What Will You Have To Do To Qualify For Bariatric Surgery?

Health & Medical Blog

Bariatric surgery is often the last chance for someone to consistently lose a large amount of weight. Diets haven't worked (or they've worked temporarily and then resulted in more weight gain), and you're starting to experience chronic health problems as a result of the extra weight. But getting bariatric surgery requires you to meet several conditions. Some are very basic, such as having at least one or two obesity-related health conditions and being above a certain weight. Others, though, require a longer commitment. But if you meet them, your surgery can go forward and be more of a success.

Address Psychological Issues Behind Your Eating

A lot of overeating is due to psychological issues like feeling bored or stressed. Food is comforting, and it doesn't talk back (jokes about indigestion aside). The problem is that the surgery won't stop you from wanting to eat when you're bored, stressed, sad, celebrating, or what have you. That can sabotage the effects of the surgery and create more health problems for you. Before the surgery date, you've got to figure out ways to cope with stress, boredom, and so on that don't involve food. That can mean getting therapy but speak with your doctor first as they may have suggestions you can try as you wait and see whether you'll need to go to a therapist.

Lose Weight – for Real

This is one of the strangest parts of preparing for bariatric weight loss surgery, but sometimes you have to lose weight before you're approved to undergo the surgery to lose weight. It's frustrating because if you could lose weight on your own, you wouldn't be undergoing this surgery, right? But the equipment used in the surgery, and your body's ability to recover from the anesthesia and surgery are all affected by how heavy you are. Losing weight is necessary because otherwise you could be harmed by the anesthesia, for example. Keep in mind that this is not weight loss that you have to keep off for years and years. You may have to keep the weight off for a few months before the surgery can go forward. Your doctor can give you more details.

Re-evaluate Drug and Alcohol Use

Drugs and alcohol can make adhering to post-surgery eating instructions difficult. Bariatric surgery changes your dietary needs permanently, and while your doctor might be OK with you having a beer once a year on your birthday or something, if you're a heavy drinker or drug user, historically that's been a sign that adherence will likely be bad. You're not necessarily going to have to be teetotal after the surgery. But you are going to have to look at your motivations for using these substances and have very good control over how much you use.

Bariatric surgery for weight loss can be a lifesaver, but you have to go into it fully ready for all the changes it will bring and that you'll have to make. Speak with your doctor about the preparation you'll need to ensure the surgery will be successful in the long term.

For more information about bariatric weight loss surgery, contact a local doctor.  


4 October 2022

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