When many people think about irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) constipation is the first thing that comes to mind.
However, diarrhea is also associated with the disease. In fact, a large percentage of IBS sufferers have regular bouts of diarrhea.
This can vary from frequent bowel movements to very watery loose stool. The most annoying factor is that these symptoms are often unpredictable.
Not only can this be embarrassing but it can also be inconvenient. This is because abdominal pain, discomfort, cramps, gas, and bloating can accompany an IBS episode.
Not only that but nausea and dehydration can occur if an episode of diarrhea lasts too long.
However, there are some natural ways to deal with the diarrhea that can accompany IBS.
Luckily for us today there are a variety of effective and safe treatments to help with diarrhea associated with IBS.
These treatments are usually quite inexpensive and many can be administered without a doctor’s visit.
In fact, a combination of dietary changes, nutritional supplements, and monitored treatment can be life changing for those who suffer from IBS. Let’s take a look at a few simple but helpful remedies.
==> Dietary Changes
The first thing most IBS sufferers should consider is diet. Being mindful about what you eat can go a long way to remedying IBS and diarrhea.
While they may not completely cure your IBS, they most certainly will help reduce the frequency and severity of attacks.
It’s always advisable to incorporate as many leafy greens into your diet as you can. These greens are rich in Vitamin A which is a natural anti-diuretic and digestive aid. You should also keep a food diet.
In that diary record how you feel after eating certain foods. You may be able to quickly determine which foods cause diarrhea or IBS reactions and which one’s don’t.
If you notice a pattern, then avoid that food for a while to see if you notice a difference. In general, it’s a good idea to avoid oily and spicy foods, as they are known bowel irritants.
Additionally, lowering the amount of refined sugar can also help deter diarrheaepisodes. This means foods rich in chocolate, alcohol, and caffeine should be limited.
This is because sugary foods act as laxatives within your body, and if your stomach is already sensitive, they can actually worsen the situation.
You may also want to consider talking to your doctor about possible lactose intolerance. This is another common cause of IBS and diarrhea in many people.
==> Over The Counter Remedies
There are a variety of over the counter antidiarrheal medicines that are both safe and effective. These medicines are great for short term use for IBS sufferers. In general, there are three categories of over the counter antidiarrheals.
These contain a natural mixture of pectin and clay. This combination thickens the stool and works to absorb and move harmful toxins from the body.
These are medicines that alleviate intestinal spasms. The easy pain and stress on the intestinal walls and can lessen the pain associated with IBS and diarrhea.
In general antidiarrheal medications can work wonders.
However, they may not always help with most bloating and severe abdominal pains. Also, there can be some side-effects associated with taking these OTC drugs. This can include dry mouth, constipation, and fatigue.
If you are taking OTC antidiarrheal meds and notice any side effects, please consult your doctor right away. You want to make sure to not use an antidiarrheal until 24hrs after first experiencing diarrhea.
This is because diarrhea is your body’s natural way of expelling harmful bacteria and toxins.
If you are experiencing diarrhea because of food poisoning or infection, you want to give your natural responses enough time to get rid of the irritants.
==> Prescription Antidiarrheal Medications
Some doctors prescribe low doses of anti-depressants to help with the abdominal pain caused by IBS and diarrhea.
That is because these meds effectively block pain signals to the brain and are easy on the stomach lining. Your doctor may also consider prescribing other medications.
This includes substances that are designed to block the effects of certain biochemical on the digestive system.
This soothes the colon and slows down bowel movements. This can help alleviate thesense of urgency and even pain that can occur with IBS and diarrhea. Most of these drugs are safe and effective with very few side effects, if any.
Again, if you are suffering from a severe bout of diarrhea associated with IBS, see your doctor as soon as possible. He or she has a wide variety of medications that can help you feel much better.
==> Alternative Medicine
If you are interested, you can try some alternative therapies for your diarrhea. These include acupuncture, herbals, and probiotics. These have all shown great promise in relieving diarrhea and other symptoms of IBS.
These therapies work by assisting the bodies natural processes against disease. This occurs with either direct stimulation of the body, promoting healthy gut bacteria, or soothing naturally occurring chemicals.
No matter which alternative treatment you chose, please first consult with your doctor. If you choose alternative therapy, be sure to only work with fully licensed professionals.
==> Mindfulness Techniques
One of the major triggers of IBS symptoms is stress. Not only can it bring about an episode it can also cause symptoms to worsen.
You can work with a trained behavior specialist to learn techniques to help lessen the effects of stress. This can include Yoga, Meditation, Relaxation Techniques, Hypnotherapy, and even Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.