Thursday, June 26, 2014

IBS Risk factors

IBS Risk factors
Many people have occasional signs and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. However, you're more likely to have IBS if you:

¬  Are young. IBS symptoms first appear before the age of 35 for about half of those with the disorder.

¬  Are female. More women than men are diagnosed with this condition.

¬  Have a family history of IBS. Studies have shown that people who have a first-degree relative — such as a parent or sibling — with IBS are at increased risk of the condition. It's not clear whether the influence of family history on IBS risk is related to genes, to shared factors in a family's environment, or both.


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Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Irritable bowel syndrome* (IBS) is a “syndrome,” meaning a group of symptoms. The most common symptoms of IBS are abdominal pain or discomfort often reported as cramping, bloating, gas, diarrhoea, and/or constipation. IBS affects the colon, or large bowel, which is the part of the digestive tract that stores stool.

IBS is not a disease. It’s a functional disorder, meaning that the bowel doesn’t work, or function, correctly.

Causes of IBS

Doctors are not sure what causes IBS. The nerves and muscles in the bowel appear to be extra sensitive in people with IBS. Muscles may contract too much when you eat. These contractions can cause cramping and diarrhoea during or shortly after a meal. Or the nerves may react when the bowel stretches, causing cramping or pain.

IBS can be painful. But it does not damage the colon or other parts of the digestive system. IBS does not lead to other health problems.

Symptoms of IBS

The main symptoms of IBS are

· Abdominal pain or discomfort in the abdomen, often relieved by or associated with a bowel movement

· Chronic diarrhoea, constipation, or a combination of both

Other symptoms are

· Whitish mucus in the stool

· A swollen or bloated abdomen

· The feeling that you have not finished a bowel movement

Women with IBS often have more symptoms during their menstrual periods.

Diet Changes

Some foods and drinks make IBS worse.

Foods and drinks that may cause or worsen symptoms include

  • Fatty foods, like French fries
  • Milk products, like cheese or ice cream
  • Chocolate
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeinated drinks, like coffee and some sodas
  • Carbonated drinks like soda

To find out which foods are a problem,

Keep a diary that tracks

  • what you eat during the day
  • what symptoms you have
  • when symptoms occur
  • what foods always make you feel sick Take your notes to the doctor to see if certain foods trigger your symptoms or make them worse. If so, you should avoid eating these foods or eat less of them.

Some foods make IBS better.

Fiber may reduce the constipation associated with IBS because it makes stool soft and easier to pass. However, some people with IBS who have more sensitive nerves may feel a bit more abdominal discomfort after adding more fiber to their diet. Fiber is found in foods such as breads, cereals, beans, fruits, and vegetables.

Examples of foods with fiber include

Fruits- apples, peaches

Vegetables- broccoli (raw), carrots (raw), cabbage, peas

Breads, cereals, and beans- kidney beans, lima beans, whole-grain bread, whole-grain cereal

Does stress cause IBS?

Emotional stress does not cause IBS. But people with IBS may have their bowels react more to stress. So, if you already have IBS, stress can make your symptoms worse.

Stress Relief

Learning to reduce stress can help with IBS. With less stress, you may find you have less cramping

it easier to manage your symptoms.

Meditation, exercise, hypnosis, and counselling may help. You may need to try different activities to see what works best for you.

Points to Remember

IBS means your bowel doesn’t work the right way.

IBS can cause cramping, bloating, gas, diarrhoea, and constipation.

IBS doesn’t damage the bowel or lead to other health problems.

The doctor will diagnose IBS based on your symptoms. You may need to have medical tests to rule out other health problems.

Stress doesn’t cause IBS, but it can make your symptoms worse.

Fatty foods, milk products, chocolate, alcohol, and caffeinated and carbonated drinks can trigger symptoms.

Eating foods with fiber and eating small meals throughout the day may reduce symptoms.

Treatment for IBS may include medicine, stress relief, and changes in eating habits


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