Updated: September 30, 2016
If you’re about to stay in hospital for one night, chances are you’re either having some tests done or you’re undergoing a minor operation. These days we’re in and out of hospital relatively quickly unless we’re having major surgery. Even though you may only be in hospital for one night, you will need to prepare yourself for your stay.
Here’s what you need to do in order to make your time in hospital an easier one:
Before you go to hospital
- Tell your family doctor when you will be in hospital so they have it on their records
- Think about how you’re going to manage when you get home from hospital. Will you need someone to take care of you?
- Make sure you have a good supply of painkillers at home. They will probably come in very useful if you’re recovering after an operation. If you make sure you have plenty in stock it will mean you can rest rather than going out to buy more when you should be taking things easy.
- If you have been given instructions to help you prepare for you stay in hospital, it’s important that you follow them.
- Ensure that pets will be looked after while you’re away
- Make sure your children or anyone who is dependent on you is also looked after properly.
- Work out how you’re going to get to the hospital. Is someone going to take you or will you go by bus?
- How are you going to get home? Its best that you do not drive or hop on a bus as you may be drowsy after your operation.
On the day of your visit to hospital:
- Take your prescribed medications unless you’re told not to
- Have a bath or a shower the night before your operation or in the morning
- Make sure you don’t have anything to eat or drink before your operation/procedure. You should get a leaflet or a booklet that tells you when you should stop eating
- Avoid wearing makeup, nail varnish and piercings as these can attract bacteria. You will be permitted to wear a wedding ring
- Make sure you have all your medication with you
- To prevent boredom, bring a book, a newspaper or even a puzzle book
- Make sure you have enough toiletries, as well as night wear, and slippers. You may also want to bring a dressing gown too.
- If you wear glasses or a hearing aid you should bring them to the hospital with you. contact lenses are not permitted.
- Don’t bring any valuables or money with you as the hospital won’t have anywhere safe to keep them.
After the Operation
- You should ideally rest for 24-48 hours after your operation
- You should also refrain from drinking alcohol, driving, operating machinery, signing legal documents and making difficult decisions 24 hours after your operation
- You should also refrain from lifting or carrying children or any heavy items.
If you’re still not sure what you need to do in preparation for your visit, ask your GP or the hospital you’re about to attend for advice.
Staying in the hospital for one night can be a little risky depending on the surgery. While you’re there try and still enjoy yourself. Have your family bring some cards or a couple games. This could actually turn out to be a memorable experience if you play your cards right. Don’t forget that there is a whole world taking chances out there.