Take a look at the post called "Post Surgery Tips", it's the first one in our field and is extremly helpfull. As for a treadmill, if you can afford it, do it! You'll love it and it will be very beneficial. I bought one a while ago and couldn't live without it. If you're complaining about Chicago, try living in Manitoba, Canada!! It's minus 45 today!! Anyway my point is I agree with you, when you live in a place with cold winters it's very difficult to get around and be active. When is your surgery scheduled for? I hope this helped. Take care and keep warm. Kristy.
I insisted that mine not be done until spring and I wore flip flops all summer so I didn't have to deal with shoes and socks. Also, I had a grabber in every room. It's been 7 months and I still use a grabber to pick my bathmat up off the floor. I have a Y membership and I go in their therapy pool.
The necessities I couldn't live without were:
(I passed on the raised toilet seat - didn't need it)
Prepared ahead meals (for convenience)
I think the treadmill is an excellent idea if you can afford one and have the room for it.
Again, I totally disagree with the flip flops. They are extremely hard on the back, provide no support. The best shoes for people with bad backs are ones with good arch support. A good pair of slip-ons are best the first couple weeks and after that, good sneakers or tie shoes are really best. (The motion of pulling your foot to your knee is one the physical therapist had me doing at 2 weeks anyway. It helped!)
The grabber and raised toilet seat have been lifesavers for me. The other thing I couldn't live without is my recliner. I spend the majority of my time either in my recliner or sleeping in bed. Make sure you have some ice packs, and some books and movies to keep yourself entertained. I haven't really been able to eat much, so all of my prepared meals are still sitting in the freezer. I'm sure they'll be helpful later though. Make sure you can microwave them- I can't put anything in the oven or take it out because it requires too much bending and reaching. (Don't recommend using the grabber to take things in/out of the oven. ) When you come home from the hospital, putting a trash bag on the car seat will help you maneuver in and out of the car easier.
That's all I can think of for now- if I think of more, I'll post them later!
You'll prbobably get tired of hearing this...but the # 1 aide was the reacher. I also was glad I had my recliner, a raised toilet seat, and a walker. As for the recliner, make sure you can recline and sit up w/o having to use your back muscle. (If you get one, that is.) I had to return my 1st one and find one that automaticlly went back and up. As for the walker, they will offer you one at the hospital. Definatly check out the top thread on the back boards, "Post-op tips". I printed that off and used it as a shopping/check list prior to surgery. Txhunni had a real good point. The motion of bringing up your feet to your lap should be practiced early on. My out patient P/T didn't tell me that and when I started my real P/T at 3 mo. it was still hard for me to get my legs to myt lap. Today, at 5 mo. I still have to really pull my left leg to get it up and it doesn't come all the way up. It's becasue I didn't start that excercise early on. So, get a good pair of walking shoes, so you are ready when it is time to go walking.