LIfe After Surgery of the Spine Should Consist Doctor Follow Ups

Life After Surgery of the Spine & the Important Things To Remeber

Those who have back and neck problems all want to get well, get their lives running, and hopefully get back to work. Surgeries focus on decreasing pain to help people with these problems back to normal. Normally, proper exercise and care are all that's needed but sometimes surgery is required to reestablish the full function of our bodies.

Life After Surgery: In the Hospital

Physical therapy and exercise will probably be a part of your life after surgery in the hospital. Sometimes occupational therapy is also recommended. Therapy will help you regain your strength and ability to perform your usual activities.

You will most likely be gotten up out of bed shortly after your procedure and helped to walk by the nurses or the therapists.

Life After Surgery: After the Hospital

You may still be having some pain when you leave the hospital. Manage your pain using the medication your physician recommended. Some pain medications can cause drowsiness or dizziness, so don’t drive or drink alcohol with these drugs and take them exactly as prescribed.

Your life after surgery should include walking. Start with short walks and gradually increase the amount of time you spend walking. Avoid hills, steps, and uneven ground. Exercise, as part of your life after surgery, will actually help decrease your pain by increasing the blood flow to the area that is healing. It will also help you regain your strength.

Continue any other exercises as you’ve been instructed by your therapists to increase your flexibility.  Practice good posture and avoid bending, twisting and lifting. Your life after surgery should include a healthy diet to help your body heal, and plenty of fluids to help avoid constipation that can be caused by some pain medications.

Life after surgery also includes watching for signs of infection at your procedure site. If you have any of the following signs of infection, call your surgeon right away:

  • A fever of 101 or higher
  • Increased pain
  • Increased redness or swelling at the site of the procedure
  • Increased or foul drainage from your wound or incision

Life After Surgery: On-going Self-Care

Keep all follow-up appointments with your doctor. If you have had spinal fusion surgery, your activities will probably be restricted during the first several months after your operation to ensure the bones heal properly.

Sometimes patients who have had spinal surgery wear a back brace to help keep the back in the correct position. Life after surgery, in this case, involves wearing the brace exactly as directed by your surgeon.

As you resume your life after surgery, gradually resume your normal activities, within the limits set by your surgeon. Some patients are able to return to work within several weeks. If your job requires a lot of physical activity, you may be off work for longer. 

Recovering from surgery on your spine and returning to your usual routine life after surgery takes time. It won't happen overnight so be patient with yourself! One of the most important things you can do is keep the lines of communication with your doctor open. Tell him how you're feeling and what your expectations for life after surgery are. With a rehabilitation plan that is right for you, you will be able to return to your previous way of life after surgery and too many of the activities you enjoy.

Useful Advice

Life after surgery can be hard at first, follow these to help you recover faster after a back surgery.
1. Understand your rehab well. It's important that you talk to your surgeon before undergoing surgery. Ask about what it will be like in the following days or weeks post-surgery. Ask what things you need to have like a walking aid or if you won't be able to work for a few days/week so that you can prepare and make the necessary arrangements.
2. Have a healthy diet. After surgery, it's likely that you'll be staying in bed most of the time. Because of this, you might get tempted to order food or microwaving dinners which can further stall your recovery. Poor diets can cause inflammation and make movement painful. Ask your healthcare provider what the healthy options are so that you can prepare.
3. Rest and Relax. A part of the recovery process is taking good proper rest. Your body will need it especially in the first few days of the surgery, however, you should also do movements and exercises as soon as your body starts to recover because inactivity may slow down the recovery process.
4. Scar Care. No matter what kind of surgical procedure you underwent, it's important to monitor your scar in the days following your surgery. One of the leading causes of re-hospitalization after undergoing spinal surgery is infections. Practice good scar care habits to prevent infections from happening.
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Questions & Answers
Q:
What is the best way to treat permanent back and neck pain and stiffness?
A:

Here are some tips:

Neck Pain Tips: Sleep with a cervical pillow

Orthopedic or cervical pillows are made with special contours to support the space beneath the neck and head. They are also more concave for the head and provide more support to the neck.

Neck Pain Tips: Sleep on your back

The best position to lie to sleep is on your back. If you sleep on your stomach or on your side, make sure your pillow is not too thick. It should raise your head no more than 4 to 6 inches. This will keep your neck and head from turning to either side.

Neck Pain Tips: Position your computer screen at eye level

While you are working at a computer, sit comfortably in your chair with your computer in front of you. Close your eyes and then open them. When you open your eyes, you should see the middle of the computer screen. If your gaze is not in the middle of the screen, adjust the height of the screen using items like books.

To keep your head from gradually drifting forward, take frequent breaks to stretch. Getting up to walk around at least once every half-hour is one of the best neck pain tips.

Neck Pain Tips: Use a telephone headset

Never hold a phone between your shoulder and your ear. Use a headset or other hands-free system to talk on the phone and avoid abusing your neck and spine.

Neck Pain Tips: Exercise your neck muscles

One of the best neck pain tips is using the chin tuck. You can do this often throughout the day. In addition to helping strengthen the muscles that hold the head in alignment over the shoulders, it also helps strengthen the scalene and sub-occipital muscles.

Read more tips here: Neck Pain Tips: Sleeping, Posture, Exercising, Hydration & Prevention

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Temed Holdings
4 answers
Q:
What is the best treatment for neck pain and shoulder Pain?
A:

One of the best treatment for neck pain and shoulder pain is exercises:

Neck Pain Exercises: Neck Extension

  1. To begin this neck pain exercise, sit up straight in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Looking straight ahead, tuck your chin slightly (starting position)
  3. Place the palm of your hand on the back of your neck, at the base of your head
  4. Apply slight forward pressure with your hand, while resisting the forward motion of your neck and head
  5. Hold for a count of 5 and return to the starting position and relax
  6. Repeat the neck pain exercises 5-10 times

Neck pain exercises: Side bend

  1. Sit up straight in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Looking straight ahead, tuck your chin slightly (starting position)
  3. Place your left hand, palm down, on the left side of your head (around your ear)
  4. Slightly push your head to the right side with your hand, while resisting the sideways motion of your neck and head
  5. Hold for a count of 5 and return to the starting position and relax.
  6. Repeat 5-10 times
  7. Repeat the neck pain exercises with the other side.

Neck pain exercises: Neck flexion

  1. Sit up straight in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Looking straight ahead, tuck your chin slightly (starting position)
  3. Place the tips of your fingers on your forehead
  4. Slightly push your head backward with your fingers, while resisting the backward motion of your neck and head
  5. Hold for a count of 5 and return to the starting position and relax.
  6. Repeat the neck pain exercises 5-10 times

More exercises here: Neck Pain Exercises

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Temed Holdings
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Q:
How do I reduce the shoulder and neck pain?
A:

Here are some tips:

Neck Pain Tips: Sleep with a cervical pillow

Orthopedic or cervical pillows are made with special contours to support the space beneath the neck and head. They are also more concave for the head and provide more support to the neck.

Neck Pain Tips: Sleep on your back

The best position to lie to sleep is on your back. If you sleep on your stomach or on your side, make sure your pillow is not too thick. It should raise your head no more than 4 to 6 inches. This will keep your neck and head from turning to either side.

Neck Pain Tips: Position your computer screen at eye level

While you are working at a computer, sit comfortably in your chair with your computer in front of you. Close your eyes and then open them. When you open your eyes, you should see the middle of the computer screen. If your gaze is not in the middle of the screen, adjust the height of the screen using items like books.

To keep your head from gradually drifting forward, take frequent breaks to stretch. Getting up to walk around at least once every half-hour is one of the best neck pain tips.

Neck Pain Tips: Carry weight evenly

Many people make the mistake of carrying a heavy briefcase or their purse on their shoulder or on one side of their body. Doing this causes strain in the muscles and leads to pain.

Remove non-essentials from your briefcase or purse. Consider using a backpack to evenly distribute the weight across your shoulders. If you choose to carry a purse or backpack, keep your shoulders level while carrying it.

Neck Pain Tips: Maintain a proper posture

The most common posture contributing to neck pain is the “head-and-shoulders-forward” posture. In this position, the neck slopes forward, putting the head in front of the shoulders.

In this position, the head pulls the upper back forward also in a slumped position. This places a strain on the entire spinal column.

More tips here: Neck Pain Tips: Sleeping, Posture, Exercising, Hydration & Prevention

Read more
Temed Holdings
4 answers