How long do I have to wait to have sex after bariatric surgery?
Like all surgeries, the recovery period is very individual…as is the time to resume sex after bariatric surgery. If the bariatric surgery was performed “open” as opposed to laparoscopically the recovery time will take a little longer. Patients are advised to listen their doctors as well their bodies. Some patients are able to resume their sex life within a week to ten days and some take many weeks, even months. The “rule of thumb” for sex as well as other physical activities; if the patient is not experiencing pain or discomfort there is no reason to abstain. However if a patient feels uncomfortable during sex or other strenuous physical activities, have them wait a bit longer before they try again.
Most patients do report an increase in libido and improved sex life after weight-loss, and weight-loss also improves fertility for many men and women. Needless to say, improved fertility, and increased libido/sexual frequency requires careful attention to birth control.
For both the health of the developing fetus as well as the mother, pregnancy post-surgery is best deferred until the weight-loss stops and the mother’s weight stabilizes.
It should be noted that for those patients with minimal sexual experience or for couples that have had long interrupted sex lives, shyness, shame, body image dissatisfaction are realities and prudent bariatric counseling is essential.