Prepare for joint surgery in mind and body.

While Welia Health’s robot-assisted joint surgery speeds recovery, there are also a number of tried-and-true steps you can take to prepare yourself physically and mentally for knee or hip surgery. Read on for our top tips on getting ready for joint replacement, and make sure to talk with your doctor about what strategies are right for you. 

Your mind makes a difference. 

When it comes to surgery and recovery, preparing yourself emotionally is as important as preparing yourself physically. Here are a few doctor-recommended strategies that can make a big difference:

  • Learn about the surgery. Get familiar with the procedure as well as risks and recovery timelines, talking about any concerns with your doctor.
  • Talk to people who’ve gone through joint replacement surgery, whether in person or through an online forum. Those who are further along in recovery can help you understand the process.
  • Practice mindfulness strategies. Working on a regular practice of focus, prayer, or meditation can help you manage anxiety about the upcoming surgery and deal with any pain afterwards. Check out this resource from SeniorsMatter on how to begin. 
  • Ask others for help. Having a “community” is one of the most important factors in a successful joint replacement. Talk to your family and friends about your recovery plan and ask for help when you need it.
  • Make a plan for controlling pain. Talk with your doctors and nurses about what non-drug and drug treatments are right for you. Common options include mental techniques and medication, but each person’s recovery is different. 

Getting your body ready. 

Before your surgery, work on your health and lifestyle habits. The healthier you are, the easier recovery will be. Your doctor may recommend the following common measures: 

  • Exercise key muscles to strengthen areas like the thighs and even the upper body (as these muscles will help support you post-surgery). A physical therapist will work with you before your surgery to help you get comfortable with a series of recommended exercises you’ll use in recovery. To speak with a physical therapist in our rehabilitation services department, call 320.225.3356.
  • Eat a nutritious diet. Healthy foods with plenty of vitamins and nutrients can help your body recover more quickly. Welia Health’s dietitians recommend using Nutrition.gov for nutrition tips, recipes, and more
  • Quit or cut back on smoking, as it can affect blood circulation and slow healing. To discuss how to quit with our Tobacco Cessation specialist Aaron Korte, call 320.225.3356.
  • Lose a few pounds. Your doctor may advise you to reduce pressure on the new joint. Our registered dietitians can help—to make an appointment, call 320.679.1313

By preparing mentally and physically, you help yourself recover quickly and fully. Talk to your doctor about what strategies are right for you. And know you’re not alone: our community inside and outside of Welia Health is here to make sure you have everything you need.

Questions about hip or knee replacement? Talk with your primary care provider about joint replacement surgery. Your provider will be able to refer you to Dr. Chad Holien at Welia Health, our surgeon in charge of orthopedic procedures using the Stryker Mako robot-assisted technology. Call 320.679.1313 to schedule.