Whether you have had or are about to have spine surgery, you will want to take certain steps to help your back to heal as quickly, safely, and effectively as possible. After all, you know that back surgery can involve complications if you’re not careful.
Your spine surgery procedure is only the first piece of the puzzle – you will then want to strictly adhere to your spine surgeon’s recommendations. Let’s talk about a few key tips for achieving a faster recovery after having spine surgery, and where you can go across the greater Denver and Colorado Springs area to see an outstanding spine doctor.
Control Pain After Spine Surgery
Pain management is an important factor after having any kind of surgery. Your spine surgeon will prescribe you a pain reliever, with specific instructions regarding when and how often to take it.
If your pain is growing in intensity, do not take more than the prescribed dosage – instead, contact your spine doctor directly. Do not hesitate to do this, because you might have a post-surgery infection that must be addressed.
In addition to the pain medication, you can also alleviate your back pain with massage, gentle exercise, moist heat, and rest. Note: Do not apply heat if you are experiencing swelling in the area.
Mind Your Posture
Your posture after having back surgery plays an important role in your recovery. Your spine surgeon will explain how to properly sit down and lie down after having spine surgery.
Since sitting puts the most pressure on your back, your spine surgeon will suggest how long you can remain seated in one position after surgery. Spine surgeons usually recommend getting up every 30 minutes and walking around.
After the surgery, do not sit with your knees above your hips. If a chair would put you in this position, place a pillow on the seat before sitting down. Add a raised seat and side arms to your toilet in order to prevent stress on your back while sitting down and getting up.
When standing up from the sitting position, move your hips to the end of the seat, and use your arms to push yourself up while simultaneously pushing down your legs. This will put the least amount of pressure on your back.
Your spine surgeon will also instruct you how to get into bed, lie down, and get up again to take the stress off of your spine. The most common recommendations are as follows:
- Sleep on your back while keeping your shoulders, upper back, and head raised. You can use an adjustable bed or supporting pillows to maintain this position.
- Keep your knees slightly bent by placing a pillow beneath your knees.
- To get out of bed, bend your knees and keep them together while lying on your back. Roll upward onto one of your sides, keeping your shoulders and hips in line, and turn at the same time to prevent twisting your spine. Push yourself up with your arms.
Follow Recommendations for Exercise and Physical Therapy
After spinal surgery, you should gradually establish your daily physical activities. Your spine surgeon will provide detailed and individualized instructions, explaining when to start exercising and engaging in other physical activities.
You can begin physical therapy the day after your spine surgery. Physical therapy will help you regain your strength, flexibility, and endurance.
Spine Surgery in Colorado Springs and Denver
At Front Range Spine and Neurosurgery, our board-certified spine surgeons are likely to recommend nonsurgical treatment options first. However, if these treatments fail to provide relief, your back doctor will probably recommend surgery that is suitable for your needs. Your spine surgeon will also provide after-surgery instructions for quick recovery.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our spine surgeons by calling us at (303) 790-1800, or fill out our appointment request form online. We look forward to being your back specialists!