My IBS journey and what I hv learned from my personal experience

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Good afternoon..Here I am writing my IBS journey and what I hv learned through my personal experience.. If  this might help someone in a little manner also, I will feel I did something right.

So I was diagnosed with IBS-predominantly constipation type around 9 months ago.  Before that I had to go through so many tests and antibiotics courses as IBS is a diagnosis of exclusion.So once everything was rued out including my small intestinal biopsy result was non specific, I was given diagnosis of IBS for my symptoms like changing bowel habits between constipation and diarrhea, Bloating, feeling tired and muscle aches and also some unexplained rashes and trouble in concentrating and also couldn't control my anger( Yes that is a symptom)...I believe so many people might be going through the same or more who are suffering from IBS.

Concurrently, I was found severely deficient in vitamin D and vitamin B12 and also had moderate gastritis....So I was started on supplements...after which I felt GReat....But to my surprise I noticed that now I can not tolerate gluten...I was tested for gluten sensitivity also but the test came negative but somehow My intestine can not tolerate wheat and as soon as I eat Wheat I feel bloated and I hv to go to toilet to relieve my bloating...So At the time of my diagnosis I had those symptoms every day....But now I get it once in a few months...It has reduced significantly.....Now I will let you kw how...

So, First of all Thanks to my doctor who didn't even treat my symptoms of IBS but he also focused on treating me as a whole...As he was very well aware of the gut mind connection....So my doctor gave me one mild dose of anti depressant and advised me to have some yoga and meditation classes along with IBS treatment....For my constipation he prescribed me ISABGOL...very effective...It helped me a lot in my constipation and I still take it...It is very safe to take...and some anti spasmodic...

Guys, I am a medical student and may be I was overly sensitive towards my illness and the medications I was taking and I knew there is no absolute cure for IBS in allopathy as it was all symptomatic Rx, I decided to go to Ayurvedic doctor....And whatever the medicine I was prescribed by my Ayurvedic doctor, It did wonder for me... I still have 1 year course of those medications left....But I am feeling well now...well I was advised to eat anything I like but I didn't feel good after eating wheat so I still avoid it and try to experiment with my food....

 So few things I have learned through my illness especially IBS and also helped me in my illness;

1. stay happy and keep your mind calm..Do yoga/ meditation...(As there is connection between gut and mind)

2. Antidepressant does help as it contains serotonin which is common chemical in brain and gut.

3.keep your vitamins level in appropriate range.( It helps with the energy)

4. Be mindful what you eat...your body will tell you what it likes and doesn't like you just need to pay attention after eating...If u eat something and after eating feel good and your mood is elevated then that food is good for you and If you feel down after eating certain foods avoid those food...your body doen't like it...you just have to be mindful you will know immediately. I prefer to Eat every 2 hourly that provides me energy to go through the day joyfully.

5. Isabgol is wonderful for relieving constipation. Don't take it during diarrhea episode.

6. Take good care of your gut's healthy bacteria..they are also your family..This is very important for any gut related issue or so many other illnesses... we don't pay much attention to it and take it for granted...but not now...So eat yogurt everyday, if it is not contraindicated like lactose intolerance etc.

7. I am myself a medical student and I do believe in medicines but with my personal experience I hv realized that we are more responsible for betterment of ourselves than our doctors...Stay informed and change your lifestyle...Total lifestyle change is the key.

I am writing this article because when I was in dilemma about my diagnosis, I went through so many forums finding answers and searching for people who was suffering from the same illness...Reading about complains and their solutions gave me relief and I could find my life again ,back on the track...so I think I owe those people who take time to write on these kind of forums and gave us strength...

I wish these things which I have learned through my experience might help those who are in same situation where I was 9 months before.       whatever I have written might seem very simple but believe me It is helping me tremandously...hope that helps you too..biggrin

 

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  • Posted

    Hi Jello, some very interesting reading. I have been through the mill the last 3 years with my IBS D. When I thought I'd cracked it and was almost pain free for 20 months I was so happy and then my latest flare lasted 5 weeks which in the end broke me. Currently on course of anti depressants sertraline, doing meditation and food diary. But it's amazing like you say when I have a flare up I get so irritable and angry yet when my gut is fine I'm a different person. I haven't really thought about the vitamins. Is there anyway way you can tell if your low in the vitamins you describe. Also I'm not a regular eater and now thinking I do not actually eat enough. Could the burning symptom be the acid as the stomach is not getting any substance?

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    • Posted

      Hi Jammy, good to know that you were symptoms free for 20 months..But also feel sorry that you had to go through some tough time after that....which tells me that I should also take care and continue what I am doing right now for years or may be lifetime...Thank you for sharing your experience.biggrin

      About vitamins....Well in my case I got checked my vitamins level...you can always ask your physician to have a look at your vitamins level...As there are some interesting studies which gives you link between vitamin d deficiency and depression and also some gut issues...As vitamin d helps to generate serotonin according to some studies...these are latest researches so it is not in the practice yet but I am sure, as I have seen, many doctors are paying attention on this link...

      Symptomatically, If you are defiecient of certain vitamins, you always feel tired and also have muscle aches or tingling sensations in hands and feet,,also people get difficulty in falling a sleep depending on which vitamin you are defiecient of. I think vitamin d defieciency is pandemic now as our life style has become like that..I am vegetarian so It was easy for me to be deficient in vitamin b12 also...but the best way is to be get checked. There are lots of research on that I would suggest you please read it so you can get better idea.

      well I was also not a regular eater...But as I had conciously change my diet with the help of dietician..with some home remedies ,which can help you to keep your stomach calm and you can have more soft fibers for your stomach...So the diet is the key...For your stomach burning..Can you please elaborate your symptoms in terms the exact location and also the nature of your pain? As sometimes in IBS also we can feel Burning kind of pain and also in gastritis also....

      But one thing I would like to suggest, you can try at home...Take some 2 teaspoons of cummin seeds and soak it into drinking water whole night and first thing in the morning you can warm that water and drink the whole glass or more( strain the water before drinking and take out the cummin seeds) that will help to calm your stomach if that is due to excessive acid secretion...It will take some time..but without any side effects.

       

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    • Posted

      Yes I have a burning type pain across the centre of abdomen which comes and goes but can last hours. Yesterday I ate every 3 hours and was fine. Today I left it around 4 a day half hours between eating and the pain was noticeable. I'm trying different strategies each day. Trying to find a pattern or trigger is like trying to find a needle in a haystack at the moment. I do think know why but I still can't help thinking it's some ulcer or ulcers getting inflamed by the acid.

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    • Posted

      Hi jammy, I am happy that you are eating every 3 hours.

      Well about pain due to hyperacididty/ ulcer.It is usually constant and quite related to food...before eating or after eating depending on location...do you get pain after eating particular things? do you feel bloated with the pain? Is it particular food which is initiating it?

      Well for gastritis due to hyperacidity if you take over the counter antacids like Omeprazole(20mg) (proton pump inhibitor)that might help...you can try it for 1 month and observe...it should be taken half an hour before meal once a day.. If it doesn't help then the pain might be due to some another reason... and about ulcer it might relieve symptoms for a while...but we cannot tell if it is ulcer or not without looking it in diagnostic study...     let me know what do you think..biggrin

       

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    • Posted

      The burning pain is very inconsistent. The only consistency is that the pain lapses over night and into the morning. It can then come on anytime during the day and either stays for hours or comes and goes. I get bloated after eating with pain under the ribs. I've also noticed it hurts more when sitting.

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    • Posted

      Hi jammy...Well by your description I don't think it is related to hyperacidity/stomach issue...The pain I think is due to ibs only....as I used to feel the same...after eating I used to feel burning pain under my rib and also bloated...but as my doctor said gastritis and IBS can occure togather and also in our lifestyle because so much stress, we are prone to get GERD....can you tolerate gluten? As mainly I used to get this type of pain when I use some gluten containing foods..Do you feel little bit of relief in pain after passing stool?

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    • Posted

      Sometimes passing stool it relieves the pain but this comes back shortly but other times I can have no pain and and a BM can bring the pain on later. Just no pattern. This flare up is now in its 7th week!
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    • Posted

      Temporary relief of pain after a bowel movement is a common IBS symptom.   I have had this  Often IBS has no pattern. My first IBS flare up that had me running to my doctor in panic, lasted three and a half months!  Length of flare ups varies a lot and can be prolonged if you are going through a stressful time or are prone to anxiety/health anxiety.
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    • Posted

      Thanks Pippa, wow three and a half months. I really sympathise for you. I am trying to calm my anxiety and stress but in today's modern 100 mph world its difficult. For the last week I have stuck to very plain foods and today has been the first pain free day for some time.

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    • Posted

      Hi jammy as pippa said it is mainly because of IBS only...As I am again telling you there is no cure for this in allopathy...You can try some Alternative medicine physicians...They are  good at managing chronic illnesses...you can always get their advise...And as our condition is chronic, the management is also chronic...So even if you don't have symptoms you should continue with the diet which was good for you during attacks...eat yogurt it will help( if you are not lactose intolerant)..you can always introduce different things slowly....But in my opinion please get some advise from alternative medicine specialist and also dietician  might help as well...

      And do exercise and meditation and stay in positive environment...that helped me a lot...It seems like a minor thing but It has a huge impact....and I still emphesize on having vitamin d supplements if you have less exposure of sun...deficiency of which has connection with IBS..

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    • Posted

      Maybe bland foods are the key to helping your symptoms.  Have you heard of Low Fodmap?

      I do a lot of socialising with people who can make me laugh and relax which helps me a lot.  I also have a very relaxed life as a writer.

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    • Posted

      I now believe it was a strong coffee and a stressful day at work that contributed to this awful flare up. And what with a pretty hectic month and myself getting more stressed with the pain the flare up has lasted so long. I gave been looking at the low Fodmap and following the foods it points you too. Bland foods and trying not to get too anxious could be the key.
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    • Posted

      Hey jammy I am happy that you finally could draw out some conclusion about your flare up..Nothing is more important than our health..If we are healthy with mind and body then we can achieve anything, but if we are stuck with our health then everything seems negative...So  I wish you continue to follow your diet regularly even if you feel good and do some exercise that will help you to keep your mood elevated...biggrin
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    • Posted

      Very helpful discussion Jello

      I am IBS patient as well which diagnosed last year around September after having number of blood tests etc.

      I am the one who cant handle stress and when start facing pain in abdominal I tried google to get some relief which make moreworst and stress level way increased sad

      I was start feeling better since diagnosed IBS as stress released by doing diet control and playing badminton.

      But now back in trouble since march as have face few changes in life.

      I am working in nights since march, start having cooked tea 1 or 2 cup a day and taking fruits to reduce me cholesterol and start having OATS in breakfast with almonds honey strawberry banana blueberry ( healthy diet and purpose was to reduce cholesterol)

      In mid of march i start hungry feeling after even having a meal and than it converts to pain just below the ribs in the middle ( pain/burning feeling). I went to walk in center and dr advice e me to start Gaviscon which didnt help and last week i been to GP and he ask me to start meprozol 40mg , 1 tablet twice a day and i am taking from last 6 days but no joy.

      Now i start working in days from this monday , no tea since monday , avoid spicy food and dont have any fruit except banana but still feel on and off buring pain in stomach just below the ribs.

      Little bit relief after attending the toilet.

      Dr said eat meprozol for 4 weeks and if after 2 weeks feel no improvement come back we will put camera in and see whats wrong.

      Your kind suggestion in this regards owuld be helpful.

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    • Posted

      Hey Jarrel..sorry to hear about your pain...Well I am happy that you changed your diet and doing some exercise and that reduced your anxiety....Well in my case I also had moderate gastritis with IBS, which is common finding in this stressful life, Especially when your routine gets changed and sometimes it is very stressful for your body and also tea on empty stomach may add to that stess...Gastritis can cause bloating and if you pass gas or stool you feel ok...In my case I was also started on PPIs for my burning stomach issue and that helped me to a extent...

      Until and unless you don't see the lesion through your eyes or with some laboratory tests, It is hard to pinpoint the exact cause..So what we do is start with the most probable cause with some safer approach...I think your GP is absolutely right..You should try with meprozole for 1 month and if that doen't help then the cause is not the hyperacidity/gastritis...Then you can go for more detailed examination with some invasive tests...

      One thing which I experienced and I think that might be different for you but I had change my diet with oats before I diagnosed with IBS..I used to eat oats everyday for 3-4 months...But then I realized that It was very heavy for my stomach...when we have IBS our bowel becomes very sensitive towards soe harsh food...Oat is one of that beause It has fibers which might be harsh for our bowel..And during those time I could not even tolerate the skin of apple as it was also a insoluble fiber...And sometimes I had burning kind of pan in my upper abdomen due to IBS which used to somewhat relieved by passing stool...So I would suggest please reconsider about your oats and try to rethink about that breakfast...Fruits are always good , but avoid citrus for a while until you get your diagnosis...you can try to stop some harsh heavy food in your diet which contains insoluble fibers...And try to observe..It will take some time to recover, but then you will know it certainly...And we definitely cannot exclude your change in routine which can precipitate hyperacidity related burning pain..biggrin

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    • Posted

      HI Jello

      Thanks for your detailied feedback

      I have control my diet not having spicy food , citrus food , fizzy drinks but having meprazol 40mg twice a day from past 10 days.

      My stool is very losse but i go once a day.

      I feel pain in my tummy and feel bit relief in pain after attending tiolet.

      Do you think my stool is loose qnd pain in tummybecuase of meprazol ?

      I thought may be meprazol isnt suit IbS patients

      Please advise. Thanks

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