The long process of food ingestion, digestion and elimination is made possible by the gastrointestinal tract. The GI tract starts from the mouth which is responsible for mechanical food breakdown down to the anus which makes stool elimination possible. Normal functioning GI (gastrointestinal) tract usually eliminates stool that is not too hard or too soft in consistency. However, because of factors such as stress, genetics, exposure to chemicals and excessive bacterial growth, stool consistency can change. These changes are often associated with Irritable bowel syndrome. However, you need to clearly understand what IBS is and the cure for IBS, if there are any, for you to determine if your stool consistency changes are associated with it or not.
What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Contrary to how it may sound, irritable bowel syndrome or IBS is not a life-threatening condition. It is not even a disorder itself but it is a group of symptoms of the gastrointestinal tract. The exact cause of the condition is usually unknown. However, there are certain risk factors associated with it which includes mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety, alterations in chemical and enzyme production and genetic causes.
IBS can be classified based on the stool consistency and the number of months it has been occurring. Treatment options usually depend on the classification of the condition.
Signs and symptoms of IBS
As mentioned earlier, IBS is a group of symptoms. The following are common signs and symptoms felt by patients having IBS.
- Abdominal pain and cramping with unknown cause.
- Changes in bowel movement.
- Changes in stool consistency such as diarrhea and constipation.
- Having a bloated feeling.
- Decreased in appetite.
Individuals often associate IBS with diarrhea and constipation. However, you should know that not all conditions with stool consistency changes are diagnosed as IBS. Some conditions such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis also have symptoms of diarrhea and constipation while another disorder known as dysentery is also characterized by diarrhea.
Is there a cure for IBS?
Irritable bowel syndrome, as said by many experts and health professionals, is not really curable. Once you have the disorder, you would not be able to eliminate it. However, there are certain methods that you can do to control its symptoms and improve your gastric functioning. Although it cannot be completely eradicated, many, if not all of its symptoms can be treated.
Several researchers and scientists throughout the world are still looking for helpful ways to cure IBS. As a result, natural products and supplements have been formulated to manage the condition and these have been showing high levels of success and efficiency. However, before taking in any un-prescribed drug or medication, it is important to consult your physician to avoid complications.
Treatment and cure for IBS
The following are effective means of treating IBS as claimed by health experts and patients.
- Avoid large meals and spicy foods as they are highly irritating.
- Increase fiber intake to cleanse the gastrointestinal tract.
- Avoid underlying risks such as stress and anxiety-inducing situations.
- Take foods and products with high probiotics or good bacteria.
- Consistently take medications as prescribed by your physician.