Your senior might not be looking forward to surgery, but there are some things that you can do in advance that can help make that recovery period easier on everyone.
Assess What She Needs After Surgery
Talk with your elderly family member’s surgeon and anyone else who is instrumental to her care about what to expect after your senior has surgery. Your elderly family member’s surgical team may even have a checklist that you can follow to make things even easier. This can help you ensure that you’ve got as many ducks in a row as possible.
Get Some Freezer Meals Ready
One of the biggest things that you can do before your senior goes in for surgery is to cook a few freezer meals. Friends and family members may also bring over some food while your elderly family member is recovering, but having some backup meals in the freezer can free up your brain on those nights when you just don’t have the energy to cook.
Clear out Pathways
Depending on the type of surgery your senior is having, she may find it difficult to walk or to maintain her balance. Check out the area she’ll be staying in while she recovers. If there are any obstacles or possible issues that might create a tripping hazard, make sure you clear them out before surgery. Consider installing hand rails, too, if they can offer a bit more stability for your aging family member.
Tackle Laundry and Other Practical Matters Beforehand
Some of the other practical matters, like laundry and regular prescription pickups, can get a little lost when you’re preparing to help your senior recover from surgery. Make a list of the practical issues you need to get a handle on and start tackling those items one by one. If there’s something that you won’t have time or energy to handle yourself, you don’t have to.
Get Help for What You Can’t Personally Handle Yourself
One of the best lessons that you can learn as a caregiver is how to delegate the tasks you can’t complete yourself to people you trust to handle them for you. This is where experienced senior care providers can make a tremendous difference for you and for your elderly family member. They can handle everything from respite care for you to mobility assistance for your senior family member as she recovers.
The more that you can plan for before your elderly family member has surgery, the better. But don’t beat yourself up if you don’t think of everything. Make plans for whatever you can make plans for and do your best to tackle problems as they crop up.