How many carpenters does it take to screw in a light bulb?

None, that’s an electrician’s job.

Did you laugh? If you did, it probably made you feel better even if you had a bad day. Using humour is a great way to cope with stress and anxiety, such as facing a surgery. Even if it is minor surgery, it can still be scary to go under the knife, especially as an older person who is closer to the end of life than the beginning of it.

Fears Associated with Surgery


It really doesn’t help your anxiety levels when someone says there is no such thing as a minor surgery because any time general anesthesia is used, there are is a risk of complications. The anesthesia could wear off in the middle of surgery and you could wake up or there could be problems during the surgery and you may not way up at all. Those are some of the fears we all experience when we are about to have surgery.

Other fears that you may experience when you are scheduled for a surgical procedure depend on the type of procedure you are having. If you are undergoing prostate surgery, you may fear that you will lose sexual function. If you are having plastic surgery, you may fear that you won’t look the same or that it will fail and you will have embarrassing scars.

Using Humour to Reduce Anxiety

While some of your fears may be unfounded, the anxiety associated with them can be crippling, but you can reduce your anxiety in many ways, including using humour. Telling jokes, watching a romantic comedy on television or a funny sit-com can help us laugh and act as a distraction when we are stressed about a situation, such as having surgery.

If you have young grandchildren or young nephews or nieces, call them before you have to go in for surgery and have them tell you their best knock-knock jokes. This may seem silly, but corny jokes can make you laugh and you will get the distraction of talking with the young ones in your life as well. Their laughter should help you feel less stressed in no time.

Talk to someone about your surgery anxiety, whether it is your partner, your doctor or a chaplain at the hospital.

Knowing what will happen when you are undergoing the procedure can help reduce your anxiety.  RELAX!  Everything’s going to go okay.  Remain positive, if nothing else, for the sake of your family.