Gastric bypass is the most common bariatric surgery that treats obesity. Patients spend almost 2-5 days in the hospital if complications arise. The nurses monitor you closely when you return to the hospital cabin after having surgery. In this article, you will find how to get a complete recovery after bariatric surgery.
Tips To Follow For Recovering From Bariatric Surgery
Alongside periodic check-up of your important signs – respiration, temperature, pulse, and blood pressure – the nurses will motivate and help you perform leg movement exercises, coughing deep breathing, and the process of getting out of bed. These all functions are only to prevent all kinds of complications.
Sometimes, you can encounter vomiting and nausea, fatigue, light-headedness, surgical pain, sleeplessness, gas pain, loss of appetite, emotional ups and downs, and loose stools in the early weeks after this surgery. You can discuss every issue you experience with your physician and nurse.
During surgery, you may feel shoulder and neck pain. However, the doctors take care of your comfort. To keep your pain under control, they try hard to help you in recovering from gastric bypass surgery. If you feel comfortable, you are capable of walking, coughing, and deep breathing. All of these are vital for recovering from bariatric surgery. In case you feel pain after surgery, the doctors apply PCA or patient-controlled analgesia that controls your pain. They often give you pain medicine which is safe as these are used for a particular medical purpose like surgery.
The doctors care about your progress. So be in touch with them to make sure to get a speedy recovery after bariatric surgery. After 10 days to 3 weeks of your surgery, you can schedule an appointment with your surgeon. You will get this instruction while getting a discharge from the hospital. After doing the initial follow-up visit, you will need to visit the surgeon periodically – generally 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, and 9 months after the surgery. After that, you can schedule a yearly appointment. Try to inform your primary doctor of your progress. Make sure to contact him/her with every medical need also.
Avoiding some activities
You need to avoid all exhausting activities for at least 3-6 weeks after surgery. Avoid strenuous activities like pushing, lifting or carrying heavy loads for the first 3 months after this surgery. Don’t lift anything bulkier than 20-30lbs or don’t pull or push motions like vacuuming, amid the first 6 weeks after surgery. Don’t stand or sit without shifting for long periods. While sitting or walking, you must change your positions in place of standing still for a long. These tricks will prevent blood clots from creating in your legs. You can climb stairs for better results.
Caring for your wounds
You must take care of your wounds. You may find some tapes on your wound. You must remove the tapes if surgical staples were used. This doesn’t cause any pain. You should keep your wound clean and dry to experience quick healing. Shower it and wash with soap, rinse and make it dry properly. You can cover it using a light dressing if it is catching or oozing on clothing. Otherwise, keep it open to air if possible as it helps prevent infection. In spite of the best care, any wound can get infections. If you notice any symptom of infection, inform your surgeon right away. Don’t use any ointment if your doctor doesn’t prescribe you.
Exercising for a speedy recovery from bariatric surgery
Activities like daily walking and changing sitting or standing positions help promote blood circulation. Proper blood flow releases the creation of blood clots and speeds up healing. Walking, standing up and doing exercises after the operation will help you in lowering complications and recovering from gastric bypass surgery.
Once every hour after surgery, repeat the following exercises. It’s a better concept to practice all of them prior to surgery also, for increasing agility and lung functions.
- The 1st night after surgery, you should stand at your bedside, sit up, and dangle your feet with the help of your physical therapist or nurse. The process may be painful but will be easier after practice. You will observe your strength returning and pain reduction every day.
- The first day after surgery, you will be asked to get out of your bed and walk at least 3 times every day. Performing all breathing and leg exercises is mandatory. You may feel difficult to go for a walk initially, but it’s vital to try your best as much as possible.
- The physical therapist or nurse will help you learn the ways of breathing deeply and coughing. They will showcase the using process of an incentive spirometer which helps maximize lungs. Deep breathing and coughing will loosen every secretion which may be in your lungs or throats and will prevent pneumonia as well. It also maximizes blood circulation and reduces anesthesia.
- To breathe deeply:
- Deeply inhale as much as possible.
- Hold your breath for almost 2 seconds.
- After that, exhale totally.
- Repeat the process at least 3 times.
- To cough properly:
- Deeply inhale.
- A cough must not come from your threat but not from your abdomen. Put a pillow on your abdomen to get support.
- To work out your legs and feet:
- Toward the end of your bed, push your toes like you are pressing down something.
- Toward the head of your bed, pull your toes and relax.
- Circle your ankle at first to the right and then to the left.
- Repeat the aforementioned procedure at least 3 times.
You Need A Lifelong Commitment!
Bariatric surgery is just a physical tool to shed your extra pounds but you should be committed to making emotional and mental changes for long-lasting weight loss process. You should take supplements and vitamins after surgery for recovering from bariatric surgery. Manage your food and maintain workouts for the rest of your life.