A knee replacement may sound like something that will drastically impact your way of life. It sounds like a lot of pain, a limitation, almost a sentence — but this is not nearly the case. In most cases, people who went through a knee replacement continued to live a full and rewarding life. Here are five tips that will help you get through the process.
While it won’t be possible to go swimming immediately after a knee replacement, it will be an option after several weeks. Most if not all knee replacement orthopedic surgeons suggest using pool exercise as an easy way to get the knee back into shape after a surgery. The water has low-impact on the joints and will allow seniors to improve their range of motion without putting added stress on the artificial knee. You can also do things like aqua jogging or water aerobics.
Standing up may prove difficult for a while after the surgery. It will be hard for seniors to get up and move, much less exercise. Doing chair activities is a great way to improve strength and get some exercise in without putting too much stress on the knee. People can start by working out their arms and doing simple leg lifts to start slow and give themselves time to work up to harder activities. This will also make it easier to go about on your daily activities, which often involve sitting down and getting up.
Don’t go dancing at first! It will take some time after a replacement before seniors can take up dancing, but once they can, it will present a great way to stay active and keep the legs and body strong. Not only that, but dancing keeps the brain strong as well. Mental decline is inevitable as people age, but through dancing and other forms of exercise older adults can help to slow this decline and keep their minds working for as long as possible. Dancing works to improve balance as well, which is incredibly important for those who already experience poor balance due to a replaced knee.
It is recommended to start getting up and walking immediately after surgery recovery. Within the first couple of days after the replacement, a walking device may be utilized. After that, surgeons recommend walking as much as tolerated without any assistance. Once home, seniors can start out by simply walking around their home or yard. Soon after, a walk around the neighborhood may be suitable. Over time, a full walk around the park enjoying the scenery — it’s just a matter of building up a tolerance for the activity again. Walking through nature also helps lessen symptoms of depression, which many people may experience after a surgery or other medical troubles. All-in-all a walk is very beneficial and we should all be doing it as much as it’s decently possible.
There are plenty of senior-friendly workout classes to join. After you’re well on the road to recovery from your surgery, you might want to try out a few class options to see which one you like best. A water aerobics class could be a great start thanks to the low impact of the water on the joints.
A knee replacement doesn’t have to put people on the sidelines of their lives. Even with an artificial knee in place, seniors can still continue to live full lives doing the things they enjoy. While they may have to start out with some simple exercises and activities, eventually they can get back to a mostly normal routine and exercise plan doing whatever they enjoy. Life can still be fun, and it can definitely be rewarding.