Bariatric surgeries, such as a gastric bypass, offer physical solutions to the problems of overeating and obesity. These surgeries work by altering a patient's digestive tract, limiting the amount of food it can hold or the nutrients it absorbs. As a result, patients can dramatically reduce their caloric intake without feeling hungry. But bariatric surgery alone doesn't always guarantee results. Physical therapy following surgery provides the following benefits that may improve your long-term outcome.

Monitoring Recovery Progress

Any surgery that changes the way your body functions carries some risk. While most bariatric surgeries are safe, they can spark side effects like nausea, heartburn, or blood sugar issues. In more serious cases, infections and blockages can occur and require immediate treatment. Working with a hospital for special surgery rehab gives you regular access to medical professionals who will help you recognize and manage any side effects as they pop up.

Promoting Safe Weight Loss

Bariatric surgery is typically used when regular dieting and exercise have failed to control a patient's weight. Because the average patient tends to be obese, recovery brings unique challenges as well. As you lose weight, your body must adapt. Your lungs, for example, need to stretch and expand following surgery to reduce the risk of blood clots or pneumonia. At the same time, too much intense exercise can cause joint or stress injuries. A rehabilitation clinic will work with your unique needs to set you on the best path toward recovery. 

Transitioning to an Active Lifestyle

Once the initial surgical site has healed, you can begin pairing your surgical results with a healthy diet and exercise. But as mentioned before, launching into intense exercise can lead to injuries or burnout instead of sustained weight loss. Start slowly and let your body gain strength naturally. A physical therapist might, for example, have you begin with stretches and long walks before moving on to jogging or weight lifting.  

Building Strong Future Habits

The long-term success of bariatric surgery ultimately comes down to the habits and determination of each patient. If you set your mind to eating right and exercising, you're likely to see better results than someone who changes nothing about their lifestyle. Attending a post-surgical rehabilitation clinic provides structure and accountability in the early days following the procedure. With the right encouragement, advice, and medical attention, you can transform your life and body and develop healthy habits to last a lifetime.