Hip Replacement Surgery Success!

Starts here. Starts now.

Hip replacement surgery workout routines come in all shapes and sizes but there are a few basics and a few secrets for the transition home. A total hip can restore a tremendous amount of quality to one's life if your rehab workout routine is correctly taught and ambitiously pursued.

Sometimes even the basic teaching behind a few exercises can make or break the success of your total hip. Not all teaching is created equal and sometimes the same home exercise program is given to everyone without paying close attention to each one's individual ability. Protocol's are needed but every patient has individual weaknesses prior to their surgery and every patient will have individual weaknesses and difficulty's after surgery.

So, you're home now. What's next? Depending on your individual circumstance, you may or may not have had a short term rehab stay. You may have come straight home from the hospital. At any rate, you're home. We know you are excited to have a new lease on life again but first things first for your hip replacement success!

We want you to get back to life! Grand kids, golf, driving, farming, dancing and fishing! We hope that is what you want too! Below are the top 8 secrets for making the transition between hospital and home simple and relaxing and your hip replacement workout routines a success.

welcome home.

Here is where the hard work begins. Why do I say hard?

Many feel that just being home is enough to get them back in the swing of things. While you do need to pamper yourself a tiny bit and use good judgment, don't over do it or under-do it - you still may have a tough road ahead of you.

These tips are for your success. Work with your doctor and physical therapist to make the best of rehab!

Tip #1
Rest your first day home. But walk every hour. Other than that, put your workout routine aside and just rest, relax, breath, get comfortable. It's a workout just getting home! Rest and good, quality sleep will help you towards your goals more than anything else! If that means putting a pillow under your knees to get comfortable, then do it. We know that hip can be sore! Sleep is vital.

Tip #2
Drink lots of water. Not coffee, not soda, not tea or juice. Water. Drink every hour (unless you are on a fluid restricted diet). Anesthesia can hang around in your body for a long time. The more adipose or fat tissue you possess, the longer it can remain in your body. Water helps to flush it out. Water also helps to regulate you. With hip replacement surgery comes pain medicine and it is notorious for saving you toilet paper due to constipation--but this at your expense! Water will move you towards the bathroom for relief. Adding fresh lemon juice to your water will act to cleanse internally and act as a diuretic to any excess water in your body.

Tip #3
Use ice for pain management. Pain pills can stop you up, are hard on your liver and affect your sleep (and sleep is vital, remember?). Take them if you need to, but utilize ice packs for natural pain relief. A bag of frozen peas or corn makes for a good pliable ice pack easily molded to those tricky spots. If ice makes your hip replacement pain worse, then try heat, but ice is the name of the game at this point.

Tip #4
Workout routine on day two. Better known as your Home Exercise Program. In addition to this you should walk every hour with your walker. 5 feet or 500 feet--it makes no difference, just walk. If you have balance issues make sure someone is close by to walk with you. Safety is always first. And if you have weight bearing restrictions such as partial weight bearing or toe touch weight bearing... those restrictions must be followed. The glue has to dry you know!

Tip #5
Quality vs. quantity. Two sets of 10 will not get you very far if you are doing 8 of those 10 wrong or compensating with other muscles. You must work towards quality and the quantity will come. No good coach allows a student to continue in bad form hoping that he will get it right some day. The same is true for your hip replacement success. If quality means only 2 or 3 of an exercise, then that is where you are at. It will get better.

Tip #6
No bending past 90 degrees (depending on the type of hip surgery you had). You should be saying this in your sleep by now. It's crucial to remember this and your other hip replacement surgery precautions. If you have a question, place a box or book on your upper thigh where it meets your trunk (where your leg bends). You may bend forward until your trunk touches the book. And, you may lift your leg till the book touches your trunk. So, if you are standing and need to pick something up off the floor, remember the book test, kicking your hip replacement leg back now increases that angle at the hip and gives you the freedom to bend toward your imaginary book, accomplishing your task without violating your precautions. Be cautiously creative to find ways to accomplish your tasks but always do the book test. No book? Pull your drivers license or credit card out. Anything with a 90 degree angle will work.

Tip #7
Straight leg raise (SLR) means just that--straight. Due to leverage and physics and stuff, the SLR can be the hardest part of your workout routine. This often turns into the 'bent leg lift' with barely enough strength to get through 3 or 4. The remedy? If no one can assist you so you can do this exercise pain free, then don't - yet. Stick with your short and long arc quad exercises. When you are ready to try again (and do so every day)do instead my infamous "Lock and Lift." Lock your knee down, hold it good and locked, now lift. Only an inch--that is fine, but no more than about 6 inches. Quality counts... when the 'lock' no longer holds stop.

Tip #8
You may have come home with weight bearing precautions for your total hip replacement. FOLLOW THESE! However, remember that a standard walker with wheels on the front will allow for a more normalized walking pattern than a walker without wheels. Your hip is a weight bearing joint and plays a big part in your walking. If your doctor and/or physical therapist recommends wheels for your walker, it's a good thing! Your hip replacement will learn while it's "young" how to walk correctly.

Stay committed to your rehab... take one day at a time. Know that you'll have good days and bad days - and if you choose to sit it out or dance... I hope you choose to dance!

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