How to Relieve Stress Before and After Surgery

Ask questions.

Talk with your healthcare providers about your surgery. Surgery can commonly cause anxiety, feelings of being overwhelmed, and nervousness. These feelings can make it difficult to understand, remember, and retain important information. Discuss any fears. Write questions down before you come to your pre op teaching appointment. Take notes. If you think of a new question after you leave the physician’s office, call the office and talk to the nurses.

Get Help Around the House.

Ask family and friends to take care of your yard or your pets. Ask someone to bring meals while you recover. Most people will gladly help if you can give them a specific task.

Prepare your body for surgery.

Get plenty of rest. Eat healthy meals. Exercise to the extent it is currently approved and possible for you to do.

Pack a bag

Pack your bag the day before you come to the hospital. Please remember not to take valuables (rings, jewelry, cash, etc). Arrange for someone to take you to the hospital and to bring you home. Persons discharged from the hospital are not permitted to drive themselves home.
Bring personal grooming items like a comb or brush, slippers, toothbrush, mouthwash, etc. If you forget, the hospital does have some of theses items on hand.
If you have a favorite magazine or book, bring those.
Talk with children honestly, but in terms they will understand. Children need to be reassured that the doctors and nurses are going to do everything they can to make surgery successful.
Arrange to have children come to the hospital for a visit when you feel up to it.


Talk with your close family and friends about your wishes for visitation. Some patients feel overwhelmed when many people come to visit the first night. A friendly conversation beforehand can help everyone feel better.

Make a Plan

Have your post operative plan in place this may help calm feelings simply because you mark some things off your to do list. Knowing what is coming next will help you have someone lined up to help attend to chores, pick up prescriptions, get around until you are cleared to drive, entertainment lined up to avoid boredom

Alternative Therapies For Anxiety

Relaxation techniques and breathing exercises.
Meditation 101
Mindfulness Solutions. Everyday practices for Everyday Problems
A simple fast way to reduce stress.
The benefits of journaling for stress management.

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