This is a very different subject on my blog but I feel its something I should share, it doesn’t get took very seriously this day and age and it really baffles me why. I have suffered for around 5 years with chronic IBS now and I feel like I can share some things.
(IBS) Irritable Bowel Syndrome is not an easy topic to bring up at the dinner table, frequent symptoms are gas, constipation, diarrhoea and stomach pain/cramps. It is a condition that can really affect ones life.
Daily life with IBS
I have found myself to be constantly putting up with IBS, mine flares up now and again from being the worst to not being able to eat or drink a single thing without being doubled over in agony or best being able to get through a day with no pain or constipation symptoms what so ever.
I have been keeping a food diary recently and I watch every single thing I eat and feel guilty at the thought of having a fizzy drink when I am out with my partner or friends because I know I will suffer later on. I find that milk, cheese, stodgy meat and fizzy drinks or squash bring IBS on for me.
IBS can strike at any time, it is very embarrassing as you can be fine all of a sudden and then it instantly strikes and you desperately need the toilet. It can ruin your social life because it can be frightening to go out and then have these urges and issues.
I have lost count the amount of times I have sat at work in pain hoping my colleagues and customers cant notice, it has really affected my jobs and attendance in the past.
I have been diagnosed with IBS however I have had such bad pains that I am doubled over screaming that my GP has thought maybe it could be appendicitis. I have never had tests to rule that out but I have always been told no its definitely IBS from the symptoms I describe.
It has taken years to be finally told it is IBS, doctors wouldn’t take me seriously when I explained the pain. I had to remain persistent and demand for more tests. It has been very embarrassing for me as I have been with my partner for 4 years now and luckily he is very understanding but its not nice when you are constantly crying in pain, struggling with trapped wind and constipation.
My coping strategies
I have found that my coping strategies have been to just take a minute and breathe, breathe through the pain and sit down, lie down whatever you need to do. I find hot water with lemon works amazing for me, avoid heavy junk foods and fizzy drinks. Laying a hot water bottle on your tummy can also ease the pain. Sometimes its a struggle to leave the house because I feel extremely bloated and sore.
My advice to other IBS sufferers
Be kind to yourself, allow yourself to have this pain. I use to think how can I be in this much pain and crying so much over gas. Now I’m over it, if I’m out with my partner and I have a flare up I will say I need to sit down and take a moment. Allow yourself to go through the pain and just take a moment to breathe.
Try to look for certain foods and drinks that set your IBS of and keep a diary. Cut certain foods out and see if that helps. Drink plenty of water and get plenty of rest.
My biggest advice to you is if you feel there is something not right with your body, then go to the doctors and tell them. Be persistent and tell them how it is making you feel and impacting your life. I am 28 weeks pregnant and I have been telling my GP how awful I am feeling and he wants to do further tests. Listen to your body!
When I feel like I really cant cope anymore you will find me under a blanket on the sofa with my dog and a cup of tea!