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  • Writer's pictureTanya Louise

Health: How To Take Care Of Yourself After An Operation

A couple of months ago I had to have an operation. Like me, many people have to undergo operations every year, from the routine operations, such as removing the gallbladder, to the much more intensive and severe operations linked to cancer treatment like like my own. We are incredibly lucky to have the technology, the skill, with some fantastic human interaction that means we can treat and cure many conditions now. It is incredible just how far medical intervention has come, but post-operative recovery can sometimes be a long and complicated road. Of course, the very first thing you need to do is follow all the advice from the medical professionals, and follow it carefully, but some self-care tips will help you on the road to recovery quickly. 


Resting after an operation will, of course, be the first piece of advice you will receive from a doctor. Still, a lot of people find it challenging to do this, especially if they had an active lifestyle before the operation. However if you listen to your body and rest when your body needs rest, and take it easy when your body gives you clear signs to take it easy, then eventually you should find the right balance and strength will be gradually restored. The trick to resting is to find a comfortable spot, either to read or maybe take a nap, but there are no rules, do whatever works best for you, and you will find a happy balance.

Food and hydration

Depending on the type of operation that you have had, you may find you have some digestive disruption, so taking it easy, and making sure that you are eating little and often, with a relatively high fibre diet, will ensure that everything moves in the right direction. Food is a great way to help your body heal as well since you will find plenty of nutritious foods that will repair your body. Plenty of food with antioxidants can be found, such as blueberries and cranberries, but it's always good to check any change in diet with your doctor as well. Sometimes you can only stomach certain things after an operation, and it can be a little off putting, especially if your digestive system has been upset in some way. But just keeping hydrated is, of course, the priority to start with.

Gentle exercise

When you're ready, you must start taking gentle exercise sooner rather than later. The quicker you start to move your body the less chance you have of suffering from conditions such as adhesions, blood clots and constipation. But it must be at a sensible pace, you can't go back to the gym until you've been signed off by a doctor, so just take gentle walks, and go from there. Don't forget you may have some new limitations after an operation that may mean certain things you used to do maybe more difficult than before. But don't let this get you down since you should eventually get back to where are used to be with a little perseverance.

Ultimately practising self-care, and being gentle with yourself after an operation are the first things to do, and take advice from your doctor seriously.

Love Tx


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