How Physical Therapy Exercises Can Help You Recover Faster from Surgery

You’ve had the surgery. You’ve made it through the first few days post-op. Now what?

Recovery after surgery is different for everyone. But one thing is certain across the board – physical therapy is a great tool to use when recovering from surgery. 

Keep reading to learn how physical therapy exercises can speed up your recovery.

Movement is Critical to Recovery

After surgery, your doctor will likely prescribe some time for you to rest and heal. But when that time has passed, it’s best to get back on your feet and get moving as soon as possible. Lack of movement during the post-surgical phase can lead to a loss of muscle mass, decreases in heart and lung capacity, and an increased risk of complications. 

Blood contains nutrients and brings fresh oxygen to the tissues. Increasing blood flow through a supervised physical therapy program helps keep your heart, lungs, and muscles in better shape. Exercise helps the actual surgical site heal quicker by delivering vital nutrients to the tissues. 

Another important aspect of recovery is mental health. The inability to move following surgery can have a big impact on your emotions and can lead to further issues like depression and insomnia. Safe exercises, done under the care of a physical therapist, release endorphins that make you feel better and help you deal with the stress of surgery. 

Strengthen, Stretch, and Balance

Strength training is a great way to bring more blood and oxygen to the tissues around the surgical site. The physical therapist will often utilize exercise machines and other tools, like crutches and braces, to ensure you’re properly supported while you build strength. And strengthening the core muscles – the muscles of the abdomen and back – provides better stability and reduces the risk of future injuries. 

Targeted stretching exercises help relieve pain from tense muscles and also help with blood flow. Stretching increases range of motion in your joints which improves overall mobility. It’s important to follow the therapist’s guidelines when stretching to ensure you don’t overextend or tear the surgical site. 

A physical therapist can also help improve balance. We might not realize it, but balance is so important for keeping us safe and injury-free after surgery. Falls are one of the top causes of injury in seniors. By doing balance exercises in both the seated and standing position, you can improve strength and flexibility, which can help prevent falls. 

Pain Management

If you’re experiencing pain around the surgery site, physical therapy may be able to help. Therapists provide other treatment options including ultrasound and massage therapy. These treatments, combined with strength training and stretching, can provide physical pain relief to those areas. 

Your body produces endorphins when you exercise and those endorphins may also help reduce pain. They work similarly to the way many powerful pain medications work to block pain signals from the body. The best way to get your endorphins up after surgery is to increase activity levels and physical therapy is the best way to do that safely. 

Who Can Benefit Physical Therapy Exercises After Surgery?

Are you wondering if you’d be a good candidate for physical therapy exercises after surgery? Talk to your doctor about physical therapy any time you have surgery. 

It’s a great option if you’ve had any kind of knee, hip, or shoulder surgery, including replacements. Physical therapy can also be helpful for back surgery or surgery on your hands or feet – some of the most difficult surgeries to recover from. 
At St. William’s, we have a brand-new, state-of-the-art physical therapy treatment room. We can provide you the care you need while you’re recovering from surgery. Visit our website today to learn more about our therapy options!

VISITATION MODIFICATION CHANGES BEGINNING AUGUST 31, 2020

Dear St. William’s Living Center and McCornell Court Resident, Friends, and Family,

We are very excited to share news that we will soon be able to resume visitation in our setting and warmly welcome visitors back in our buildings! After carefully developing a safe and comprehensive reopening plan, we expect in-door visits to resume on August 31, 2020.

As of today, we have not had any positive cases of COVID-19 in any staff or residents.  We developed a testing plan that includes ongoing surveillance testing of direct care staff through an agreement with the Mayo Clinic.  We are taking an aggressive approach to test residents and staff with symptoms by utilizing rapid testing available through Sanford Clinic in Parkers Prairie. 

INDOOR VISITS MUST BE SCHEDULED IN ADVANCE

Guests may schedule an indoor visit online at https://stwilliamslivingcenter.simplybook.me/ or by calling the business office at 218-338-4671 during business hours Monday – Friday 8am to 4:30pm.

VISITORS MUST BE SCREEND PRIOR TO ENTRY

All visitors entering the facility will be actively screened for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 at a screening station prior to the visitor walking through the facility.  All visitors to the nursing home should enter door A to be screened.  All assisted living visitors should enter door E to be screened.  Do not come for an indoor visit if you are ill or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19.  

VISITATION RULES MAY CHANGE

Visitation rules may change for several reason’s including if a resident or staff person tests positive for COVID-19, if the case activity level in the community increases above an incidence rate of 10:10,000 in Douglas or Otter Tail county, or if the facility does not have adequate staffing or PPE

See below for a visitation guide to explain the process for Level 2 visitation at McCornell Court and St. William’s Living Center.  Please know we continue to provide outdoor visits, window visits, and visits through technology and encourage you to take advantage of these opportunities.  If you have any questions, please give us a call at 218-338-4671. 

Sincerely,

Tim Kelly, Administrator