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Dealing With Loose Skin Post WLS

Dealing With Loose Skin Post WLS

There is no doubt that weight loss surgery completely changes lives. People lose weight and get healthy for the first time in their lives after having the procedure and it is a wonderful feeling. If you follow the guidelines after surgery, you will more than likely lose weight relatively quickly. The speed is different for everyone, but overall, the success from the surgery is amazing and you will feel stronger than ever after the procedure.

It is important to remember that sometimes with quick weight loss, there are side effects that come with it. When you lose weight really quickly, it can be difficult for your body to keep up. This can sometimes lead to side effects such as loose skin after weight loss surgery. I can speak from experience that I have a significant amount of loose skin after surgery. I lost 160 pounds after gastric sleeve, gained back close to 100, and have now lost about 55 pounds of that regain after my gastric bypass revision surgery. My body has been through a lot. My loose skin is definitely there, and something that I have had to learn to deal with after the procedure. I do not want to mention this to scare you, but I do think it is a realistic concern that people have after weight loss surgery.

In my head, I have always been a strong believer that I would rather have the loose skin than be almost 400 pounds. I had my first surgery seven years ago and it was definitely something that messed with my confidence for a long time, especially that first year after surgery. However, I have learned over time that I have to learn to accept my body. I have battle wounds from everything that I have been through and I am proud of how far I have come. Although I have significant loose skin and stretch marks, I am so much happier with my body now than I was years ago. It takes a lot of work to learn to love your body, but it is important to remember that weight loss surgery is a journey and you must appreciate every phase. 

For many patients, plastic surgery is in their plan. It was always something that I was certain I wanted to do, but the older I get the more I have realized that I must do what makes me healthy and happy. At this point in my journey, I do not know if I am going to do it. I am truly enjoying the stage that I am in right now and I am learning to embrace my body. We all have imperfections and that is what makes us perfect. I think it is completely acceptable for people to want to have skin removal surgery after bariatric surgery, but at the same time I think it is completely acceptable to choose not to as well. You must do what you are comfortable with and what makes you happy. The unfortunate thing about plastic surgery is that most insurance companies do not cover it. This can make it extremely difficult for some people to have the surgery because it can get really expensive. It is definitely not something that everyone can do and that is alright. 

There are so many positive end exciting things that come with quick weight loss after bariatric surgery, but before you go ahead with the procedure it is critical that you remember that loose skin can be an issue for some people. It has been shown that people who have been overweight longer struggle with more severe loose skin, but it honestly can happen to anyone. Some people swear by lotions and weight training to help with loose skin, but do not hate on yourself if you are struggling with it. There is just sometimes not anything you can do to prevent it. 

I hope that if you are considering weight loss surgery to get healthier, you do not let the fear of loose skin scare you away. Like I said, I would much rather have this loose skin than be almost 400 pounds. I know my body is not perfect, but I am proud of how far I have come and so should you! Focus on the positive and remember that there are options out there if you are really insecure about it. Above all else, love yourself. You are beautiful, even with that loose skin and any other battle wounds you might have. Do not forget the reason why you decided to have this surgery. Do what makes you happy and make sure you are not doing it for anyone else. If you truly do want to have plastic surgery, make sure you find a surgeon that you trust and get a second opinion if needed. I know that for some people they feel like they will not be finished until they get plastics, which is completely alright. You deserve to fully be happy and confident in your skin and I think it is okay that everyone has a different opinion on what that looks like. Just do yourself a favor and do not get too consumed by it, because that will cause even more body image issues that you do not need. Take a minute and appreciate every step of this journey and remember that it is truly a lifelong path you will be on the rest of your life. You are strong! Never stop fighting! 

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