4 Ways to Reduce Stress and Anxiety Before Surgery

Surgery, though necessary, can cause stress and anxiety in several people. We understand how scary going into a medical procedure can be and we are here to help. There are several tools and tips available to take control of your mental state leading into surgery. Since surgery already causes stress to your body, it is crucial to learn what you can do to reduce your stress and anxiety so you can go into surgery in the best possible shape to ensure a quick recovery. Today, we break down ways to manage your stress and anxiety in the days and weeks leading up to your surgery. 

Tip #1 Drink CF(Preop)® Before Surgery

One cause of stress and anxiety prior to surgery is being required to fast from midnight to surgery. On top of the stress of getting surgery, the additional burden of having to abstain from eating or drinking may worsen anxiety in several patients. Luckily, this old surgical doctrine that requires patients to fast from midnight to their surgery time is outdated. In the 1990s, evidence-based research suggested that it was not necessary to be NPO after midnight before surgery. Furthermore, there are detrimental effects caused by this period of prolonged fasting, including anxiety and stress. A systematic review that included 17 randomized control trials with a total of 1,445 patients showed that preoperative carb loading significantly improved patients comfort and reduced anxiety before surgery.

One way to reduce anxiety before surgery is to drink CF(Preop)®. Patients should drink the first bottle the night before their surgery and a second bottle 2 hours before their surgery is scheduled to begin. For additional drinking guidelines, watch this short video: CF(Preop)® Drinking Instructions

Tip #2 Educate Yourself About Your Surgery

Feeling anxious about surgery is normal, especially if you are not fully educated on what your surgery entails. In order to feel better about going into surgery, it is crucial to educate yourself. While the internet is a great way to get facts, speaking to your Surgeon or Nurse is an even better way to understand your surgery fully. The more you know about the medical procedure you are having, the better you will feel. Pay close attention to the reason you need surgery. If you focus on how much better you will feel after surgery, you are much more likely to have a positive outlook on your procedure. 

Tip #3 Prepare Your Body For Surgery

Ensuring you are in the best shape possible before surgery can be crucial in overall outcomes. There is a strong association between poor nutritional status and surgical outcomes. Several studies report that preoperative nutrition to correct poor nutritional status improves outcomes postoperatively. This may mean you need to gain or lose weight before your surgery. To understand the importance of perioperative nutrition and correcting nutritional status before surgery, consider surgery analogous to a marathon. Before a marathon, you train for an extended period to ensure you will finish the race with the fastest time possible. If you have any injuries or illness, you would likely postpone running the marathon until you were healed and fully recovered because if not, you will not run as fast and perhaps wouldn’t even be able to finish the race. In the big scheme of things, surgery is far more critical than running a marathon, so putting in the same “training” and making sure you are at your strongest before going into surgery will help you recover smoother and quicker. That is why at CF Nutrition, we strive to educate our clients on the importance of perioperative nutrition. 

Appropriate preoperative nutrition can reduce complications and short hospital stays. CF(Protein)® is a plant-based protein drink you can consume in the days and weeks leading up to your surgery to optimize your nutrition. It contains high-quality plant protein, omega three fatty acids, and anti-inflammatory ingredients that will enhance your immune system and optimize your overall health. It is a complete nutrition product to help build muscle and strength for a speedy recovery. Other ways to improve nutritional status can include enteral or parenteral nutrition. For obese patients, it is often required to lose excess weight before surgery. 

Tip#4 Seek Alternative Therapies For Anxiety

Surgery isn’t the only thing that causes stress in our lives. Hopefully, you know by now a few ways to manage stress. Before surgery, it is imperative to practice these daily.

 If you can’t seem to come up with ways to manage stress, here are a few ways we find help us manage stress:

  • Go for a Walk
  • Practice Yoga
  • Call a Friend
  • Spend Time With your Pet
  • Read a Book
  • Journal
  • Take a Bath

Now that you know how to manage stress and anxiety before surgery, put these tips and tricks into action to accelerate your recovery. Visit our website for more information on surgery.

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