Knee and hip replacement surgeries are becoming more common every day. The procedures themselves are even getting more streamlined and better every year. Should you have knee or hip replacement surgery, your doctor will insist you do physical rehabilitation afterward. A regular physical therapy program is a key part of recovery from these surgeries. Building up strength in the muscles around your new joint, will help you get back to your normal activities.
Benefits of Rehab
- Restore normal movement in your joint
- Build up strength in the joint and surrounding muscles
- Ease pain and swelling
- Continuing your normal activities
- Help with circulation, particularly right after surgery, so you don't have problems with blood clots
Rehab Right After Your Operation
If you've just had surgery, your doctor will have you start moving your joint very soon. If you're not in too much pain, you may actually start the day of the operation. At first you'll sit up on the edge of the bed, and maybe stand and walk a few steps with some help.
During your hospital stay, you'll work with a physical therapist on some simple exercises. For instance, they may ask you to pump your ankles or tense and relax your thighs. They will also have you get up and walk around with the help of crutches or a walker.
Rehab Once You Get Home
Your doctor will show you a list of companies that offer physical therapy, like Freudenthal. Our physical therapists come to your home for regular visits and, more often than not, will give you exercises to work on between sessions that help you improve your range of motion in the new joint.
You'll gradually add more strengthening exercises as you build up your endurance. You should exercise 20-30 minutes, two or three times every day – or as much as your doctor suggests. Walking several times a day may also help. Start with only 5 minutes, and work your way up to 20-30 minutes, several times a day. Use a cane if you need it.
Whether you work with our amazing therapists at Freudenthal or on your own, stay as active as possible for your overall health. Now that you have a new joint, you need to keep it in good shape!