Whether it is a minor surgery involving little risk to life or a highly complex life changing one, undergoing surgery can be a traumatic and terrifying experience for most adults. More than the physical health, it is the emotional and psychological well-being of a person that needs to be considered as preoperative anxiety plays a significant role in determining the success or failure of surgery. A recent study revealed that over 40% adults experience high levels of anxiety both during and after undergoing surgery which adversely affects their health and prolongs the recovery period. If you or your loved ones are planning to get a surgery done in the near future, then here’s how you can prepare for it well in advance and make the experience less stressful.
- Know your facts: Learn everything about the procedure, complications, precautions, etc. from a reliable medical source. Several hospitals already have a set of descriptive videos on common surgical procedures such as total knee replacement to prepare the patient. Explaining the entire process to a friend can also boost your confidence and help you feel assured about what is going to happen during the surgery.
- Share your concerns: Sit with your surgeon and get all your queries answered. Your questions could range from the aftereffects of surgery to precautions you must take in the days prior to surgery. Several studies have revealed that well informed patients tend to get less anxious during surgery as compared to those who are ignorant or misinformed.
- Have a support group: Undergoing surgery can take a toll on a person’s mental health and it is best to keep your family and loved ones close for emotional support. Getting love, care and affection can reduce anxiety and help in keeping the person calm and composed.
- Check the medical stock: Make sure that all the medical drugs and sedatives required during the surgery are available. You can also speak to your anesthesiologist about pain management techniques and get some tips to facilitate recovery.
- Try a relaxing technique: Techniques such as scent therapy, touch therapy and pet therapy can calm the patient’s nerves. Listening to soothing music while waiting for the surgery can also reduce anxiety and uplift the patient’s mood.
- Pack for the hospital: Depending on the duration of your stay, carry all the important things with you. Certain personal possessions can bring about comfort and make you feel at home. You could carry a light book to keep yourself busy and positive.
Additionally, you can exercise to maintain your level of fitness, eat healthy, get adequate rest and drink plenty of fluids to prepare your body for the medical procedure. An optimistic attitude and positive frame of mind can reduce the risk of complications and also shorten the recovery period. If you still have any concerns then it is best to share them with a medical professional who can enlighten you with the accurate facts and dispel any misplaced doubts regarding the surgery.