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Irritable bowel: causes, symptoms and treatment

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

The syndrome irritable bowel , also known as irritable colon , is a chronic condition characterized by changes in bowel habits and abdominal pains that are exalted because the intake of certain foods or in periods of high tension and nervousness. It is a very common condition whose causes are not entirely clear but which is directly linked to the psychological aspect , as occurs with other gastrointestinal diseases. Do you want to know more about this condition? In this FastlyHealarticle we explain the causes, symptoms and treatment of irritable bowel .

What is irritable bowel?

The syndrome irritable bowel syndrome is a disorder of chronic nature in which patients often recur throughout his life, characterized by symptoms such as change in bowel habits passing from diarrhea to constipation, bloating and abdominal pain and other discomfort bowel that They present without it being possible to associate them with any type of alteration or problem with the shape or functioning of the intestines.

After various analyzes, and once it is determined that there is no obvious infection or physical problem in the examinations or exploration, then the specialist will begin to suspect that the origin of the symptoms could be due to an irritable bowel picture . There is no specific test to diagnose this condition, however the presence of certain symptoms and a certain lifestyle could help the doctor to make the diagnosis.

Causes of irritable bowel syndrome

Unfortunately, the cause of irritable bowel syndrome has not yet been discovered , however the most accepted theory is that this disease has a great relationship with the levels of tension, stress and nervousness of the patient, and that as with other gastrointestinal conditions emotions play a fundamental role when triggering symptoms.

This occurs because the functioning of the intestines is connected to our brain through the autonomic nervous system . In periods of tension, the nerves tend to become more active, which can cause the intestines to contract or compress, producing the symptoms of this condition in people with a more sensitive colon. In some cases, this syndrome can occur after an intestinal infection, this condition is known as postinfectious irritable bowel syndrome.

In addition to these theories, it is believed that there are some risk factors that increase the chances of suffering from this pathology, some of them are:

  • Being a woman, as this condition is more common in this group.
  • Having suffered from gastroenteritis.
  • Have food intolerances such as celiac disease, lactose intolerance, fructose, etc.
  • Suffering from hormonal alterations.

Symptoms of irritable color

The symptoms of IBS are one of the main causes leading patients to the gastroenterologist. The discomforts are not necessarily constant, however they are exacerbated in strong periods of stress or tension, as well as when our diet is very high in fat, preservatives or irritants such as spicy or caffeine.

Those who suffer from it may have periods of diarrhea, constipation or alternate both pictures. The characteristic signs of this condition are:

  • Abdominal swelling
  • Abdominal pain usually concentrated in the intestines and of mild intensity. It is usually relieved after going to the bathroom.
  • Gases.
  • Soft stools and urgent need to go to the bathroom in cases where diarrhea occurs.
  • Constipation and difficulty in evacuating in some patients.
  • In addition, there is usually a sensation of incomplete evacuation, a feeling of rapid fullness, nausea and in some cases vomiting.

Treatment for irritable bowel: proper diet and medications

The profound change in the diet and habits of patients with irritable bowel syndrome is the only way to improve the symptoms of this condition, and thereby relieve the patient.

Some recommendations regarding the diet that should be taken into account are:

  • Avoid very greasy foods, fried foods and junk food, which will increase stomach upset and make digestion difficult. Opt for lean meats and fish grilled, broiled, baked or cooked.
  • Eliminate from the diet those foods that stimulate and irritate the intestine such as caffeinated beverages, fatty foods, spices and spices, prepared meals and spicy foods such as soups.
  • Smoking worsens the symptoms of this condition, so it is recommended to stop this habit.
  • Nor is it advisable to overindulge in excessive alcohol intake, which also irritates the intestine.
  • In the case of constipation, it is advisable to increase the fiber in the diet by consuming fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes and whole grains. Patients who tend to diarrhea, on the other hand, should limit fiber so as not to worsen the picture.

Depending on the intensity of the symptoms, the specialist may recommend the intake of certain medications when they occur. In this case, it is common to take medication to control stomach spasms, to treat diarrhea, relieve constipation, stomach pain and even to reduce anxiety.

Irritable bowel treatment: managing stress

Reducing tension, stress and nervousness is essential for the treatment of irritable bowel , so making a significant effort to reduce these factors will have great benefits. That is why at FastlyHealwe recommend:

  • Perform physical exercise frequently, practicing any activity at least 3 times a week. This will help regulate intestinal transit, release tension and generate substances that increase our physical and emotional well-being.
  • Opting for specific relaxation practices such as meditation, yoga or Pilates can also have great benefits.
  • Adequate rest is essential. It is recommended to sleep at least 8 hours a day, always go to bed at the same time and try to rest well to reduce the tension caused by insomnia or poor rest.

Can irritable bowel symptoms be prevented?

Although irritable bowel is a chronic disease that can be persistent or occur during certain periods, it is true that by making some improvements in our habits we can prevent the symptoms associated with this condition.

Some alternatives to prevent irritable bowel syndrome are:

  • Eat a diet rich in protein and fiber, avoiding foods rich in fat or irritating ingredients.
  • Eat on a regular schedule and in a calm and relaxed environment. Chewing food very well and eating calmly is essential for good digestion.
  • Drink at least 2 liters of water a day, which notably favors intestinal transit.
  • Avoiding overeating foods that increase flatulence, such as legumes, can be helpful in reducing gas.
  • Frequent exercise and stress management are also essential for the treatment of this condition.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Irritable bowel: causes, symptoms and treatment , we recommend that you enter our Digestive System category .

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