You’re preparing for foot surgery, perhaps a bunion or hammertoe operation or surgery for an ankle fracture.
Our board-certified podiatrists and podiatric foot and ankle surgeons with Optima Foot and Ankle in Bend, Oregon, offer the most advanced treatments and surgical techniques available today for foot and ankle problems.
If you’ve never had foot surgery, it’s hard to imagine not being able to walk around your house easily or run to the store for a missing item. However, that’s exactly your situation for a few weeks after your operation.
Taking time to prepare your home for a smooth, stress-free recovery is important. Here are seven useful tips to help you get the job done right.
Declutter: Form a clear path through your house
Before your surgery, examine your home for potential tripping hazards. Remove loose area rugs and clear a path wide enough for you to make your way on crutches or a scooter.
Make sure you have an open path between your main recovery space and your bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, front door, and any other area you may need to access in the first few weeks.
Purchase and arrange your medical supplies
Expect your doctor to prescribe an antibiotic after the surgery. Pick it up a few days before your operation along with any other medical supplies you’ll need.
That includes over-the-counter or prescription pain relievers, reusable ice packs to calm inflammation and swelling, and a waterproof bag and tape or cast cover to keep the area completely dry when you bathe. You may want to get a shower chair to sit in while you bathe.
Arrange a comfortable spot to rest during the day
Foot surgery requires you to elevate your leg during the day for a few weeks after the operation.
Arrange a place in your home where you have everything you need within reach. Whether you’re in a recliner, a chair, or your bed, you’ll need extra pillows to keep your foot at a level above your heart.
Have a table large enough beside you to keep a drink, your phone and its charger, glasses, TV remote, books or magazines and anything else you use often. Keep a bedside tray ready for meals.
No matter how independent you are, when you have foot surgery, it’s important to ask for help. If you live alone, reach out to one or two dependable family members and friends to ensure you have reliable assistance as you recover.
You’ll need someone to drive you to your first doctor appointments and help with unavoidable errands or chores.
Plan your meals
Stock your freezer with frozen foods and consider preparing healthy meals in advance and freezing them. Have snacks and drinks in an easily accessible place. Take-out is always an option.
If you normally buy groceries once a week, double up on your usual provisions so you have enough food to get through an initial two-week recovery period.
Organize the bathroom
Are your soap, toothbrush, floss, and mouthwash within easy reach on the counter? If you want to use makeup during your recovery, place all of it in a bag and leave it out. Don’t try to lean your crutches on the counter and bend down to get something underneath it. That may cause a fall.
Sponge baths only go so far. Gather all of the supplies you need to protect your foot during bathing or showering, and get them ready in advance of surgery. Keep several plastic bags on hand as well as dressing tape, so you’re ready to shower or bathe whenever you need. Put your shower chair in place.
Use a nightlight
Put a nightlight in the room where you’re sleeping as well as in the bathroom. You don’t want to fall and further injure yourself.
Call or book an appointment online with Optima Foot and Ankle for expert care. We help you get back on your feet safely.