Intro: 3 Ways to Amuse Yourself in the Hospital
Well, unfortunately I had a spontaneous pneumothorax occur this weekend, which in basic terms meant I popped one of my lungs and it put air in the rest of my chest. The result is that I had to spend several days hooked up to a chest tube and unable to move without a lot of pain (and a bit of help!)
Luckily, there are many ways that you can amuse yourself in these situations.
Sorry, I unfortunately do not have my camera in the room out of respect of my roommate's privacy, so I hope that my illustrations will help.
Step 1: If You Can, Go for a Walk!
No one likes blood clots, and if you're stuck in a hospital bed, chances are you've probably got a little risk for one. Sure, they can give you meds to prevent it, but nothing helps as much as getting up and walking, even just for two to three minutes.
Hooked up to machines and tubes? Often times, your nurse can help you make them portable by getting a roller cart for an IV or other medical device. I was surprised when they were encouraging me to walk with my chest tube, but it felt SO GOOD afterwards, and definitely helped break the monotony.
Step 2: Ask for a Snack
If your hospital's meals are not the best, or if you just get a little hungry between meals, usually they have snacks available on the floor for patients, EVEN PATIENTS ON RESTRICTED DIETS. There will usually be some kind of soda or juice, as well as cookies, crackers, or fresh fruit available to patients between meals.
It never hurts to ask for a snack, and they will usually oblige as they want you to stay as happy and comfortable as you can in your present situation. I found out last night that my floor has chocolate ice cream!
Step 3: "Nurse, I Mustache You a Question, But I'll Shave It for Later"
I had to be on oxygen for a few days to help my lungs heal up, and I kept asking my husband to bring me paper, tape, and a sharpie. He didn't get a chance to bring them up before I got taken off oxygen earlier today, so I hope that one of you PLEASE do this.
Simply draw a fake mustache on a piece of paper and lightly tape to the tube sticking out of your nose. The mere IDEA has kept me amused all week.