How to Relieve Stress Before and After Surgery

Surgery can be a very stressful experience. Not just for the person being operated on, but the whole family. And while we can't take away all the anxiety, here are some tips that might help you and your family feel more prepared and confident.

  • Ask questions. Talk with your physician about your surgery. Take notes. If you think of new questions after you leave your physician's office, call the office and talk to one of the nurses.
  • 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.
  • 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 our hospital are not permitted to drive themselves home.
  • Bring personal grooming items like a comb or brush, slippers, toothbrush, mouthwash, razor, etc. If you forget, we do have some of these 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 assured that the doctors and nurses are going to do everything they can to make your surgery successful.
  • Arrange to have children come to the hospital for a visit when you feel up to it.
  • Talk with your close friends and family 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.

We invite you to ask questions and talk honestly with us about your concerns. At St. Joseph Hospital we will talk with you and work to ensure that you and your family are treated with the respect and kindness you deserve.