Pain is inevitable after most surgeries and the more extensive the surgery, the more severe and long-lasting the pain. Together with your doctor, you must come up with a plan for managing your pain after surgery, especially if you are in recovery.
If you are facing the prospect of an upcoming surgery, start thinking ahead of time about your pain management plan, as many of the painkillers used to treat post-surgery pain put you at risk of developing an addiction. Knowing that you have the potential to become addicted is powerful information and you should use it wisely. Below are some tools and strategies to help you maintain your recovery from alcohol or substances after a surgery:
Communicate with your physician and surgeon
It is important that you address all medical history, medication, pain management addiction history and surgery recovery issues with your physician and surgeon. That way going into the surgery your entire medical team is on the same page and can help support you as you heal from the surgery.
Actively participate in your recovery program
This may be a time in your life where you need to reach out to receive additional support from your network. Find groups such as AA, and enlist the support of family, spouse and/or friends in your pain management plan and surgical recovery. If you see an outpatient provider on a regular basis, continue to keep those appointments.
Ensure Correct Dosing of Medication After Surgery
Enlist the help of a partner, friend or family member to help you stick to the correct dosing schedule. They can actually administer you the medication or just help to hold you accountable.
Monitor pain and medications with physician after surgery
Keep all of your post-operative appointments. You can use these appointments to discuss your pain level and determine when the best time is to begin tapering off of your medications..
Begin to schedule normal activities
As your health allows, return to work, school or volunteer commitments. The sooner you start back to your normal life the sooner you will begin to feel like your normal self.
Appropriate pain management is integral to recovery from surgery as well as continued recovery from alcohol and chemical addictions. By talking with your doctor and employing these strategies you can preserve your recovery through a surgery.
Please consult your doctor prior to following any advice contained in this article.