Are you worried about your growing weight? Have you tried everything, and nothing seems to work? So, you’ve heard about Bariatrics and are looking into how things work with bariatrics and weight management. The first step is to know about the experts that work with you on your journey to a sustainable weight and healthy lifestyle.
What is Bariatrics? Which Specialists work in the Bariatrics & Metabolic Disease Department?
Bariatrics is a medical term used for the treatment of obesity and its associated diseases and complications. Obesity has a multi-dimensional effect on your body, and you need a team of specialists if you want to fight it and come out victorious! At Doral Health & Wellness’s Bariatric & Metabolic Diseases Department, we have a team of Board-Certified Doctors and Health care providers at your service:
- Bariatrics Doctors
- Bariatrics Surgeons
- Bariatrics Nurses
- Nutrition Experts
- Exercise Coaches/ Physiotherapists
Let’s take a look at their roles.
1. Bariatrician: A bariatric doctor/Bariatrician treats your obesity by examining your weight, considering your overall health, and then planning your treatment with a weight management diet, exercise, or medication. These doctors don’t do surgeries or counseling. If the patients have any psychological or physical problems, they recommend another specialist in this field.
Role: Examine your health and recommend the right treatment plan according to the associated complications.
- Conduct a thorough medical exam to find out the root cause of your weight gain.
- Plan a treatment tailored to your body needs keeping in mind your body needs and health conditions.
2. Bariatrics Surgeons: A bariatric surgeon is the one who performs weight loss surgery on you. Obesity is measured by a simple weight upon height index called Body Mass Index (BMI). Your Body Mass Index (BMI) must be over 35 with severe health disorders (related to obesity) for you to qualify for weight reduction surgery. Bariatric surgery alters your stomach or intestines (either the anatomy or the absorption capacity is altered). After the surgery, the surgeon guides you through the recovery phase.
- Perform the weight reduction surgery and monitor you till you are discharged from the hospital.
- Make guidelines for you to follow after your surgery to heal properly (without any complications).
3. Bariatrics Nurses: A bariatrics nurse is a nurse with extensive training in bariatrics patient care. Their main duties are- to assist you before and after surgery, counsel you about healthy eating habits and nutrition choices, and monitor your progress on your weight loss journey.
- Take care of you -every step of the way.
- Make records of your vitals and weight on every appointment
- Monitor your progress and report to the bariatrician so that the treatment can be modified if the expected results are not seen in the estimated time.
- Help you with any issues, concerns, and doubts during treatment.
- Monitor you after surgery till you are good to go from the hospital.
- Responsible for your follow-up appointments.
4. Endocrinologists: They are specially trained doctors who diagnose and manage diseases of your glands and hormones. They examine the hormonal changes in the body and assess any metabolic diseases that you may have due to obesity. They provide consultation and treatment for diseases of your metabolism, and hormonal imbalances (like thyroid hormone). They are an important part of Bariatrics as obesity can lead to Diabetes, Hormonal issues, and Problems with your metabolism.
- Do a thorough exam of your hormonal health
- Help diagnose and treat hormonal disorders associated with Obesity- like Diabetes, Thyroid problems, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), and fertility issues.
- Work with nutritionists and dieticians to help design your diet and lifestyle for a smooth weight loss journey.
- Manage hormonal imbalances and Diabetes after the Surgery.
5. Nutrition Experts: A nutrition expert/nutritionist is the one who makes a detailed list of every calorie that you consume and charts your nutritional needs. They are different from Dieticians. You will get a nutrition chart after your surgery and your nutritionist will work closely with your physiotherapy trainer after the weight loss procedure to make sure you maintain a sustainable weight and a healthy nutrition quotient after surgery.
- Make a nutritional chart for your body
- List the supplements you would need to take (after surgery)
- Work with the registered dietician in deciding a meal plan for you after surgery
- Work with your physiotherapist to plan a supplement routine for you as per your exercise regime
6. Dietitian: A Registered Dietitian makes a diet plan for you throughout your bariatric journey. This includes the type of diet you need in various stages of your weight loss journey. A healthy diet plays a particularly vital role in your health. Dieticians work in close association with nutritionists to make a diet plan for you based on the needs of your body.
- Make a list of your diet and previous weight loss attempts
- Understanding your dietary patterns and nutritional requirements
- Taking a detailed history of supplements used (weight loss supplements/nutritional supplements)
- A history of your exercise routine
- Make a detailed diet plan based on your requirements
- Assist the post-operative weight management
7. Psychologists in Bariatrics: A Bariatric psychologist helps you understand your bariatric journey and how to deal with it. It affects your attitude towards the treatment and your readiness to make any changes necessary to get through obesity and its diseases and take a step towards healthy lifestyle habits.
- Take a mental health history and any symptoms of psychological issues, such as disordered eating.
- They check if there are issues like cognitive deficits, behavioral issues or stressors that might keep you from adhering to lifestyle changes.
- They also assess your social support network.
- Educate you about the process.
- Provide feedback to the physicians for designing your treatment plan.
- They provide Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to help you manage any psychological issues associated with your weight and self-image.
8. Physical Therapists: Physiotherapists/Physical therapists usually work with people affected by injury, illness, or disability. They provide support through movement and exercise, manual therapy, education, and advice programs. In Bariatrics, Physical therapy helps people with morbid obesity to go about their weight loss journey with a specific exercise and physical therapy regime for every step of the program. (For example, your exercise routine may change before and after bariatric surgery).
- Make an exercise plan based on your weight
- Provide therapies like- anti-gravity treadmills, balance training, exercises to improve strength and flexibility, and aerobics according to your fitness level.
- Work with the nutritionist and registered dieticians to make a complete lifestyle plan suited for your needs.
Let’s celebrate successes together, whether achieving a goal weight or making healthy food choices!