The results of any type of surgery can be undone if you don’t take care of yourself in the proper ways. If you follow your spine surgeon’s recommendations and your physical therapist’s protocol of continued exercises and stretches, your spinal fusion results should actually improve over the years.
Generally, the more closely you follow your preparation recommendations and your recovery plan, the faster your back will heal. Let’s talk about the dos and don’ts of spinal fusion surgery, how to keep your back strong and healthy, and where you can go in Rochester Hills and the Southeast Michigan area for outstanding spine care.
Dos and Don’ts After Having Spinal Fusion Surgery
Don’t get too comfortable sitting down
Spending too much time sitting down or lying down will negatively impact your recovery after back surgery because the area can become stiff if you’re too sedentary. Be sure to perform your physical therapist’s recommended exercises and stretches on a regular basis. If they are too cumbersome, and you are finding yourself not doing the exercises (this is called “adherence” in medical speak, adhering to a prescribed protocol), talk to your physical therapist about exercises that are more interesting for you.
Do your prehab
Your spine surgeon may recommend that you have prehab before the surgery, which means physical therapy that is designed to help you get your body physically ready for the surgery. This usually means losing weight and/or getting your muscles stronger. This will also allow you to recover more quickly because your body will be stronger and healthier.
Don’t bend, lift, or twist too much while your back is healing.
Lifting items that weigh more than 10 pounds is not advisable, and bending from the waist is also not advisable. Instead of bending, your physical therapist may show you how to squat if you are trying to pick up something from the floor.
If squatting is not an option, you can use a mechanical reacher to lessen your movement. Also, when trying to move your hips from one direction to another, you will be shown how to move your whole body instead of twisting your hips.
Do continue performing your recommended rehab exercises
Rehabilitation is particularly important when it comes to recovering after spinal fusion surgery. Your physical therapist will teach you exercises that will strengthen your back muscles, which will support your healing spine. The therapist will also explain movements that should be avoided and alternative movements, such as when lifting, twisting, sitting, and even sleeping.
Spine Surgeon in Greater Southeast Michigan
If you have severe or debilitating back pain or neck pain, have an evaluation by a caring and experienced spine specialist. Here at Ahlgren Spine, our own Dr. Bradley Ahlgren and his medical team will conduct a thorough yet efficient analysis of your back pain, determine the options you have, and administer your treatment of choice.
If you decide to have spinal fusion surgery to get rid of your back pain once and for all, we can perform that and be here for you during and after the entire process while your back heals. Our goal is for you to have a pain-free back and neck.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ahlgren, contact us today at (248) 215-8080 or fill out our easy-to-use appointment request form online now. We look forward to helping you alleviate the pain in your spine!