What Are The Symptoms of IBS

Irritable bowel syndrome is a chronic condition that adversely affects the stomach and intestines and causes painful symptoms like bloating, gas, and diarrhea. While the syndrome is considered a long-term syndrome, symptoms often change over time and under different circumstances, and, with careful strategizing, these symptoms can often be successfully managed for the duration.

The precise cause of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is unknown, though there are many hypotheses in medical communities and among the general public. Symptoms of IBS vary from person to person and affect some people more dramatically than others. It’s common for symptoms of IBS to worsen during times of stress or when certain foods or drinks are ingested. In many cases, a bowel movement will relieve symptoms of IBS, though many people with IBS report constipation as a symptom, so this might be a challenge.

Commonly reported symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome include pain and cramping in the abdomen, often accompanied by bloating and gas; in many cases, these symptoms are relieved by moving one’s bowels. Excessive gas is another common symptom of IBS, and you may also experience diarrhea or constipation, or even both of these things. Less frequently, patients might experience symptoms like excessive fatigue or lack of energy, heartburn, or a general feeling of illness. Of course, any of these symptoms can take their toll and negatively affect a person’s overall quality of life.

If you think you have irritable bowel syndrome, visit your general practitioner. If you’re experiencing stress or anxiety and you’ve had issues with IBS in the past, it’s not a bad idea to visit your doctor early on, before the situation worsens; sometimes, symptoms of IBS can cause stress or anxiety on their own, so everything gets worse when there are other stressors to consider. Your doctor might take blood tests and stool samples to rule out any serious conditions before recommending stress-management therapies, counseling, or other methods of managing IBS. Be sure to tell your doctor if you’ve had any long-lasting changes in your bowel movements, unexplained weight loss, or rectal bleeding, as these can be the signs of more serious conditions and require timely attention.

When other conditions have been ruled out, you’ll work with your doctor to manage your symptoms. It can be helpful to maintain a healthy diet that includes plenty of vegetables and fiber and to drink lots of water, and exercise and stress-management can also aid in reducing symptoms of IBS. In many people, caffeine, alcohol, and fatty foods can trigger symptoms of IBS, and behavior modification techniques can help patients introduce a more balanced, less inflammatory diet. Psychological treatments have been shown to be helpful in many cases, especially when stress is a trigger, and medication might be prescribed when clinical conditions warrant it and other approaches prove ineffective. While IBS doesn’t lead to colorectal cancers or cause any permanent physical damage, it can really take its toll on quality of life, and proper management can make a world of difference in the long term. Even small changes could help immensely, so don’t be afraid to ask your doctor for help as you’re learning how to manage IBS and its uncomfortable symptoms.

Do I Have Irritable Bowel Syndrome