We at the SHAW Center are proud of the variety of outpatient, minimally invasive treatments that we offer that can change a life, or an outlook, with just a few hours of surgical “adjustment” and minimal recovery time for the patient. But there are certainly circumstances when a greater amount of surgery in called for, and the recovery time for the patient is increased. Preparation for these circumstances, such as a “tummy-tuck,” will need more planning and organization to assure the optimum, least stressful, outcome.
First of all, listen closely to the physician and the staff as they explain the procedure, and don’t be afraid to ask specific questions regarding recovery times. How many days will you be “off your feet?” Some recovery conditions make it imperative that there is minimal movement during the first few days. This means arrangements will have to be made to provide meals and laundry service for you and your family, not to mention making arrangements for car-pooling and other duties. You can’t be bouncing in and out of bed to find someone’s shirt or shoes. No matter how supportive your spouse might be, taking on all your duties can be daunting.
This leads to the issue of whom you tell about your surgery, as we covered in a prior issue of The SHAW Center Blog. If you have another close, discreet friend or family member upon whom you can rely to help cover you during your recovery, that’s excellent. You will need at least one trusted advocate to help you make decisions. It is too confusing to have a committee of well-meaning people inundating you with their personal opinions.
This is why many women would prefer not to get outside family too involved. In such cases, it makes perfect sense, and is extremely acceptable, to look into services available in the community that can take up the slack. Investigate grocery delivery services in your area. There are many temporary maid services that can cover the household chores and on-call nursing services to attend to your specific recovery needs, as there are many mother’s helper or errand-running services, that can also provide valuable assistance. Perhaps the staff will even know of such services, and be willing to recommend the most reliable ones.
This is the time to contact your insurance company to find out exactly what will be covered. You might qualify to have in-home care covered. See if you can have post-operative medications filled ahead of time.
Your first priority is your healthy recovery. This is no time to be thinking of yourself as a Super-Woman. You have to acknowledge that there will be down-time and prepare for it. The belief that “nothing’s gonna’ break my stride,” is what gets many women into overwhelming situations, unprepared for the physical and emotional strain of a major surgery. Recovery is a relatively small amount of time, compared to the rest of one’s life. As so many women have joyfully noted, the benefits of having the surgery far outweigh the amount of inconvenience and discomfort that come with the recovery time. We here at The SHAW Center want to do everything we can to help you have that joyful feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment of a well-planned surgical recovery.