidly regaining mobility. While any surgery is an undertaking, patients can adequately prepare by cultivating healthy habits and coordinating the comforts of home during recovery.