PREHAB Home Preparation
Before total knee replacement surgery there are a few simple things you can do in your home to make it safer and more comfortable during recovery.
- Consider keeping a cordless phone near you or carry your cell phone in your pocket.
- Move furniture to keep a clear wide path to your kitchen, bathroom and bedroom.
- Remove throw rugs that may cause you to slip or trip. Tape down any loose edges of large area rugs that cannot be removed. Make sure extension cords are out of traffic areas or tape them down if needed.
- Wear rubber sole shoes to prevent slipping.
- Keep commonly used items in your home at waist level within easy reach. This will prevent you from bending over to reach items. Use a reacher to grab objects and avoid excessive bending at the knee.
- Make sure there is adequate lighting in the house. Add night lights in hallways, bedrooms, and bathrooms.
- It may be helpful to have temporary living space on the same floor if your bedroom/bathroom is located on the second floor of your home. Walking up/down stairs will be more difficult immediately following surgery and could increase your risk for falls.
- Arrange for someone to collect your mail and take care of pets or loved ones if necessary.
- Prepare frozen meals in advance to assist you with cooking.
- Stock up on groceries, toiletries, and any needed medications you might need.
- A shower chair or a tub bench will make bathing much easier. Do not take soak baths until your physician allows you to do so.
- An elevated toilet seat will be helpful with toilet transfers and with following post surgical precautions or guidelines.
- Assistive devices for dressing such as a reacher, extended shoe horn and / or sock aid may be necessary during your post operative recovery.
While it’s important to prepare your home before surgery, PREHAB should also include physical therapy. Physical therapists will work with patients to create an exercise program before surgery that can help improve performance and decrease recovery times after a total knee replacement. Talk to a PT near you and learn about the benefits of PREHAB before total joint replacements.