Gastric bypass is a surgical procedure aimed at weight loss, in which a small and large pouch is created in the stomach and connected to the small intestine. Any food consumed after the gastric bypass enters this new pouch before proceeding to the small intestine. As a result, a person becomes full faster and can only eat smaller amounts of food at a time.
The amount of nutrients and calories that are absorbed significantly reduces too. After a gastric bypass, a mom loses significant amounts of the excess weight gained before, during, and after her pregnancy. The loss can be up to 50%-70% of their excess weight, massively alleviating obesity-related ailments and improving quality of life.
Moms should be aware that they may feel belly pain and need painkillers for a week or more after the surgery. The incision area may also feel tender and sore. If in some cases, food rapidly empties into the small intestine, it leads to dumping syndrome. Dumping syndrome usually comes with an onset of diarrhea, nausea, faintness, and shakiness. Following the doctor’s specific instructions on what to eat in the right proportions and staying constantly hydrated, among others, ensures faster recovery.
Adopt a New Diet
Follow a specific diet plan that your doctor or dietician will recommend. Shortly after gastric bypass surgery, your diet will primarily consist of liquids and no solid food. It allows your stomach and intestines to heal appropriately.
The diet then gradually changes to pureed food and solid foods as your body adjusts and can better tolerate them. Firmer foods come in much later once you have adapted to the new diet.
You will be restricted on what to eat and drink and in what amounts. You need to know that adhering to these guidelines ensures the best possible outcome. Gaining control over your diet and eating habits ensures your new stomach does not expand, causing other side effects.
You also need to take mineral supplements, vitamins, and a multivitamin that contains iron, vitamin B-12, and calcium to counter mineral deficiencies. For example, if you had gastric bypass because of overweight issues, you might consider services like BariMeals.com, which offers pre-made meals that cater special to people struggling with weight and diets.
Steer Clear of Certain Activities
Your new lifestyle means you have to avoid certain strenuous activities and heavy lifting for a given period. It may range from six weeks to three months or more, depending on your circumstances.
Steer clear of weights over 20lbs and activities that get you in a push/pull position, for example, vacuum cleaning. Abstain from pushing, lifting, and carrying heavy loads for at least three months post-surgery.
Standing and sitting for long is not advisable too. Opt for short movements, walks, and climbing stairs instead of standing still. If you are to sit, switch positions after short intervals. When you feel better and do not feel joint pain, increase the distances that you walk. After three weeks, moms who have joint pain can opt for water exercises, which your doctor can recommend. Ensure you also stay hydrated by taking in small but consistent amounts of water.
Your doctor will likely recommend, as part of your new regimen, exercises. Exercise reduces the chances of blood clots through increased circulation and aid healing. Regularly walking will be one of the recommendations to help you recuperate faster.
Staying in bed full time is not an option. At first, it may be a painful experience, yet your body adjusts, and you soon return to full strength. Perform additional leg, coughing, and breathing exercises at the hourly or alternative recommended periods. All these work to aid circulation, prevent anesthesia, and keep your lungs clear of secretions, thus preventing pneumonia.
Talk to Your Children
Children are sensitive and can tell when something is off. You can be sure they will notice differences after your gastric bypass surgery. Talking to them about the procedure in a simple but understandable way ensures they are not unnecessarily alarmed. Knowing that their mom will be okay helps keep things light and upbeat around the home. As a bonus, you would have opened communication channels regarding their health and personal struggles, if any, in the future.
It’s most likely that your children noticed you dealing with weight-related effects. It would be best if you took the initiative to share the topic. Start by relating it to past measures you’ve taken to manage your weight, such as exercise, diets, and support groups, if any. Reassure them that the operation was to make their mom better, which is a positive to them.