1.What is IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)?
Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a common gastrointestinal problem that is characterised by the symptoms like pain in the abdominal area, cramps, increased gas, bloating and food intolerance. The exact cause is unknown as it can be caused by various factors. It is also known as the functional bowel disease, mucous colitis, or nervous colon.
The symptoms can have a negative impact on the sufferer, so proper treatment is important in order to avoid that effect. IBS can be observed in 10-20% of the population worldwide.
The IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) symptoms can vary from individual to individual depending on their age. It can be most commonly characterised by the pain in abdomen and cramps. Other IBS symptoms include the following –
- Diarrhea or loose stools
- Problem of gas
- Swelling in the abdominal area
- Pain in the abdominal area
- Slight pain or cramps after eating something
- Nausea or dizziness
- Sudden weight loss
- Not feeling like to eat or loss of appetite
Approximately 70% of the people who face IBS also have an issue of indigestion. Women may face more symptoms of IBS during the menstrual period.
IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) Causes
The exact IBS cause is unknown. It can be caused due to a number of factors.
- Too fast or too slow, i.e. abnormal movements in the colon and small intestine.
- Hypersensitivity from the gas.
- Psychological problems like depression, anxiety, stress, etc., can contribute to these problems.
- Infection in the stomach can trigger the IBS symptoms.
- Genetic causes can be there, but it is still not proven.
- Imbalance in the reproductive hormones.
Types of IBS
There are 2 types of IBS, i.e., IBS – D and IBS – C
- IBS – D (Irritation Bowel Syndrome – Diarrhea)
Here are the symptoms of the following –
Frequent stools, nausea, gas, abdominal pain, discomfort, loose stools, etc.
- IBS – C (Irritation Bowel Syndrome – Constipation)
Infrequent stools, abdominal pain, nausea, bloating, gas, straining during bowel movements, etc
2.How is IBS diagnosed?
IBS can be diagnosed by the help of symptoms. The entire medical history of the patient should be taken into consideration and the symptoms should be effectively diagnosed. The duration of the symptoms should be at least 6 months and it should have occurred or shown at least 3 times in a month. The doctor should conduct the IBS test like a stool test, blood test, and X-Ray. This way IBS diagnosis can be done properly.
3.How is IBS treated?
IBS treatment is done on the basis of the type that you have been infected with.
- Firstly the dietary modifications are done. All the things or food that trigger the symptoms of the IBS should be avoided. So, diet should be modified first.
- Also, the changes should be made in the lifestyle and the doctor may recommend medical therapies.
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4.How can IBS be prevented?
IBS prevention can be done through a number of ways which are very simple in nature, like –
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle and take a proper diet in order to manage the symptoms.
- Avoid the food that triggers the symptoms of IBS.
- Pay proper attention to the mental issues like anxiety and depression. Manage them properly and go for therapy if needed.
- Manage the stress properly. You can also go for various relaxation techniques.
- Avoid the intake of caffeine.
- Go for mindfulness training if needed.
- If you feel any indigestion problems, try to cure it as soon as possible. Try ginger and peppermint for it.
- Use the pain management techniques.
If you feel it is getting worse, consult a gastroenterologist immediately. Also, do not take any medications without consulting a doctor.