Is Your Home Safe for Your Return After a Surgery?

Posted on: September 6th, 2018 by | No Comments

If you’re headed for surgery, you’re likely to be given an extensive list for preoperative preparation that lets you know how to get ready, and what to expect during surgery. Upon discharge, you’ll probably be given another sheaf of papers, but all too often the postoperative instructions aren’t nearly as detailed. That can add a layer of stress to what is too often already a painful and challenging time. NewAldaya Lifescapes has helped many individuals in the Cedar Falls area with their post-surgical recovery, and today we’re sharing some of that knowledge with you.

When to Prepare for Recovery

The steps laid out below should be done well before your surgery date. Some of your preparations may require the help of a friend or family member, and you’ll also need to “build in” a bit of extra time when it comes to lining up assistance, buying or ordering supplies, and testing your new setup.

How to Prepare for Recovery

There are several things you’ll need to do to make your home safer to protect yourself during your recovery period.

Sleeping Area

If your bedroom is upstairs, use a downstairs guest bedroom or rent a hospital bed for a common area. You may not be able to use the stairs for some time after your surgery.


Stock up on the essentials, making sure you store them within easy reach; you should not have to bend or reach too far to get what you need. This may mean putting things in canisters on the counters, moving items around in the fridge, and doing some rearranging in your pantry.


Bathrooms can have odd layouts and slippery surfaces that make in-home recovery perilous. If you know you’ll have a walker, crutches, or a wheelchair during your recovery period, get them ahead of time and test them in your home. If you have difficulty with the bath, shower, or toilet during this test period, installing bars can help with stability, and a waterproof stool or shower chair can help with hygiene and safety.

Living Room

You’re not going to be quite as mobile during the recovery period, so it’s a good idea to have at least one room where you can settle in. The essentials — snacks, remotes, glasses, reading materials, and medications — should all be within easy reach.


If you have superfluous furniture, move it to a part of the house or condo that’s less-used. If you have area rugs, take them up so you don’t trip over them. Pay close attention to obstructions, cords, and the like. And if you have pets, consider either boarding them with a friend or getting help with them; they want to be close to you as you recover, but you don’t want to hurt them (or yourself) by tripping over them.

Getting Help

These suggestions merely scratch the surface, and even at that they probably seem intimidating. It’s a lot to do, after all. To that end, the outpatient therapy and social work teams at NewAldaya Lifescapes can assist with your return home. Not only will we evaluate your home for a safe return, we’ll also help you select home equipment and adaptive devices that make your home more livable during — and past — your recovery. We can also assist with social services like Meals on Wheels, home exercise programs, life alert products, and arrangements for in-home health visits.

The Assisted Living/Respite Care Alternative

The ideas and services listed above are, of course, in addition to a range of skilled therapy services we offer at our Cedar Falls campus. For many seniors, assisted living isn’t just a viable alternative; it’s the best option available.

If you realize that you (or your loved one) will be facing a long and difficult recovery, or that your local support system is either stretched thin or nonexistent, our Cedar Falls assisted living program could be the answer. You’ll receive a wide range of cutting-edge care that includes medication management and support, nutritional assistance, wound healing, rehab services, lab draws, and onsite X-rays. Help is always close at hand!

If surgery is in your future, you shouldn’t face the challenges of recovery alone. And you don’t have to. NewAldaya Lifescapes will ensure the road to recovery is a smooth one. Contact us today for information on qualifications, pre-requisites, and program details.