Helping an Aging Parent Prepare for Hip Surgery

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Preparing Elderly for Hip Surgery

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Although hip surgery is performed with the goal of alleviating hip pain, El Dorado County elder care professionals note that this procedure commonly entails a lengthy and very challenging recovery process. Seniors will experience a considerable amount of discomfort and they will also have to deal with a marked decline in autonomy due to compromised mobility and a need to rely heavily upon others for basic needs. Helping aging adults prepare for these procedures is the best way to ensure that recovery efforts are as comfortable and stress-free as possible.

Consult with a Pain Management Clinic

Working in advance of hip surgery to create a balanced pain management plan is the best way to avoid over-reliance on prescription pain medications. Seniors can learn psychological strategies for controlling their pain such as distraction, deep or diaphragmatic breathing, and mindfulness. Pain management clinics, functional medicine centers, and other medical facilities with a strong focus on alternative and natural care may even be able to share strategies for expediting the healing process.

Establish a Comfortable and Well-Equipped Recovery Area

Seniors should have comfortable recovery areas that are stocked with plenty of engaging activities. Hip surgery creates a considerable amount of downtime and without some form of entertainment, boredom, loneliness and depression can set in. The recovery area can include a laptop or tablet for connecting with family and friends online, puzzles, books and drawing or painting implements. In addition to being engaging, many of these activities can also be therapeutic. Seniors should also have the ability to lay at various angles and change positions with ease, given that holding a single position too long could prove painful.

Chose the Right Clothing and Assistive Devices

As recovery progresses, seniors often discover that resuming regular activities is still a major challenge. Securing the right garments and assistive devices ahead of a hip replacement procedure will help seniors quickly reclaim their independence as this becomes physically possible. There are a number of online support groups and social communities for aging adults that provide firsthand information from hip replacement patients about the best assistive products and garments to use after these procedures. Being able to dress, sit-up, and even stand with minimal assistance can have a very positive impact on senior emotions.

Establish Feasible Expectations

Family members and caregivers should also meet with the attending surgeons for these procedures in order to know more about the recovery process and the required aftercare. Consultation appointments give seniors the best opportunity to establish feasible expectations for their procedures and the ensuing downtime. This is also a great time to get detailed written instructions for aftercare and all related medication as well as referrals to local pain management clinics and functional medicine centers.

Make sure your senior loved one has all the support he or she needs after surgery for a safe and comfortable recovery with help from Home Care Assistance. Our part-time and live-in caregivers in El Dorado County can help with the hospital-to-home transition, run errands, cook, clean, offer mobility support, and provide companionship among other things. For more information on our post-hospital care services, call a friendly Care Manager at (916) 358-3801 or (530) 409-4411.