The reason you had a hernia in the first place was that you had weakened tissue that couldn’t withstand the pressure of certain conditions or circumstances.
Of course, not all hernias can be avoided; some occur due to injury, age, congenital conditions, or previous surgeries. But many hernia causes can be controlled, and addressing these issues are critical if you want to avoid another hernia in the future. If any of the following applies to you, resolving it can reduce your chances of a recurring hernia.
When you’re carrying around too much weight, it adds excess pressure to your abdomen and stresses your muscles and connective tissues, leaving you vulnerable to a hernia. That’s why pregnant women are more vulnerable to hernias. But delivering the baby aptly addresses the problem, as does losing weight if you’re obese.
Improper lifting technique is one of the most common causes of hiatal hernias. Bending at your knees rather than your waist, using your legs muscles, and keeping your back straight when lifting heavy items can help you avoid a hernia.
Better yet, use a hand truck or enlist a friend to help move large items, especially if you’ve already had a hernia.
Smoking wreaks havoc throughout your entire body, including your ability to heal properly from hernia surgery. Nicotine is a vasoconstrictor, which means that smoking chokes off your blood supply and the essential oxygen and nutrients needed for healing and cell repair.
Smoking also leads to respiratory problems such as bronchitis, emphysema, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease — all of which lead to chronic coughing, a huge contributor to hernias.
Studies show that diabetes can increase the chances you’ll have a second hernia after you’ve had one repaired — especially if you had an incisional hernia, the type that occurs at a previous surgical site. Keeping your blood sugar under control can help you avoid postoperative complications and recurrent hernias.
Your core muscles — the ones in your trunk, pelvis, and abdominal area — are the main support system for your groin and abdomen, which are the most common sites of hernias.
Strengthening your core by performing planks and other targeted exercises can help you avoid a future hernia. Here are a few core exercises you may need to work into your daily routine, but make sure you check with Dr. Farrow first before trying any of them.
Like all surgical procedures, hernia repair requires a certain amount of downtime so your body can heal properly. Dr. Farrow uses a minimally invasive laparoscopic technique whenever possible, so your recovery time after hernia repair is reduced, but if you don’t follow our post-op instructions, you can set yourself up for a hernia recurrence.
To learn more about hernia repair and how to make sure you never need it again, schedule an appointment online, or call our friendly staff today.