Irritable Bowel Syndrome Treatment & IBS Cures

by : terence oth

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is not a disease per se but a functional disorder. Until now, the medical community does not have a definite answer why and how it happens but I have my own theory, not from a qualified medical perspective but from a sufferer's perspective. I think that the most important thing to know is that IBS is not terminal. The effects from IBS symptoms are what cause us (IBS sufferers) all the pain, discomfort and suffering.

On a bigger perspective, it is estimated that IBS affects about 30% of the world's population. It can range from mild and infrequent attacks, to more severe hospital care. This percentage is expected to increase with all the processed foods and increasingly unhealthy lifestyle among humans.

At present, IBS is diagnosed via test elimination and symptom guideline called "Rome III Diagnostic Criteria" (some of these guidelines defer) but generally, if you have suffered

"Stomach discomfort or abdominal pain 3 days in a month for the last 3 to 4 months and this is relieved by having bowel movements. There is also noticeable change in stool form and frequency"

Before one can conclude one has IBS, it is best to get an endoscopy and colonscopy, and other tests done especially the H-Pylorii test. Once these are eliminated, and the symptoms persist, then it is likely to be IBS.

In the IBS world, there are generally two classifications - IBS diarrhea (IBS-D) and IBS constipation (IBS-C). Sometimes one can suffer both, and it changes but predominantly a person will suffer on type.

Some other common symptoms are excessive burping, flatulence (usually with bad smell) and extensive bloating. This is common for both IBS-D or IBS-C.

I find that the most pressing issue with IBS sufferers is pain management. I use to control this without giving much thought to long term strategy. This can be defeating because we are just fixing a problem and attempting to learn to manage our IBS. We have to realize that IBS is not going to leave us anytime soon, so a long term perspective is needed.

Over the years, I started to look long term to manage IBS and here is what I have discovered. In order to do that one must look into these 6 strategies and develop plans, routines and knowledge:

&bullRelieve Pain. This has to be the first and most important. In the beginning, this must be the first thing to address. Knowing what to do and what to take which can provide immediate or near immediate pain relief is priority one.
&bullPromote Healing. Once pain is managed, we have to try to take care and promote the healing process. This can be in the form of foods we take and exercises we do.
&bullRemove Symptoms. Even with the best of us, IBS symptoms do flare up. It could be caused by the trigger food we have taken, which is usually the case or some routine that we did not follow. We must then know what to take or do to quickly to nip the symptoms before it becomes too much to handle.
&bullStress Management. I think this is one of the main culprits for an IBS sufferer. In fact, stress is the major cause for most critical diseases. Anyway, we need to how to de-stress because having to deal with IBS is a very tiring and stressful period in itself. Thus, knowing how to calm down mentally and physically is very important to create a 'clear head' in dealing with IBS symptoms.
&bullRemove Toxins (detoxification) Toxins indirectly will aggravate IBS symptoms flare-ups. The more toxins we have in the body, the more severe the symptoms become. If we understand and know how to remove toxins through sweat, breath, urine and bowel movements, then we are in better position to reduce the effects of the symptoms.
&bullHabits. Finally, putting all the 'best routine' that works for you and then doing it everyday diligently requires the routine to become a daily habit. There will be several types of routines one have to develop for different circumstances.

To recap, the main idea I wanted to present here is the holistic strategy needed to finally manage IBS. Even though we recognize that IBS is incurable, we also know that with the right knowledge, one can manage the symptoms and its effects. By managing IBS, an IBS sufferer's life can be as fulfilling as a non-IBS sufferer.