Understanding irritable bowel syndrome.
Irritable bowel syndrome affects the large intestine. This can cause bloating, changes in bowel movements as well as abdominal cramping. This can cause a lot of discomfort but it may not cause any harm to the intestines. This disorder tends to affect women more than men. The exact cause is also unknown although there are some factors that can propagate these symptoms. The people who are diagnosed with such can have their symptoms controlled in a number of ways such as using medicine, managing stress, and using the correct diet. Treatment of irritable bowel syndrome is possible when a patient understand the factors that cause it.
Irritable bowel syndrome is common in people who have had a family history with the disease, people who have undergone such physical trauma such as sexual abuse as well as people that have psychological conditions such as panic disorder. Others with conditions such as fibromyalgia and migraine headaches can also be at risk. This may cause them to have soft-tissue pain as well as tiredness.
Unlike the ochre intestinal diseases such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome does not case changes in the bowel tissue. It also does not cause inflammation as well as increasing the risk of colorectal cancer.
Symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) has a number of symptoms. The symptoms are classified according to the Rome III criteria. This makes it possible to distinguish it from other symptoms such as those of intestinal problems that could easily be confused with this.
The Rome III criteria is usually used if the symptoms were visible for more than six months. It is also used when a patient has abdominal pain as well as discomfort that occur for three days for each month in the past three months.
Some of the factors that should accompany these symptoms are that the pain should have some linkage to the consistency or appearance of the stool, is relieved when there is a bowel movement or when it is linked to the frequency of having bowel movements. Some patients also suffer other symptoms such as having some mild constipation but with no diarrhea. They may also have passage of mucus in the stools as well as intestinal gas. Some none gastrointestinal symptoms are also experienced such as headache, backache, unpleasant taste in mouth, palpitations of the heart, anxiety, and fatigue. Other symptoms are urinary problems that are exhibited by an urgent desire to urinate as well as having pain during sex.
Treatment of irritable bowel syndrome
This is a serious condition but it is quite manageable. Tests should however be done first to determine a number of factors. This may include conducting physical examinations as well as understanding the medical history of the patient. Stool analysis is also required to test for infection or parasites in the stool. This includes tests such as stool culture and fecal occult blood test. A test for celiac disease also needs to be done. Complete blood count is also an important aspect that provides information about the white blood cells and the red blood cells in the body. This also checks for the platelets that exist in the blood. They give an idea about the rate of sedimentation. This test is appropriate since it provide a check for the inflammation that exists within the body of the patient that is being diagnosed. The treatment also varies according to the symptoms faced as well as how sever they are. A doctor can best describe the treatment plan for a patient. However, it is always necessary to adopt a lifestyle that that deals with the symptoms in a proper manner.
Some foods may trigger these symptoms hence they should be avoided. Some of these foods are fatty diets, alcohol, and caffeine. Constipation can be relieved by increasing the fiber intake in the diet. Diarrhea can be reduced by limiting the intake of artificial sweeteners as well as diary products. Boating can be relieved by limiting foods such as cabbage broccoli, uncooked cauliflower as well as beans.
It is also important to have exercise in regular periods. Exercise helps to reduce the tension of the bowels and to ensure that the bowel movement is more regular. This can be done by jogging, swimming, or even talking a walk. Stress can also be another cause hence methods should be undertaken to reduce the stress. This can be done by having stress management procedures as well as therapy. This helps a patient to appropriately deal with stressful issues while at the same time prevent such occurrences.
Medicines can also be prescribed by a doctor. Such medicines include antidepressants for those who are undergoing depressing moments, drugs for antianxiety, medicines that fight constipation and diarrhea as well as drugs for cramping such as anticholinergic. Treatment should therefore be ongoing since it is usually long-term. A good relationship needs to be maintained with the doctor to ensure that he can properly and constantly monitor the improvements being made by your body.
A patient also needs to observe any changes that occur such as unexplained and radical loos in weight, having blood in the stool, having an increased level of pain or even severe fever. In case such symptoms are observed, the doctor needs to be aware so that he may conduct additional tests as required. In case the condition gets worse, additional tests need to be done to determine the actual cause of the problem. It should also be treated on time to ensure that it may not result in more serious conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease or even cancer. To ensure that treatment is effective, there needs to be a combination of all the treatment methods. This is because it results in a combination of all the factors hence they all need to be addressed. Thus, the doctor needs to ensure that he treats the diarrhea or constipation with the right medicine. They also need to advice the patient to have lifestyle changes. Psychological therapy and stress management also needs to be addressed in this case. When all these steps are taken into consideration, then treatment for irritable bowel syndrome will be a smooth task.