Originally Posted by HappyMama
I was wondering what others' experiences have been with doing toe exercises after bunion surgery.
How much do you push yourself? To the point where it barely hurts, hurts substantially or kills you? I'm finding that I'm a wimp. I push it to where it hurts a little and I hold the toe in that position for about 10 seconds but I'm not really pushing that hard. I do about 4 sessions throughout the day, anywhere from 5-20 minutes each session. I find that if I do them in a hot bath it helps, but maybe that is just psychological.
Anyways, how are you all doing with them? Do you push hard? How often do you do them? Is it helping?
I really want to do what is best so I get this stiffness gone asap, even if it hurts. I just don't know if I should push myself more or not.
I think how hard you push yourself depends on your stage of recovery. At first, as we know from some posts on this board, pushing yourself too hard can cause complications. After your bone is healed, though, you can push yourself a lot more and do it safely. My doctor told me today that my bone is fully healed (I'm two and a half months post-op) and it is safe for me to "really push it" and he actually encouraged me to, in order to recapture some of my lost mobility. He said to do the exercises "a lot" and to go for increasing range of motion, and not to feel I need to "baby it." I want to stress that these instructions were tailored to me, given that I'm at the two and a half to three months post-op stage of recovery and the bone happens to be healed--and wouldn't apply to those with newer bunionectomies and/or those with a healing problem. I won't see him again until I go in for my second bunionectomy. From here on in, he says, it's just time and exercise.
One word of advice: what helped me most was to ask my doctor VERY SPECIFIC questions (HOW MANY TIMES should I do these exercises, HOW OFTEN, HOW HARD, should I PRESS AND HOLD OR JUST PRESS.) You get the drill. I don't care if it's a pain in his behind. Asking general questions usually gets me general answers; asking specific questions gets me information I can use.