A WOMAN has revealed that she had a gastric bypass, and although it made her lose weight, she also ended up losing all her teeth too.
33-year-old Cathy, who posts on TikTok under the username @cat_the_selkie, has shared a variety of videos opening up about her dental journey.
Cathy took to the video sharing platform to explain that she never had any issues with her teeth before her weight loss surgery, but following the cosmetic procedure, she started having lots of dental problems.
In the end, after spending thousands of pounds trying to fix her teeth, the young woman was forced to wear a full set of dentures.
Taking to the social media app, she shared a video with the caption ‘Truth’ and said: “You wanna know why I have dentures at the age of 33?”
She explained: “It’s because gastric bypass ruined my natural teeth.
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“I went 24 years of my life without even having a single cavity, I had braces as a teenager, my teeth were white.
“But a few years after my surgery, I started to have lots of cavities out of nowhere.
“I brush my teeth everyday, I take my vitamins every day since my surgery. But problems with my teeth continued.
“I am regularly anaemic and I have low vitamin levels even though I take vitamins and supplements daily.
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“Over the years many people have experienced what I've experienced.
“Sharing my story on TikTok, I've had lots of people tell me that the same thing happened to them after their surgery.
“When I had my surgery in 2011, they weren't admitting or acknowledging that gastric bypass could have a negative effect on your dental health, even if you were doing everything right, like me, things can still go wrong.
“I am a spokesperson and an advocate for young people with dentures and young people that have had to get dentures after bypass surgery, like myself.
“If you choose to remain ignorant and think that nah that's not the reason, i can't do anything to help you i'm sorry, i'm not gonna try and convince you that this is the truth, even though it is.
“I've tried to warn a few people on TikTok but some of them don't believe me and kind of have a nasty attitude about it, probably because they weren't warned by their doctors that it could be a potential side effect.
“I really hope that they don't have the same experience that I've had, I don't wish this on my worst enemy.
“It doesn't surprise me that doctors are not warning people that this could be a negative effect of the surgery.
“[This] surgery is a multi million dollar industry so of course they're gonna continue giving as many people as i can the surgery, without telling them everything that could go wrong.
“I'm not ashamed that I have dentures, I just want to warn others of the potential side effects of gastric bypass.
“Over the last five, six years, I spent roughly $8,000 [£6,669] trying to save my natural teeth, but in the end everything failed and my teeth were still continuing to get worse and worse.
“I kind of wish that I would have just got dentures a few years ago, it would have saved me some money.
“I will continue to advocate for young people with dentures, the negative stigma needs to go.”
Social media users were left stunned at Cathy’s story and were quick to express this in the comments.
One person said: “This is fantastic that you are getting this message out!”
Another added: “I’ve heard of this happening! I am so glad you are sharing this.”
A third commented: “I’m so sorry this happened to you. It really is so common it’s time the world hears the truth so the guilt & shame can be gone!”
Whilst someone else admitted: “SAME!!! I had gastric bypass surgery in 2004. I got dentures almost 4 years ago also after never even having 1 cavity my entire life.”
In another clip, Cathy responded to a comment that read “Young for that teeth?”
She explained: “There is no specific age that someone gets dentures at.
“I should have known on a video where I said spread love, not hate, that I would get a comment like that.
“A lot of you judgemental folks really like to put people down about things without knowing the full story.
“Yes, young people can have dentures, for many, many different reasons.
“I have them because I had health issues that caused me to have dentures and I’m not ashamed of having dentures.”
Several studies have shown that weight loss surgeries, also known as bariatric surgeries, which include gastric bypass, can in some cases, lead to tooth decay.
Acidic levels in the oral cavity, which are known to be one of the postoperative side-effects of bariatric surgery, directly result in dental cavities and tooth erosion.
According to bariatric surgery website Bari Life, many patients who undergo weight loss surgery end up suffering from tooth decay.
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Research suggests that a majority of bariatric patients experienced 'increased dental erosion, increased dental caries, and increased dental hypersensitivity after weight loss surgery.'
It is believed that dental issues occur as a result of 'increased exposure to gastric juices because of vomiting and reflux' following bariatric surgery, while vitamin deficiencies – which are common in the wake of weight loss procedures – have also been blamed.
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