No one wants to have surgery, but sometimes it really is necessary if you want to continue with your life. Surgical procedures have dramtically improved over the last 50-60 years and most surgeries are completed with no problems whatsoever. Unfortunately, even when the surgery is completely successful, recovery from surgery can be difficult and stressful.
Of course there is no such thing as a “typical surgery.” Surgery includes everything from a Cesarean section for deliver a baby to heart bypass surgery, to joint replacements. No matter what the surgery, certain after-effects can be expected: nausea, pain, grogginess, sleepiness, tiredness, weakness, dizzyness, difficulty walking, stand, sitting, sleeping and many more. Luckily these things don’t last forever, but often there is a correlation with how long these side-effects last and how much anesthesia the patient had. It’s hard to separate the side-effects of surgery from the side-effects of anesthesia, but we do know that the less anesthesia you can get by with, the faster you’ll recover and also have the least number of side-effects.
One of the best ways to reduce the likely amount of anesthesia you’ll need is to use music through headphones for 30-60 minutes before your surgery begins. This allows your body to slow down and relax and when you begin the procedure already relaxed, less anesthesia will be required to put you under. It’s important that the music be very steady, purely instrumental music with the tempo of the healthy resting heartbeat. This way, your own heartbeat and breathing can synchronize or entrain with the music you’re hearing through headphones.
If you continue to wear the headphones into the recovery area, research shows that there can be a greatly reduced amount of pain medication needed…another way to keep you from experiencing nearly as many of the side-effects. If you or a friend has surgery scheduled, please consider using music with your surgery!