The concept of a support group tends to have a polarizing effect among patients. Some are eager to attend, others think of excuses not to go. Unfortunately, for bariatric patients, not attending a support group may contribute to a less-than-favorable outcome. Your “before” and “after” lifestyle will be drastically different, and you’ll need the support of other people who are going through similar challenges. You might be surprised to find out just how much you can get out of your support group.
Ask for advice before having the surgery.
You don’t have to wait to attend a support group until after you’ve had gastric bypass surgery. Once you’ve scheduled the procedure, it’s normal to experience fleeting doubts. You might wonder whether you’ve made the right decision, or whether you’ll be able to succeed with your post-operative life. The other patients at the group session have been in your shoes, and they understand what you’re going through. Within this nonjudgmental setting, there are no silly questions or concerns. You should feel free to ask questions you wouldn’t ask your surgeon, such as where to find high-quality consignment clothes to fit your changing body.
Get post-surgical guidance from experienced patients.
All medical questions and concerns after your surgery should be directed to your bariatric surgeon, but you can turn to your support group for other forms of obesity help. These groups often have a theme or structured agenda for each meeting. Some groups may feature healthy cooking demonstrations, for instance. Post-surgical education is vital for your long-term success.
Be motivated to continue with your new lifestyle.
Bariatric patients are often the most motivated to stick to their diet and exercise program during the first year or two. After this point, it can be easy to relapse back into old, unhealthy habits. It is entirely possible, and fairly common, to regain weight after surgery. Attending a support group can help you find the motivation to get back on track.
Bariatric Care Centers strongly encourages our pre-and post-bariatric surgery patients in Houston to attend our free support groups. Except on holiday weekends, the group meets on the third Saturday of each month. Give us a call at 713-339-1353 if you have any questions.
Disclaimer: This is only for general information. All patients should consult their doctors prior to following any of the recommendations in any articles and videos. Every patient has individual needs and limitations that only their treating physicians can be aware of.