Best Gifts to Celebrate Recovery from a Bunion Surgery
Everyone likes to wear comfortable shoes, but with a bunion present, that is not always the case.
A bunion is a bony outward bump that forms most commonly in the base of the big toe.
It is a deformity that affects the bone and the soft tissue surrounding it, and it usually forms when the joint affected undergoes stress for long periods of time.
Bunions tend to affect women more than men, and this may be due to the fact that women wear more pointed high heels and tight shoes.
They may also be caused by arthritis and genetic factors. A bunion may or may not be painful.
A good candidate for bunion surgery would be a patient who complains of significant pain in the affected joint, which limits them from daily activities such as jogging, walking, or working.
Another reason for surgery would be when the inflammation and swelling that does not improve over time.
Other symptoms that give way for surgery are when pain medications stop working, foot stiffness develops and an inability to wear shoes.
A bunion surgery removes the extra bone in the joint and re-aligns it to make the foot straighter. The doctor will most likely use screws and wires to hold the joint together.
Bunion surgery rarely requires hospitalization and in most cases, surgery takes about one hour. Most patients get to go home the same day.
Since most patients get to go home the same day, this provides more time for family and friends to be there during the recovery period and help the patient feel more relaxed and optimistic about their recovery.
Recovering for bunion surgery usually takes about five to six weeks, but full recovery may take a couple of months.
Family and friends should know that during the first few weeks, the patient will have a cast or surgical boot to protect the foot. It is important for the patient and caregiver not to wet the stitches.
Once the cast is removed, a brace may be needed to support the foot during the recovery period.
There are many things that the patient won’t be able to do or participate in, hence the importance for the caregivers to help during this process.
How to help during recovery
There are many ways to help the patient during their recovery.
The patient won’t be able to bear any weight on the foot and will need to move around with the help of crutches or a wheelchair.
Caregivers should help in providing a safe home during this period by removing all rugs that slide and removing any cords from the floor.
Not everyone likes to use crutches or a wheelchair, but a personalized one with a different color or engraved message is a great gift for their recovery.
This is a gift that is unique and will put a smile on the face of the patient. Icing the foot is important and the doctor will recommend icing the foot a couple of times a day.
A great gift idea would be a Thermopeutic ice pack or a cold therapy gel pack. These are items that can just be put in the freezer and taken out when needed. With this, there is no need to grab a plastic bag and fill it with ice. These gifts will make it easier for the patient to follow the recommendations given by their doctor and ease the recovery process.
The doctor will also recommend physical therapy or send someone to your home for the exercises. It is important for the caregiver to know the types of exercises recommended so they can assist the patient with them. These exercises can be done together and thus make it a more fun and relationship-building experience.
One of the most important things to look out for after surgery is the type of shoe the patient wears.We all know medical shoes are dull and not pretty. However, they are very comfortable and serve a purpose, which is why doctors recommend them depending on a patient’s condition.
One option is to gift the patient a modern shoe that fits all the requirements and criteria from the doctor. The most recommended are shoes that are soft, made of oxford leather and are athletic. Choose a color and style that the patient likes. This will make a great gift.
The patient will be eager to wear shoes everywhere.
Another way of making the recovery period smoother is to help lookout for any complications.
Complications from bunion surgery are uncommon, however, the following things may occur: dressings falling off, infections at the incision site, adverse side effects from medication.
Although it is not a material gift, gift the patient your time to help out with everything, including household chores and by looking out for the mentioned complications.
There are many things that can be done to uplift a patient’s feelings during post-surgery.
Here are some examples of gifts to give.
A foot basket
Gifting a basket is a great idea, and if it’s for a foot surgery patient, you can include candy, post-surgery socks, foot massager, candy, a gift card for orthopedic shoes, foot moisturizing cream and even candles.
A personalized coffee mug
If your loved one drinks coffee, a personalized message with a bag of favorite coffee beans.
Warm socks will keep the feet protected and the patient happy.
A foot cast hat
This is a curious and unique type of gift. It is like a beanie, but for the foot and covers the bandages and cast.
A pedicure gift card
An excellent gift for those that love taking care of their feet by getting pedicures and foot massages.
The knee scooter
The knee scooter is a little more extreme, but for those that do not like crutches or wheelchairs, this is an option for them.
A water cast protector
This gift will definitely help take all the worrying away from the patient when it’s time to shower. This cast will protect the foot by covering the entire leg.
Balloons and flowers
A traditional touch to put a smile on every type of patient.
A foot wedge pillow
Comfort is what patients seek the most after surgery. A foot wedge pillow comes in many sizes and can be used on a sofa, bed, or inside the car.
A getaway vacation
Plan a vacation, whether it’s close or far away. Most vacations include a lot of walking, so be sure to arrange for the date to be a couple of months after the surgery, making sure that the patient’s entire foot has recovered and the patient has already gone to their follow-up appointments.
A movie night with friends or family
If the patient isn’t ready to go out, bring the fun to their house. Binge-watch various movies, and don’t forget to bring some chips and dip for the entire gang to enjoy.
Most patients recover without complications and experience a great reduction in foot pain.
Patients will also notice better alignment in their big toe.
One of the important things to consider during their recovery is teamwork and a great support system from family and friends.
Although bunion surgery is not complicated when compared to other bigger surgeries, the general post-operative recommendations and help from caregivers are the same and apply equally.
The more positive people the patient surrounds themselves with, the better the attitude during their recovery.
- Michael, To Kai-Tsun. “Bunion: To Treat or Not to Treat.” Journal of Orthopaedics, June 2015, www.researchgate.net/publication/276533943_Bunion_To_Treat_or_Not_To_Treat.
- Morrison, William. “Bunion Removal.” Healthline, 18 Aug. 2017, www.healthline.com/health/bunion-removal.
- Thordarson, David. “Editorial Commentary: The Great Endoscopically Assisted Bunion Surgery That Will Never Become Popular-I Will Not Try This at Home.” Arthroscopy: The Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery, vol. 34, no. 6, June 2018, pp. 1964–1965., https://www.arthroscopyjournal.org/article/S0749-8063(18)30191-9/pdf.