Managing pain related to an injury or surgery can be challenging, and stress can play a significant role in the recovery process. Stress is often responsible for increasing blood pressure and triggering inflammation in the body, resulting in more complicated and longer recovery times.

A recent study determined that that the likelihood of experiencing post-surgery complications was 17% greater in those with moderate anxiety or depression. Stress and depression can exhaust your mental and physical stamina and take your focus away from healing and recovery. So how can someone manage their stress and anxiety and get back to a successful recovery?

Ask for help

Relying on family, friends, or a trusted care provider during this time is the most important first step in helping yourself. You don’t have to go through it alone. Care professionals can provide support with medications, and counseling and social interaction with family and friends can positively affect your mental well-being and recovery.  Keep in touch with your doctor about the anxiety or depression you are feeling and make a habit of spending time with friends and family.

Keep moving

This is easier said than done if you are recovering from an injury or surgery, but it’s important to keep moving. Even the smallest of movements lets the brain know that you’re working to get better. Consider reaching out to a licensed physical therapist to create a recovery plan specifically tailored to you. A physical therapist can play an important role in your rehabilitation by improving your mobility and managing your pain through movement.

Anxiety and depression are feelings that every human will experience in their lifetime. A life-changing event, such as an injury or surgery is a common time for some to experience increased stress or feelings of depression. Keep in touch with your health care provider, reach out to friends and family, and keep moving, whether it’s from your bedroom floor or regular appointments with your physical therapist.