Depression after a major surgery is a common occurrence. Your body has just been through a major physical trauma. Perhaps you are aware of the fact that even though the surgery is over you are still in danger of complications. More over, you are confined to your home and are unable to work for possibly weeks or months. All of these factors combined can very easily lead a person into a state of mental depression, large or small.
Depression can be a serious problem if an individual permits it to control the situation. Not only can it make day to day life harder to deal with, but it in this instance it can slow down the much needed healing process. Studies have shown that patients who have the personality to deal with the problems of surgery depression in a positive manner heal faster than patients with a negative attitude.
After surgery there are definitely many obstacles to overcome. There is usually pain involved, which requires medication to relieve the anxiety and help the patient sleep better. The pain must be dealt with, but at the same time, a side effect of most pain medications can be depression. This concludes after a major surgery the patient is dealing with two factors that can be causes of depression; pain and pain medications.
Other factors of post surgery that can lead to depression are the realization that you are going to have to make a very significant lifestyle change. There will be special diets that must be followed as well as exercise programs that must be adhered to. After spending most of you life in one particular manner, it is sometimes mentally frustrating to make a complete turn around in a short period of time.
Everyone has a different personality. Some people adapt very well to stressful situations and seem to have no trouble at all in overcoming them. To others post surgery is a very difficult time and they find themselves continually in a depressed state. If you are one of these individuals, here are a few things you may think about doing to make your days a little more positive.
1 – You Are Not Alone – Yes, I know just saying that does not make all the problems go away, but just think about it. You are not in a minority, you are in a majority. Almost all individuals who have a serious medical condition that requires a major, possibly life threatening operation, experience symptoms of surgery depression afterwords, or even before the surgery. This is a normal reaction. It would be a less normal reaction for an individual who had all these problems to experience no hint of mental anguish.
2 – Remember This Is Temporary – As the body heals, so will the mind. In no time at all your pain will start subsiding, and with it your need for the pain medication. These two factors alone will help you back to a more positive state of mind. You will know you are making a recovery.
3 – Try To Eat – The vast majority of patients who experience a major surgery lose their appetites for anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Even though you may be on a strict post surgery diet, you need to follow it to the fullest. Your body needs nourishment to heal not only its body, but its mind as well. Do not feel like you must keep your usual schedule of three meals a day. Instead, eat smaller meals, but as often as you like as long as you stay in your diets guidelines.
4 – Keep Busy – Of course do not do anything your physician has said is off limits, but there are things you can enjoy. If you liked a particular type of music before the operation, you will still enjoy it. The same thing goes for other things you did to pass the time away before the surgery. Do you like books or movies? Maybe just talking with your friends. Do anything other than laying around thinking about all the negative things that have happened to you lately.
5 – Find Support - Call a friend or family member whose company you really enjoy and invite them over for a visit. If you are up to it, maybe the two of you can take a short drive to get you out of the house awhile. If you can't, that is okay. Just some quality time spent with someone you know cares for you always helps. If you are familiar with computers, join a support group. With a little browsing, you will easily find a forum where you can interact with other individuals who are in your exact situation and are having to deal with the same day to day problems you are dealing with. It is a wonderful thing to get support from friends and family, but sometimes it may help to talk with someone who you know is in your same situation and having the same feelings you are having. Also, you may be surprised how many helpful recover tips you will get from people who have already been through what you are going through.
6 – Follow Instructions. - When you left the hospital you were given a list of things to do, and things not to do to help your recovery be as fast and successful as possible. Follow these instructions daily and do not deviate from them. As stated earlier, as your physical health gets better, you will also have a more positive mental attitude.
You may be thinking this article turned into some sort of self help for surgery depression relief, and I guess in a way it has, but this article has a point. If you would like to remember the main point of the article it is this; You are having a normal reaction to a temporary condition that will get better as your body heals. Just take it a day at a time and do the best you can.