Dos and Don’ts to Protect Your New Hip
Expect your new hip joint to reduce the pain you felt before your surgery and increase the range of motion in your joint. But don’t expect to do everything you could do before the hip became painful. High-impact activities such as running or playing basketball may be too stressful on your artificial joint. But in time, you may be able to swim, play golf, hike or ride a bike comfortably.
Dos and don’ts (precautions) vary depending on your doctor’s surgical technique and preferences. These precautions will help to prevent the new joint from dislocating and ensure proper healing. Some of the most common precautions are listed below.
- Do keep the leg facing forward.
- Do keep the affected leg in front as you sit or stand.
- Do use a high barstool in the kitchen.
- Do kneel on the knee on the operated leg (the bad side).
- Do apply heat before exercising to assist with range of motion. Use a heating pad or hot, damp towel for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Do cut back on your exercises if your muscles begin to ache, but don’t stop doing them.
- Don’t cross your legs at the knees for at least 6 to 8 weeks.
- Don’t bring your knee up higher than your hip.
- Don’t lean forward while sitting or as you sit down.
- Don’t try to pick up something on the floor while you are sitting.
- Don’t turn your feet excessively inward or outward when you bend down.
- Don’t reach down to pull up blankets when lying in bed.
- Don’t bend at the waist beyond 90 degrees.