Reducing Anxiety

"Our results strongly suggest that counseling of patients is urgently required to promote positive emotions and to improve outcomes." (1)

"Strongly suggest"... "Urgently require"...

That's not subtle language, particularly for a scientific study. This was the conclusion researchers came to after looking at how negative emotions impact post-surgical outcomes. The strong conclusion was that it was an urgent need to change patients negative emotions because it hurt their recovery. 
Your thoughts are so powerful.
The researchers from 
Laiwu People’s Hospital, in Laiwu, China decided to look at whether phycological factors influenced the recovery of total joint patients.

 

The details:

Researchers from Laiwu People’s Hospital, in Laiwu, China started with 135 eligible total joint patients and asked them to fill out a survey. 119 patients completed the extensive survey. The data collected from these patients gave the researchers a mountain of data to correlate. 
Their findings:

1) Reduced strength from patients with negative attitudes.
That is an amazing finding. The way you think about your surgery has dramatic impacts on your body. 

This sounds similar to the study we talk about HERE that was done on pinky strength. This study showed just thinking about exercise increased pinky strength! 
Your mind is powerful and it can change your entire experience!

2) Health-Related Quality of Life increased with attitude. 
After 6 months the health-related quality of life score was in lockstep with positive emotions. Likewise, the more negative one's outlook, the more pain, and poorer outcome. 

Prepare well, Heal well. 

 

This study builds on other studies which show the same power connection between mind and body. 

Depression and anxiety are known issue within healthcare. Depression and anxiety have been linked to the perception of more pain, increased complications, slower recovery, & poor outcomes. 

"Depression or anxiety was a predictor of increased complications after TJA"

The positive and negative connection between your mind and body is well established in the scientific literature but let's talk about something we all know.

When was the last time you had to speak publicly? Odds are you didn't want to do it. You did it but not without your body letting you know you were nervous.
Your heart sped up, your hands got sweaty, & your stomach was in knots. All of this before you even said one word. Nothing happened but your body responded to what you were thinking in your head.
Your mind controlled your body based on your belief about public speaking. 

Dealing with high levels of stress is something we all have to deal with. For many people, exercise is how they deal with stress. 
After a total joint surgery, exercise may not be as emotionally therapeutic. At first, you may find it challenging and/or frustrating. 
Below is a list of different tools you can use to help manage stress post surgery. 
Personally, I use all of these techniques and find them incredibly helpful. 

 

EFT

Emotional Freedom Technique is like acupuncture for your mind. EFT has been proven effective at many things including reducing stress and depression. It sounds crazy that physically tapping on your body would have such a profound impact on your mind but it does. 

 

 

Prayer


Your spiritual health is instrumental in your recovery. For many people that means praying to God. For others, God is a loaded word that brings with it more history than peace. In either case, it is important to identify the source that resonates in all of us and align ourselves with the beauty in our humanity. 

 

Mediation

To quote Ellen, "It feels good. Kinda like when you have to shut your computer down, just sometimes when it goes crazy, you just shut it down and when you turn it on, it's okay again. That's what meditation is to me."
Mediation is about turning down the volume on all of the noise in our life and it has profound positive impacts on your surgical outcome.  

 

Guided Imagery 

High performing Athletes use this technique all of the time to strength their mind and body connection for better results. You can use it too, to help you recover.