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How to Prepare Your Aging Parent for Surgery

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Regardless of the type of procedure your loved one is undergoing, there are a few things caregivers and family members can do to ensure the surgery goes smoothly and the recovery is as comfortable as possible. The New Hampshire senior care professionals at Home Care Assistance offer the following tips to help you prepare your senior loved one for surgery.

Improve Accessibility at Home

If your senior loved one is having knee or hip surgery, you may wish to make the home easier to navigate for when he or she returns after the procedure. Even if your loved one will not be using a wheelchair or walker, some adjustments can still help. These include moving him or her into a downstairs bedroom if they live in a multistory home, shifting furniture to widen walkways and allow for easier movement, and moving commonly used items to lower shelves for easy reach.

Ask for Prescriptions in Advance

Speak with your loved one’s physician prior to surgery and ask if he or she can send prescriptions to the pharmacy ahead of time. This will ensure your loved one isn’t waiting several hours for necessary medications, like analgesics, anti-inflammatory medication, or antibiotics. These may be very much needed soon after release from the hospital, especially pain medications since recovery from surgery can be extremely uncomfortable at the best of times.

Encourage a Good Night’s Sleep

A rested body is better able to respond to stress and discomfort and better able to heal and recover from surgery. Sleep can be difficult for seniors, but in this case, encouraging your loved one to get a full 8 hours is worthwhile. However, he or she should only use sleep aids with the express permission of the doctor handling the surgery to avoid complications later on.

Review Pre-Surgical Instructions

Many physicians provide their surgery patients with specific instructions about what to do and what not to do in the hours, days, or week prior to a procedure. You should read these guidelines for yourself, if possible, and go over them with your senior relative. These instructions can provide valuable information and safety tips that can improve the outcome of his or her upcoming procedure. If you have questions, call the doctor’s office for clarification.

Ensure your senior loved one has all the support he or she needs for a comfortable and efficient recovery with help from Home Care Assistance. Our hourly and live-in caregivers in New Hampshire can be present when your loved one is discharged and help with the transition home, provide mobility support, pick-up medications, and assist with everyday tasks around the house. To learn more about our care services, please call (603) 471-3004 to speak with a dedicated Care Manager.