What are the best ways to mentally and physically prepare for surgery? Read our health checklist to learn what you need to know.

Health Checklist: How to Prepare for Surgery

Approximately 234.2 million surgeries are performed worldwide every year. Moreover, research suggests that the average person undergoes several surgeries in their lifetime. 

If you need surgery soon, you likely feel nervous or anxious. The good news is there are some things that you can do now to prepare for surgery. 

By following these simple steps, you will increase your chances of a successful medical procedure! 


Eat a Healthy Diet

If you eat a lot of processed food and red meat, you may want to clean up your diet in the weeks leading up to your surgery. 

Aim to eat foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals, such as fruits and vegetables. These can decrease inflammation in your body too, which will prepare your body for what’s coming. 

Exercise Regularly

In addition to promoting overall health and wellbeing, exercise increases your chances of recovering quickly post-surgery. 

Even people who are relatively sedentary can start training their bodies before having an operation. It can be something as simple as getting more steps every day or stretching while watching TV. 

Quit Smoking or Drinking

If you smoke, drink, or take mood-altering substances, you may wish to kick these habits pre-surgery. They can lead to:

  • Anesthesia interactions
  • Poor sleep quality
  • Anxiety
  • Life-threatening complications

It would help if you tried to stop consuming these substances at least eight weeks before your scheduled surgery. 

Prepare Your Mind

Preparing for surgery isn’t just about your physical health. It is just as important to mentally prepare for surgery. 

You can do this by meditating, praying, or engaging in other activities that relieve stress and anxiety. Moreover, communicating with your doctor can help you to resolve any doubts that you have and eliminate some of your worries. 

See your Primary Care Doctor

Before your surgery, you should schedule an appointment with your primary care doctor. It’s essential to check in with them and let them know about your upcoming surgery. 

Doing so allows your doctor to make any necessary changes to your medications and give you medical clearance for surgery. This appointment is critical if you have diabetes since you need to have your blood sugar under control for optimal recovery. 

This appointment with your doctor also gives you the chance to ask about any vitamins and supplements you should stop taking before your operation. Some can increase the risk of bleeding or heart problems, and others can interact negatively with anesthesia. 

Ask Loved Ones for Help 

You may not be able to carry out your normal activities during your recovery. If you need help to perform simple tasks, such as getting out of bed, it is best to ask someone to stay with you for a few days or weeks. 

As soon as you have a surgery date, it would help if you started thinking about caregivers. 

Ask Your Doctor How to Prepare for Surgery

By following these tips, you’ll be the strongest version of yourself pre-surgery. As a result, you will likely recover as quickly as possible from your procedure. 

Since every surgery is different, it is best to ask your doctor how to prepare for surgery. He or she can give you specific instructions and resolve any of your doubts. 

Did this article help you? If so, be sure to check out more of our informative posts! 

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