Heading into surgery can be unsettling and nerve-wracking, but it doesn’t have to be. Proper planning and preparation can help calm your nerves and result in the best outcome possible so you can focus on healing. Follow these tips to best prepare for your next surgical operation.
Think About Your Options
Before committing to a procedure, discuss your options with your healthcare provider and take some time to think everything over. Surgeries aren’t procedures that you should rush into. Make sure you consider all alternatives and weigh the pros and cons before committing, and don’t be afraid to seek a second opinion.
Choose a Skilled Surgical Team
One thing is for certain: You will want to choose the most experienced surgeon and surgical team possible – preferably one that specializes in procedures like the one you’re about to undergo. A good way to ensure you get the best surgical team is to schedule your surgery at a hospital known for successfully performing the procedure. For example, if your procedure is cancer-related, make sure your surgery is scheduled at a hospital that specializes in cancer surgeries and has a high survival rate.
Follow All Pre-Surgery Instructions
Your pre-surgery instructions will depend on the exact surgery you require. They can be as simple as getting plenty of sleep the night before or eating a good, healthy breakfast. Other types of surgeries may require you to fast beforehand or quit smoking a few weeks before the surgery. Fortunately, your doctor will always inform you of your pre-surgery instructions so you can show up ready to go.
Educate Yourself on Potential Complications
It’s always best to go into any type of surgery hoping for the best outcome, but it’s also important to be aware of post-surgical complications. Being aware of possible complications can even help in the post-surgery and recovery period. In addition to proactively researching potential complications, your surgical team will educate you on the more common complications, how to spot them, what to do if you experience complications, and when to seek medical assistance.
Have Your Home Team Go to Bat for You
For many people, having a support network during the recovery period is key. Let your network help make your follow-up care appointments, drive you to and from your appointments, or look after children while you rest. Having a strong team at home supporting you often results in a quicker and easier recovery.
If you’re nervous or have any questions regarding your impending procedure, talk with your care provider. They are there to help.