Coping with Your Fear of Surgery

Posted: Aug 22 in Surgery Blog tagged by Staff

It’s not irrational to feel some anxiety at the prospect of surgery. While general surgery procedures and laparoscopic operations are very different in nature there are risks involved with both. You will experience some discomfort during the recovery period, and the idea of being incapacitated for any period of time makes many people nervous. In other situations patients become anxious due to bad experiences with surgery that they have encountered in the past. Surgical anxiety can become significant, however, when it is severe enough that you are experiencing physical symptoms of anxiety such as a racing heartbeat, hyperventilation or nausea.

It is important to deal with any surgical anxiety you may experience. People who have diagnosed anxiety disorders are most likely to experience surgery anxiety, but other people may experience it as well.

There are a number of ways to reduce fear about an upcoming surgery:

  • Gather as much information as possible. The more you know, the more comfortable you will feel.
  • Do not be afraid to consult with more than one surgeon. There are many in the Ft. Myers area. You need to feel comfortable with your medical practitioner.
  • Talk to your doctor about your fears. Your doctor can give you information that can help you feel more comfortable.
  • Explore relaxation techniques such as massage, meditation, yoga, herbal teas and medicines and hypnosis. These can help reduce your level of anxiety. Remember that herbal medicines should not be taken without consulting your doctor first.
  • If your anxiety persists, consider talking to a counselor or psychologist. Your doctor may be able to recommend one who is experienced with surgical anxiety. This can be especially helpful if your anxiety is related to prior negative experiences with surgery.

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