Choosing to undergo bariatric surgery, or weight-loss surgery, is a huge step for anyone suffering from obesity. It can be an extremely difficult decision to make. The surgery is extremely important, and the steps that come after are even more important.
The measures you take and the support you receive after undergoing weight-loss surgery will determine the success of the procedure and how well you will be able to maintain your results.
What Is Bariatric Surgery?
Bariatric surgery is a term that includes various procedures targeting weight loss. These procedures have been proven to have significant positive effects in a variety of health areas, including weight loss, cardiovascular functions, and recovery from diabetes.
Once you have undergone bariatric surgery, the real fight will begin. You will begin to crave foods, and your body will crave the old lifestyle that contributed to needing the surgery in the first place.
This is where willpower and external support will be your greatest ally. Having a strong support system is extremely necessary, as this will help you fight off negative thoughts and impulses when you feel like you are losing your weight-loss battle.
One extremely helpful way to find external support is joining a weight-loss support group. These are an excellent way to find support and be a part of a community of like-minded people who are fighting the same battle as you are.
How to Pick the Right Support Group
There are many weight-loss support groups in every city. They are offered by community organizations, schools, mental-health service providers, hospitals, and clinics. Finding the right support group is very important.
Support groups will vary in a number of aspects, so attending different support groups and finding out where you feel comfortable is a vital step in the process.
There are many different kinds of support groups, including the following:
• Peer support groups – These groups are led by people with lived experience who organize or facilitate the meetings. They can advise you from a place of empathy and understanding. However, they may be unable to answer more complicated questions about your situation.
• Formal support groups – These groups are led by health professionals with a deep understanding of the problem. These professionals can answer complicated questions but may lack the friendliness and understanding that a peer support group can provide.
• Diagnosis-based support groups – These support groups are meant specifically for people with a certain diagnosis.
Questions to Consider
Before and after attending a support group, consider the following questions:
• Are new members being accepted?
• Which topics are being discussed?
• How often do they meet?
• What are the qualifications of the facilitators?
• How long do the meetings last?
• Am I being included in conversations?
• Am I feeling comfortable?
• Am I enjoying the group?
• Am I learning new and helpful ways to cope with my issues?
• Are my issues being addressed in the group?
Joining a support group for the first time can be nerve-racking, but a good support group will help you feel comfortable and provide you with genuine support throughout your journey.
Find Out More from Dr. LePort
Dr. Peter LePort, a skilled surgeon with years of experience, will be happy to speak to you about your support-group options. To schedule a consultation, contact us today.