Top Concerns of Seniors Preparing for Surgery
Surgery always comes with a certain level of risk, even if it is considered routine or popular. For seniors, this can mean dealing with certain concerns before undergoing any medical procedures. This includes:
- Transport. Even if you are able to drive, most surgeries require patients arrange transportation after discharge; they do not allow patients to drive at all for weeks after surgery. This requires finding reliable, safe transport. For more serious surgeries, the driver must be able to lift you in and out of the vehicle, operate your wheelchair and settle you comfortably at home.
- Daily tasks in the home. Rest is one of the most important parts of recovery, and most seniors will require assistance with all kinds of daily tasks, from running to the grocery store and preparing meals to walking the dog and cleaning the home. It’s important that seniors get the right level of assistance during their recovery time to properly support the healing process and prevent falls or post-surgical illness.
- Hygiene. Bathing, grooming and personal hygiene can become a challenge as we age, and this becomes even more difficult after a surgery. During this time, the risk of falls and illness is high, so even typically independent seniors benefit from a more intense level of assistance and will be able to pick up the slack and allow for a faster, safer healing time.
- Rehabilitation. As we age, our bodies find it more difficult to heal and regain the strength needed to live an independent life. Studies have shown that physical, occupational and other wellness therapies play a significant role in building strength and resilience both before and after surgeries, helping to boost recovery, general health and mental wellbeing.
- Being a burden on loved ones. Although many seniors recognize that they can benefit from post-surgical support, many worry about becoming a burden on family and friends. Realizing that caring for a loved one during this time can be a 24-hour job that may require some specialist knowledge (for wound care, for example) and physical strength (to help with bathing, for example), contributes to this perception.