- Personal Health Information & Self-Help
Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Tips to Help Relieve Painful Bowel Problems
Irritable bowel syndrome is not a serious illness. For a start that is something to be grateful about. But it is an extremely unpleasant thing and could be embarrassing and causes pain and demands immediate tender loving care.
Am I Having Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
As the name implies, your bowel has become “irritated” as you alternate between diarrhea and constipation. Bloating is also experienced including excessive flatus (you know, passing gas). Abdominal pain is thus experienced.
Irritable bowel syndrome can occur at any age but usually between the ages of 20 to 50, which is where most of us belong. And it afflicts women twice as often as it does men.
The abdominal cramping or pain is usually located on the left side of your abdomen. Maybe you also noticed that the pain can radiate up to your chest, back or to your shoulders.
Some people have complained that they are also experiencing nausea, vomiting or belching even heartburn.
An important thing to note is that if you are suffering with fever, dehydration, anemia or weight loss along with the above symptoms, please go and look for a good physician. These are not symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
What Can I do if I have Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
- It would be wise to monitor the things that you have ingested--all of it from eating to drinking, from your main meals to your snacks. Write it all down. You see some people’s stomachs get bothered with drinks like coffee, wine, milk or even fruit juices.
- Allow your intestines to settle down by eating moderately and keeping away from fatty foods, fried foods and spices.
- Make sure to add fiber to your diet like bran cereals / oat bran or high fiber vegetables. Fiber greatly helps with your bowel movement especially constipation. There are over the counter fiber supplements that are also available. Psyllium powder is an excellent fiber supplement. Ask your doctor if you need to take this.
Dealing with Flatulence or Excessive Gas
- In case you are having flatulence or excessive gas, please avoid the foods that cause the flatulence. Here are some of the food that causes excessive gas which you may want to avoid: If you love dairy products you may have to cut those from your diet. Other food that causes excessive gas are carrots, raisins, onions, beans, celery, bananas, prunes, wheat germ, pretzels.
- These foods causes a moderate amount of gas like breads, potatoes, citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, grapefruit, apples and pastries. While these foods --rice, eggs, lettuce, nuts, potato chips, meat (beef, chicken, turkey and fish), broccoli, cucumbers, graham crackers are relatively safe. So you can eat more of these.
Other Things to Avoid
- Chewing gum
- Carbonated drinks
- Drinks that contains caffeine or alcohol
- Tobacco products
- Breath mints or candies that contain sorbitol or mannitol (may increase flatulence or diarrhea)
To help with your abdominal cramps, you can use heating pads or hot water bottle.
The Unknown Cause
Scientists have not been able to find that germ or virus that causes irritable bowel syndrome. Many researches believe that it is usually caused by emotional distress like stress or depression. And stress can affect your bowel habits too.
Having experienced an autoimmune disease with an unknown cause years ago, I too believe that many diseases are largely caused by emotional stress. Coupled with the things you can practically do like consulting a doctor, drinking medicines to aid the symptoms and using simple home remedies to help relieve your painful bowel problems,
I also encourage you engage in activities that relieve stress.
- Exercise daily.
- Try meditation.
- Laugh more.
- Worry less.
- Talk with a friend. Talking can be therapeutic.
- Write a journal and watch where your thoughts are.
- Do more things that you love to do.
Simple yet Profound Remedy
Lie down in bed and breathe deeply. Regulate your breathing as you inhale deeply (imagine you are inhaling goodness and light) and exhaling slowly (as you imagine you are expelling all your worries and fears). Repeat several times.
Place your hands on your tummy area. As you keep on breathing say this yourself, “I am sorry, please forgive, I love you and I thank you.” Repeat this many, many times.
If at this point you would like my help to do this with you, please do not hesitate to email me asking for healing prayer. I would gladly pray for you and send you loving and healing energies across the distance.