If you have a total knee replacement scheduled soon, then your orthopedic surgeon will likely inform you about the rehabilitation you will need after the procedure is over. Much of the rehab will focus on encouraging a smooth healing process and rebuilding strength. And, you do want to minimize your discomfort during the process. So, keep reading to learn how to do this.
Start With Early Exercises
It may sound painful to start moving and exercising within the first 24 to 48 after your surgical procedure. However, the movement will encourage good blood flow to the surgical area which means reduced inflammation and faster healing. In some cases, you can start small exercises right in the recovery room, as long as your physician agrees to this. You want to tighten the muscles in your thigh and try to straighten your knee.
Also, you can typically start some leg raises within a short period of time where your leg is elevated an inch or two off the ground. Moving your foot up and down in a pumping motion is also a good exercise, and this is especially helpful when it comes to reducing the risks of deep blood clots forming in the veins of your legs.
Once you are able to master the smaller movements without a great deal of fatigue, you can move on to knee bends. All exercises should be completed in a series of 10 and your physician or rehab specialist will inform you of the number of sets that are advisable and in what time frame.
Walk As Much As Possible
Walking is extremely important when it comes to your recovery for a variety of reasons. It helps to minimize the amount of fluid that builds up in your body, it helps to minimize muscle wasting, and it helps to move blood through the body so all of your tissues get the oxygen they need.
You will be prompted to walk within the first 24 hours after surgery. To begin you will use either crutches or a walker and you will be asked to place moderate or light pressure on the surgically treated leg.
As you walk, you want to do so in a slow manner while placing even weight on both sides of your body. Walking can be a bit painful, but remember that pain will often be more severe if you do not walk. Start off with short trips and then work with your rehab specialist to plan longer and longer walks. Set goals for yourself to make it easier on yourself and to encourage a positive attitude about the rehabilitation.
To learn more, reach out to local orthopedic rehab services.