5 Tips to Avoid Saying Gastric Sleeve Surgery Ruined My Life

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Undoubtedly, gastric sleeve surgery boasts the highest success rate among weight loss methods. Despite the significant success achieved post-surgery, patients may occasionally experience regret after undergoing gastric sleeve surgery. However, the reasons for this regret can vary based on numerous factors. In this article, we will present five recommendations to help you avoid saying that gastric sleeve surgery ruined my life.

Firstly, if you wish, let’s list the areas where patients struggle the most after the surgery:

1- Not being able to enjoy food

Experiencing a lack of interest in food can be a psychological challenge following gastric sleeve weight loss surgery. While your mind may crave the enjoyment of eating, the physical restrictions imposed by your smaller stomach can create a sense of regret. This often indicates a continuation of food addiction, a struggle that many patients grapple with both before and after the procedure.

Regrettably, this feeling of remorse can have a lasting impact on your weight management, potentially leading to weight gain if not addressed through changes in mindset and habits. Once you’ve successfully overcome a detrimental habit like overeating, it’s crucial not to romanticize or miss it. The luxury of indulging in such habits is no longer available because stretching your stomach can set off a slippery slope…

Effectively dealing with food addiction requires the involvement of professionals such as a Registered Dietitian, psychologist, or a doctor with expertise in helping individuals mend their relationship with food and regain control.

2- Not Learning How To Eat Slowly Before Surgery

Speedy eating can easily lead to overeating, a significant concern with a gastric sleeve. Prior to undergoing sleeve gastrectomy, it is highly advisable to transition into a slower eating pace. Swift consumption of food can result in it becoming lodged in the small sleeve stomach, leading to discomfort and the need for painful dislodgement.

Certain foods can easily become stuck, making it crucial to slow down and thoroughly chew each bite, pausing between bites. Always ensure that your food is well-chewed before swallowing, aiming for a consistency similar to mashed potatoes. Take tiny bites, as if you were feeding a baby, and consume small amounts gradually—around 2 tablespoons over 10-15 minutes. Embracing these mindful practices over time will contribute to the effective management and enjoyment of mealtimes.

To address this issue, it is recommended to involve professionals like a Registered Dietitian, psychologist, or doctor with expertise in helping individuals develop mindful eating habits and overcome the cycle of compulsive overeating.

3- Body Dysmorphia

Many individuals experience weight loss, but the mental adjustment to their transformed body image can take time. Body dysmorphia, an obsession with perceived insecurities and flaws, is a prevalent mental health challenge among post-bariatric surgery patients.

Understanding the mental and emotional challenges involved, you might have considered delaying gastric sleeve surgery until overcoming body dysmorphia. Grasping the extent of your weight loss requires patience and numerous adjustments. In the initial year following gastric sleeve surgery, you may still perceive yourself in the mirror as you did before. This hurdle often leads to stress, feelings of failure, and disappointment. However, once you begin to recognize your progress, a sense of confidence and satisfaction can emerge.

For many individuals, including myself, the support group on Facebook and the backing of family played a pivotal role in acknowledging and celebrating my weight loss success. It’s important to recognize that while physical changes may happen rapidly, the mental and emotional aspects of body image transformation may require additional time and support.

4- Hair Loss

Hair loss is a common side effect of rapid weight loss, typically occurring between 3 and 6 months post-surgery and potentially lasting up to 12 months. The reduced food intake and nutrient absorption contribute to stress on the body, adapting to rapid hormonal changes. Although temporary, hair loss can be a source of frustration.

However, it’s important to remain calm and not overly worry. Your hair will naturally regrow, and when it does, it may become thicker and stronger. The impact is often more noticeable if your hair was already thin before the surgery.

Here are some quick tips to minimize hair loss: Ensure a daily intake of at least 60 grams of protein, take the recommended bariatric vitamin supplements regularly, incorporate biotin and zinc into your supplement routine, use Nioxin shampoo, and include seafood in your diet. These measures can help support hair health during the post-surgery period.

5- Not Having Realistic Expectations

Many individuals approach bariatric surgery with the misconception that the procedure alone will guarantee permanent weight loss, almost like a magical solution that eliminates future struggles with weight. However, this assumption is inaccurate. Even after the surgery, adherence to the post-operative diet, nutritional plan, and regular exercise is essential for sustained success.

There’s no need to be overly anxious, as you’re not navigating this journey alone. Throughout the process, you’ll have the support of doctors, nutritionists, and fellow individuals in support groups who share their progress and experiences. It’s crucial to understand that undergoing this transformative life change will present challenges, but similar to any life hurdles, overcoming them will bring a sense of satisfaction and enhanced self-confidence.

Patients Also Express the Following: “I Regret Not Getting it Sooner.”

The most common regret we consistently hear is, “Why didn’t I undergo weight loss surgery earlier in my life? My health has improved significantly, and all my metrics are fantastic; no diabetes, no sleep apnea…”

5 Tips to Avoid Saying Gastric Sleeve Surgery Ruined My Life

Undergoing gastric sleeve surgery is a significant decision that can have a profound impact on your life. While the surgery can be a helpful tool for weight loss and improved health, it’s essential to approach it with realistic expectations and a proactive mindset. Here are five tips to avoid feeling like gastric sleeve surgery has ruined your life:

1- Set Realistic Expectations!

Before undergoing gastric sleeve surgery, consult with a specialized doctor to obtain detailed information about the results you can expect post-operation. Avoid deceiving yourself by imagining that you will achieve results very quickly and effortlessly. The post-operative process is undoubtedly a challenging recovery period that requires effort. However, if you adhere to your doctor’s instructions, you can reach your goals both more quickly and more comfortably.

2- Ensure the Experience of Your Doctor!

A gastric sleeve surgery performed by a doctor with expertise in the field and employing correct techniques will undoubtedly yield successful results. Therefore, it is crucial to thoroughly research the doctor who will be conducting the operation. Inquire about how many patients they have operated on previously and review patient testimonials. If you feel confident in the doctor’s credentials, go ahead and schedule an appointment.

3- The Hospital Should be Fully Equipped

Pay attention to the hospital where the operation will take place; is it fully equipped? Does it have state-of-the-art equipment, an intensive care unit, and an emergency department? Is it recognized as one of the reputable hospitals in the country? Does it hold internationally recognized certifications? Be sure to seek answers to such questions.

4- Check Out Patients Reviews

Examine the reviews of patients who have previously undergone surgery at the clinic you are researching. The higher the number of patients and the more positive the reviews, the more confidence you can place in the clinic. If it is a clinic where expert doctors work and successful operations are conducted, recognizing this should not be too difficult. By taking a closer look at social media accounts and websites, you can gain a comprehensive understanding.

5- Trust Yourself

Finally, trust yourself! This will be a challenging but ultimately rewarding process. If you have full confidence that you can overcome this, believe that everything will be much easier. However, as mentioned above, with a good doctor and surgery performed in a quality hospital, your procedure should never pose difficulties for you.

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