You might not be ready to think about your recovery yet. Perhaps you are still trying to wrap your head around the fact that you need back pain surgery. As you mentally prepare for surgery, you should also take the time to think about your recovery.
Your surgical team will have answers
Recovery after back pain surgery is almost as important as the surgery itself. There are specific instructions you must follow the day of surgery, the week of surgery, and perhaps for several weeks after surgery. You may need to undergo physical therapy and/or occupational therapy. Rehabilitation after back pain surgery is incredibly important and will determine in large part how successful your surgery ultimately is. Your surgical team should have specific instructions that they can give you to help guide you through your postsurgical recovery.
Turn your home into a recovery center before your surgery
People who have recently undergone neck or back surgery are pretty helpless. This is normal, but can be frustrating if proper preparations are not made. Recovery from back pain surgery is almost impossible to do by yourself. Make sure you have at least one other person who can help you do the daily tasks you now take for granted such as preparing meals, household cleaning, and transportation. The focus should be on convenience and on health. You may want to prepare healthy meals and freeze them before surgery so they can be re-seated and served with little effort. Make sure you have access to prescriptions, especially pain medicines and antibiotics along with your standard medicines. Do you have someone who can help you get to physical therapy? If not, make sure to arrange in-home physical therapy if possible. Do as much as you can before surgery so you can focus on healing after back pain surgery.
Know your timeline and stick to it
Finally, make sure you know the timeline of your recovery. Understand how long you will be in the hospital after your procedure, when you can drive, when you can lift light weights, and when you can return to normal activities. Rehabilitation after back pain surgery is ideal when you can find the line between motivation and overextending yourself. By sticking to your timeline, you can complete the exercises that will help you heal without overburdening and re-injuring yourself by pushing too hard. Proper recovery from back pain surgery is a balance of healing and physical exertion.