Once you are out of bariatric surgery and start losing weight you’ll be healthier, you’ll feel better and you’ll look better, for many patients that’s all they could want or hope for... But the extra skin that many patients have after wls, leads them to consider reconstructive plastic surgery. In addition to improving your appearance, patients often take this route for medical reasons including rashes and problems maintaining hygiene between the skin folds.
The most used plastic surgeries that are made are:
- Abdomen (Also known as a tummy tuck)
- Breast (Such as breast lift or breast augmentation)
- Neck or face (Neck lift or facelift)
- Thighs (Thigh lift plastic surgery)
- Upper Arms (Upper arm lift)
- Entire body (Total body lift) But before rushing to get your cosmetic surgery it is really important that you wait about a year or two.
But before rushing to get your cosmetic surgery it is really important that you wait about a year or two...
You might be wondering why? Because after a year or two you’ve already lost as much weight as the surgery let you, so after all that time you already know how to eat healthy and also how to take care of your body which is really important after a cosmetic surgery.
Remember that the recovery after a weight loss surgery does involve careful attention so sticking to what the doctor instructs is the best option and this will allow you to heal better and also your stomach will heal better.
In your recovery process you can experience:
- Nausea or vomiting is especially common within the first few months following weight loss surgery. After your stomach is fully healed, you’ll quickly learn what your stomach can and can’t handle. How you eat is as important as what you eat when it comes to preventing nausea and vomiting, avoid eating and drinking too quickly or too much, take small bites and chew your food thoroughly
- Body aches – should pass with time. If they become too uncomfortable, talk with your doctor about which pain relievers are safe. You should typically avoid NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as ibuprofen or Aleve.
- Weak or tired feeling – should also pass with time, especially once your new bariatric diet is in place and, as soon as you are feeling up to it, begin your exercise program.
- Feeling cold – this is caused by metabolism and weight loss and the fact that you have less fat insulating your body.
- Constipation – drinking more fluids, eating fibrous foods or taking fiber supplements and moving around regularly should help.
- Diarrhea or loose stools – usually diet related and requires the avoidance of “trigger” foods that disagree with your stomach.
- Gas – also diet related.
- Dumping syndrome, especially after gastric bypass, is caused by rapid emptying of your stomach after a meal. Symptoms include weakness, dizziness, flushing and warmth, nausea and palpitation immediately or shortly after eating. If you don’t adopt the right habits, this problem can continue over the long-term.
- Gurgling noises – not necessarily uncomfortable, but it’s worth noting. Gurgling noises are completely normal and are due to the different way your new digestive system pushes air through. The best way to prevent gurgling noises is to avoid swallowing air (i.e. avoid carbonated beverages, sipping through a straw, eating or drinking too quickly and chewing gum).
- Thrush (yeast infection) – this can be a side effect of the antibiotics you are on to prevent infection. Symptoms include changes to your tongue such as a white coating, redness or inflammation. Thrush is easily cured with medicine, so let your doctor know if it starts to develop.
Your emotional state may also be a little shaky immediately following surgery. It’s common for patients to feel scared, uncertain or moody due to hormonal changes and to the emotional effects of adjusting to a new life after weight loss surgery.
Other things you may experience include:
- Skin changes such as acne or dry skin occur with some patients. The right bariatric diet and bariatric vitamins are your best defense. There are also many over the counter creams and lotions that can help. Worst case, partner with your dermatologist to find a treatment that works.
- Hair loss this can be an alarming side effect of rapid weight loss, but it is only temporary. It happens in about half of all patients in the year following surgery. Proper nutrition is the best defense, including protein and the right bariatric vitamins. Several other treatments can also help, including the application of special shampoos and oils (Nioxin shampoo, flax seed oil, biotin tablets or powder).
It typically takes patients anywhere from two to six weeks to start feeling balanced and back to normal again. After getting through the bariatric surgery recovery phase, following are the ways that your life after weight loss surgery will be permanently changed.