Making the decision to get a total hip replacement can be a tough one. But if your condition has deteriorated so much that you can’t move without pain, it is urgent that you seek the advice of an orthopedic doctor.
If all your treatment options have been exhausted, it’s likely that your orthopedist may recommend a partial or total hip replacement. Your surgeon will look for opportunities to do so arthroscopically or explore options to do a partial hip replacement before deciding whether you may need a full hip replacement.
Prior to your surgery date, though, you’ll want to prepare yourself for the activities to avoid while you are recovering. This can go beyond just stocking the fridge, making a bed for yourself downstairs and enlisting friends or family members to care for you. It will also be important to prepare yourself for the certain activities that you may need to avoid while you are recovering.
Immediately after surgery, you’ll want to arrange a ride home. Even if your surgery was on your left hip, you will need to cease driving for at least 4 weeks. After that, it will be up to you to decide when you feel most comfortable to resume driving. The movement and shifting of your hips when driving can strain the area that is still healing, preventing it from staying firmly in place during your recovery.
Too Much Stretching
It’s a good idea to prepare some meals and snacks and keep them on low shelves in the refrigerator. Since your flexibility and ability to stretch will be at a minimum after surgery, you will want to arrange any pain medications or anything you may need to reach on a low counter, so that you can easily get to them without bending over or getting up on your toes to reach.
This rule is very important! Decreasing the angle between your pelvis and thigh can strain your hip flexor muscles when your hip is at its most vulnerable, putting you at risk for hip dislocation.
You should avoid lifting your knees up too high or bend your torso down too far. This means avoiding sitting in low chairs, putting on your own shoes and socks or even getting into low vehicles.
Crossing Your Legs
Once you start to heal, and the pain starts subsiding, you could actually start to cross your legs even without realizing it. This can open up your vulnerable hip and again, put you at risk for hip dislocation. You’ll want to avoid crossing your legs while standing, sitting, or even while laying down. A wedge pillow can help prevent you from unconsciously crossing your legs in your sleep.
After your hip replacement surgery, continue to stay in contact with your orthopedic surgeon and communicate any struggles you are having that could be jeopardizing your recovery.
Your physical therapist will also be a great resource to have while you heal and can help you devise workarounds for the activities you are trying to avoid.
To learn more about hip pain, hip surgery, or getting more information about a total hip replacement, talk to the experts at Total Orthopaedic Care. With two convenient locations in Pembroke Pines and Lauderdale Lakes, we’re here to help restore you to a better you. Call us at (954) 735-3535 today to make your appointment.