Nervous About Bariatric Surgery? Here Are Four Tips to Ease Your Anxiety
Don’t let anxiety stop you from taking control of your health. Here are four tips to ease your fears about weight loss surgery.
Deciding to undergo weight loss surgery is a huge step toward taking charge of your health. You’ll shed those stubborn pounds, feel more confident, and reduce your risk of developing serious health complications like cardiovascular disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes. Still, any major changes in your life, even the positive ones, are bound to make you a little anxious.
Will you be able to change your lifestyle habits if diet and exercise haven’t worked for you in the past? What happens if you regain some weight? Is the surgery dangerous? These are all understandable fears to have, but it’s important to not let them stop you from changing your life for the better. If you’re nervous about bariatric surgery, here are four simple tips to stay calm.
1. Do Your Research
When it comes to weight loss success, knowledge is power. Oftentimes we feel anxious about a situation when we don’t know what to expect, so we work ourselves into a frenzy thinking about all of the possible scenarios. Do your research to combat these feelings — gain a proper understanding of how bariatric surgery works, learn what to expect during procedure, and get some clarity about what your weight loss journey will look like overall. If you know where you’re going, it’s a lot easier to take the first step.
That said, make sure you’re seeking out the right information. Don’t look for articles about failure rates or people who’ve experienced complications. No surgery is 100 percent effective for 100 percent of people 100 percent of the time, but indulging in horror stories will do nothing to ease your anxiety. Your energy is better spent gathering reputable research.
2. Seek Out a Support Group
After you’ve done your research about bariatric surgery, it helps to talk to people who have already been through it. Talking to someone who’s had weight loss surgery helps you balance out science with emotion and understand the process from a patient’s point of view. They’re likely to understand your fears, and are the best people to talk to about assuaging them.
Further, a weight loss surgery support group can give you tips for success after your procedure. For instance, if you’re nervous about your ability to keep up with healthy lifestyle changes after surgery, your fellow group members will be able to tell you that it’s not as daunting as it sounds. Once you start losing weight and become more mobile, it’s easier to stick to an exercise routine. If you’re nervous about regaining weight, group members will tell you that most bariatric surgery patients keep the weight off for good. Just a short talk with a support group can boost your confidence, ease anxiety, and forge friendships that will push you through your entire journey.
3. Practice Relaxation Techniques
If you do experience some anxiety, that’s okay — just make sure you have a few relaxation strategies on hand to calm yourself back down. Clear your mind through meditation, a creative hobby, or some heart-pumping exercise. The relaxation techniques you practice now will also be useful after you’ve had bariatric surgery because high levels of stress can stunt your weight loss progress. Take a deep, cleansing breath and press on.
4. Find a Bariatric Surgeon You Trust
Once you’ve made the decision to undergo weight loss surgery, it’s time to find a bariatric surgeon you trust with a successful track record. Carefully weigh reviews and recommendations to make the decision that leaves you feeling most secure. After that, schedule a face-to-face consultation with your surgeon so you can get to know them and ask questions.
Your bariatric surgeon is an invaluable resource. They’ve likely done thousands of these procedures over the years and know everything there is to know about weight loss surgery. Be open about your concerns, both physical and emotional, because they’ll be able to quell your fears like nobody else can.
At Long Island Laparoscopic Doctors, our trusted bariatric surgeons have helped thousands of people lose weight and live happier, healthier lives. Contact us today for a consultation — we’ll walk you through your weight loss options and help ease any anxieties you may have.