Each doctor has a plan for when and how to use devices such as splints and slings. It is important to follow the specific recommendations made by your doctor for the splint. In the early days and weeks after surgery, there is a chance for overuse of the elbow and damage to the area that was operated on. The splint provides necessary protection and is required.
Doing the exercises prescribed by your doctor or physical therapist can help keep your motion and avoid swelling. Wearing the splint protects the surgical site and increases the chances of quicker wound healing. Follow your doctor's advice carefully, and avoid taking shortcuts without your doctor's approval. When in doubt, call the doctor's office and ask questions. This may save you additional problems in the long run and help you understand the day-to-day healing process.