Are you having surgery? Are you scared of the pain, the anesthesia, the time off work, the side-effects of all the medications you’ll be given? These are all common, and VALID concerns. Surgery is serious business, but there are times that it really must be done to improve quality of life, to prolong life, or to enhance life.
Over the past 5 or 6 decades, surgery has become a much safer endeavor as hospital OR conditions have improved and methods of sterilization and decontamination have stepped into the 21st century. Many companies have created tools to make the patient more comfortable during the entire procedure, from warming the sheets and giving the patient fuzzy foot-cover, to lightweight headphones that deliver specially-chosen music for surgery, wirelessly and cordlessly!
Here are some of the most frequently-asked questions that I get about the benefits of music during surgery:
1. What are the benefits of music during surgery:
Patients using music (through cordless headphones) pre-surgery, during and after surgery, report less fear and anxiety medication before procedure, less anesthesia during surgery, and less pain medication after surgery. They also report fewer side-effects from the anesthesia, such as nausea and vomiting, and a faster return to home, work and life in general! In addition, when patient receives the music through headphones, the surgeon can have his own more upbeat music, and the patient isn’t affected by that. Also, conversations that the doctors and nurses have, that patient doesn’t want to hear, will be obscured. Finally, with Baby boomers having more and more joint replacement surgeries, patients don’t have to hear the drilling, sawing and hammering that goes on.
2. What are the drawbacks of music during surgery: absolutely none!
3. Do the headphones block all sounds in the OR?: No, the surgical headphones are intended to greatly decrease the OR noises, but during regional anesthesia and surgery, the patient can still hear questions that the doctor might need to ask.
4. Will my doctors approve of this? Most doctors do approve of the use of headphones during surgery. The surgeon and the anesthesiologist both need to give their approval. It is important to print out our free article entitled “How to Talk with Your Doctor about Using Music During Surgery.”
5. How did you choose the music on the headphones?: I have been helping patients choose their perfect music for surgery for almost 25 years. I had been reading about the benefits of music in reducing medication and calming the patient, but through my own personal research and experience, I discovered that slow, steady, soothing instrumental music, that has the tempo of the healthy, resting heartbeat is ideal. This is what get the entrainment process going, and even when the patient is under general anesthesia, the body’s heartbeat, breathing and blood pressure all tend to stabilize and synchronize with the slow, steady pulse of the music.
6. Can I continue to use them after surgery?: Yes. The headphones include a USB cable and charger so that after your surgery or other medical procedure, you can connect the headphones to your laptop and load hundreds more pieces or songs of your choice. With care, your headphones should last for many years!