Thousands of individuals have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). This condition has symptoms that include:
This health issue typically begins during adolescence, but it may develop later in life. In some cases, children have IBS, making it difficult for them to get enough nutrients from foods. The pain after eating and during bowel movements can make an individual avoid consuming many types of foods, causing nutritional deficiencies.
Experts have determined that there are four types of irritable bowel syndrome, and a diagnosis is made based on the patient’s medical history. These four types of irritable bowel syndrome include:
• Having diarrhea with IBS
• Having constipation with IBS
• Having both constipation and diarrhea with IBS
• Having neither diarrhea or constipation with IBS
While a patient may begin by visiting their primary physician for the painful symptoms from this health problem, it is important to visit a specialist like Rebecca Hunton, MD, who has an understanding of gastrointestinal disorders. Physicians are still trying to understand what causes IBS, and the theories include:
• Food allergies
• Genetic abnormalities
• Defective neurotransmitters
• Bacterial infections
• Oversensitive to pain
• Gut motility disorders
• Another disorder of the stomach or intestinal tract
What Are the Different Treatments for Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
However, there are treatments available from experts who want patients to manage IBS. Here are some of the ways that you can improve the health of your gastrointestinal system to reduce painful symptoms.
Changing Your Daily Diet
Changing your daily diet can help you avoid the problems that are associated with irritable bowel syndrome. Changing to a low-fat diet that has less meat and dairy foods can prevent stomach or intestinal cramping. You should maintain a diary to determine which foods are causing problems. Some of the most common foods to cause problems are cheese that contains lactose or foods such as bread that contains gluten. Some individuals can’t tolerate certain types of sugars such as fructose.
Increasing Your Fiber Intake
Gradually increasing the amount of fiber that you consume can prevent problems from constipation or diarrhea. However, some patients have more problems after increasing their fiber intake.
When you are experiencing pain or other symptoms from irritable bowel syndrome, you can take prescription or store-bought medications. Antacids, stool softeners or other medications can relieve your problems occasionally, but these medications can also disrupt the natural flora in the stomach and intestinal tract.