Knee replacement surgery is when your knee joint is replaced with an artificial one to reinstate knee function. Like all other surgeries, knee replacement surgery requires extra care post-operation. Extra effort in the recovery process can be daunting, but remember, a successful recovery determines a successful surgery as it impacts your overall health and quality of life in the long run.
7 Do’s and Don’ts after Knee Surgery
Knee surgery requires at least six months for recovery, and it can take up to a year to fully recover. The road to recovery is tough, but here are the do’s and don’ts that may help you through the road to recovery.
1. Do follow your doctor’s instructions
Patients often ignore the post-operation care that their surgeon suggests. You must follow all the care instructions, including the physical therapy that your doctor has advised you to do. Though the rehabilitation process can be painful and infuriating, motivate yourself for regular physical therapy to improve your condition. Additionally, take your medication on time, eat a healthy diet and get enough sleep so that your knee heals properly.
2. Don’t overburden your knee
Avoid all activities that may put unnecessary pressure on your knee, such as crossing your legs, jumping, running, lifting heavy objects, etc. Move your whole body while turning instead of your lower body as it increases the risk of twisting your knee. Don’t drive until your doctor is okay with it, as it can slow the healing process of your knee. Avoid any activity that involves intense knee movement so that it doesn’t disrupt the healing process.
3. Do use an ice pack
Pain and swelling are common after knee surgery. Ice packs help in controlling inflammation and managing the pain. After the surgery, use ice packs at least three to four times a day or as recommended by your doctor.
4. Don’t sit for too long
Rest is essential, but sitting for a long time after a knee replacement surgery increases the chances of a blood clot. As per Healthline, sitting for more than 45 to 60 minutes is not recommended. Try to elevate your leg by putting it on a chair if you have to remain in a sitting position for long.
5. Do use support
Crutches or a walker can aid in walking after a knee replacement surgery. Not using these puts extra pressure on your knee and can worsen your condition. Use help where needed, and talk to a physiotherapist who can guide you on using the crutches properly.
Do not put a pillow under your knee. It flexes your knee that can cause problems with extending the knee in the future. You can elevate your leg using a chair or pillow while keeping your legs straight. Lie down in a straight position, and don’t attempt to turn or twist your knee while lying down.
How do you know if something has gone wrong?
Utmost care is a must after knee replacement surgery, as even the slightest mishap can make matters worse for you. More inflammation or pain than usual or unusual warmth around the knee signifies that something might be wrong. Lay off whatever activity you’re doing at that time and apply ice packs or talk to your doctor about it.
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