If you’ve been in the hospital for an illness or a planned surgery, you know that preparing the house properly for your return can greatly impact your healing and recovery.
The following tips, courtesy of Medline Plus, encourage safety and independence at home:
Make it easy for yourself
Make sure everything you need is easy to get to and on the same floor where you will spend most of your time. If you need to use the stairs, limit using them to once a day, if possible.
*Set up your bed on the first floor (or the entry floor) if you can. You may not need a hospital bed. But your mattress should be firm.
*Have a bathroom or a portable commode on the same floor where you will spend most of your day.
*Stock up on canned or frozen food, toilet paper, shampoo, and other personal items.
*Either buy or make single meals that can be frozen and reheated.
*Make sure you can reach everything you need without getting on your tiptoes or bending down.
*Put food and other supplies in a cupboard that is between your waist and shoulder level.
*Place glasses, silverware, and other items you use often on the kitchen counter.
*Make sure you can get to your phone. A cell phone or wireless phone can be helpful.
Place a chair with a firm back in the kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, and other rooms you will use. This way, you can sit when you do your daily tasks.
If you will be using a walker, attach a sturdy bag or a small basket to hold your phone, a notepad, a pen, and other things you will need to have close by. You can also wear fanny pack.
Get some help
You may need help with bathing, using the toilet, cooking, running errands, shopping, going to the doctor, and exercising.
If you do not have someone to help you at home for the first 1 or 2 weeks after surgery, ask your doctor or nurse about having a trained caregiver come to your home to help you. This person can also check the safety of your home and help you with your daily activities.
Some items that may be helpful include:
*Shower sponge with a long handle
*Shoehorn with a long handle
*Cane, crutches, or a walker Read more