Life After Gastric Bypass
Looking At Lifer After Gastric Bypass
Gastric bypass surgery is a life changing experience and the potential difficulties of life after gastric bypass surgery should not be underestimated.
The first few days after gastric bypass surgery will affect you on many different levels. Firstly, you will be in discomfort from the surgical procedure itself, although you should have been given effective pain relief to counteract this. Secondly, you will be experiencing the severe emotional side effects of your withdrawal from food. The hunger pangs will be gone and after a lifetime of having a close relationship with food, your brain will probably struggle to deal with that.
Following surgery, your diet will be restricted to water and liquid food. What remains of your stomach will only be able to accommodate tiny amounts of either at any given time and therefore you will have to manage with tiny sips taken regularly over the day. Gas is a painful side effect. You will also need to walk about as much as possible, even though this is likely to be painful. You probably won’t feel like walking, but you must as it will help the recovery.
Mood swings are common and many people report feeling like they are trapped on an emotional rollercoaster. The combination of anesthesia and undergoing a life changing experience can cause crying and inexplicable bouts of misery, but this will pass. It is not unusual to have “why did I do this?” thoughts during your early life after gastric bypass surgery. But do not despair, these feelings will pass as time goes on and the weight falls off.
Early weight loss is likely to be dramatic and for the first few weeks, the weight will fall off fairly quickly. However, weight loss can plateau periodically, and some patients can even report small weight gains at intervals.
Once things settle down, you can move from liquids to mushy foods such as egg, cottage cheese, and yoghurt. What the stomach pouch can tolerate will vary on a day to day basis. You might find that something you ate one day with no ill effects will cause nausea the next time you eat it. This is normal, so do not worry. Because of the restricted size of the stomach pouch, portions will necessarily be tiny and anything more than a tiny amount of food will cause feelings of significant discomfort.
In the weeks and months that follow, you will experience a great deal of highs and lows in your life after gastric bypass. As the weight continues to drop off, you will feel joy at how well you are doing, but because your relationship with food has irrevocably changed forever, there will be some difficult times of great depression and regret. In many ways, it might feel like you have lost a best friend who was once a source of enormous comfort.
Hair loss is another side effect of life after gastric bypass surgery. Some people lose more hair than others, but everyone loses at least some of their precious hair. Don’t panic, this too will pass.
At the end of the first year, take a good look in the mirror and examine the results of all your hard work with pride and congratulations, you have survived life after gastric bypass surgery!