We’ll just be direct and say that suffering an injury to any joint or bone can be incredibly stressful. The whole purpose of treatment such as casting or joint surgery is to help the body recover in an optimal way so normal activities can be resumed. Sometimes, the aftermath of treatment itself can create a bit of an obstacle. Primarily, it is sleep that may decline regarding quality. There are several factors that could keep you from the sleep that you need. First, let’s discuss why we want to help you rest well after orthopedic surgery.
Why Sleep is Important after Surgery
Sleep is crucial to the overall quality of life. Without it, we become cranky, something we don’t need more of while recovering from an injury and subsequent surgery. In addition to keeping you in a better mood, sleep is also beneficial for:
- Physical healing. When we are in the most relaxed state of sleep, all physical energy is turned inward, where it can address important needs such as hormone production to promote tissue growth. During sleep, inflammation and swelling are also attended to.
- Energy and stamina. Part of many patients’ treatment program is a stint in rehab. Physical therapy is not strenuous, but it does require a lot of the body because healing is still taking place. Therefore, physical therapy rehab after an injury goes much more smoothly when you are well rested.
- Emotional wellness. One of the surprising aspects of a physical injury is the emotional toll it can take. Sleep provides respite from the mental exhaustion of recovery, which can minimize or help you avoid post-operative depression and anxiety.
Why You May Not be Sleeping
Interestingly enough, some of the common reasons that sleep are disrupted after orthopedic treatment are the very reasons why sleep is so important at this time. For example:
- Discomfort from an injury or subsequent surgery can linger at low levels for several days or weeks. Naturally, it is difficult to sleep well when finding a comfortable position is a challenge.
- Depression, or just feeling a little blue, after orthopedic treatment can inhibit sleep, which then plays into more depression and anxiety.
- Pain medication may also disrupt sleep patterns for a short time.
One of the biggest reasons why sleep may not come easy after an injury is because you cannot sleep in your favorite position.