Obesity is something that puts on not physical harm but also immense mental pressure on the patients. Bariatric patients undergo a lot of psychological before, after, and during the curing process. Although bariatric surgery is the most effective treatment in case a patient is going through severe obesity, psychological help is what the person seeks be it knowingly or unknowingly.
Mental health is something that should never be ignored whatever the situation may be. And obese patients face several kinds of hardships mentally. Thus, bariatric psychologists are much needed for these people. Bariatric psychologists are the ones who keep the mental health of obese people in check.
They take care of the pre-surgery and post-surgery. After a patient goes through bariatric surgery, that person comes face to face to some situations that may not be really easy to stand. The psychologists make sure the patient heals psychologically also while recovering from the sickness physically.
Before assessing a bariatric psychologist’s job, let’s talk about the psychological health of the patients –
According to studies, obese people often face psychological complex. From mood disorders, to eating behavior disorders anything can distress them. the worst thing is, most of the patients do not even realize how bad the condition of their mental health is. The disorders include anxiety, low self-esteem, personality disorder, and even choosing alcohol as a self-decided medicine.
Thus, the patients must be made to go through psychological screening before going for bariatric surgery. This is a must as surgery may leave a huge mark on their mental health and the people surrounding the person would not even see it. There is a relationship between obesity and mental health as the latter gets hampered by the former. Therefore, getting the best help from a learned person can never be a wrong move.
So, what exactly is a bariatric psychologist’s job?
There are obese persons who cannot even walk up to twenty steps without getting worn out. people can ask sometimes, “why you not just go to the gym like others?” well, this is not at all easy. Obesity is a sickness like any other disease. And it needs to be cured with proper medication. The surgery remains the best and major one of the treatments.
Therefore, going through the whole process definitely requires a lot of courage and mental stability. Reportedly, the number of psychologists specialized in bariatric surgery is limited and most of the time, the hospitals simply refer to non-specialized psychologists.
However, a bariatric psychologist is a part of the team which includes the surgeons, nurses, physician assistants, and nutritionists. They work as a team to cure an obese person and provide him or her with a normal life like any of us. A psychologists responsibility includes –
- Gathering information on the person’s mental health history.
- If the person has any symptoms like an eating disorder.
- Making sure any kind of cognitive deficits, stress, or behavioural issues do not stop the person from sticking to post-surgery routine changes.
- Helping the patient understand why adhering to the doctors’ prescription is necessary.
- Assessing how much social support the person gets.
- Preparing the person for the best and worst mental conditions.
Furthermore, there are patients who get unsure when it comes to taking a decision if they should go for bariatric surgery. Psychologists are the ones who pour positivity into their minds. They prepare them mentally which makes the patients understand how bariatric surgeries are completely harmless and will only help them live a healthy life.
Bariatric psychologists as a backbone for obese patients…
- Psychologists hold the patients’ backs so they can get stronger mentally. Even when deciding if the patient needs surgery and if he or she is ready or not, the psychologists help them understand how the treatment is going to help them in the long run.
- Even the patients who over-eat are prescribed to let go of the habit. As it can be very hard for them, the psychologists make them go through what the future may behold if they keep on eating more than necessary.
- The Post-surgery phase is another period that needs to the looked after by known doctors. Bariatric psychologists study the whole treatment process in detail and they know how to keep the patients motivated to carry on with the prescribed diet.
While concluding, the discussion as to how important psychologists are, you must know what role they play in curing bariatric patients. A bariatric psychologist plays the part of a support system that helps the patient recover in the finest possible way. Basically, they are the cheerleaders who stand by the patient and upholds their mood time and again during the long process.