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Causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Although the causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome are not yet entirely understood, much knowledge on the subject already exists and the research continues. The fact is—a vast number of people suffer from IBS and although no cure is available as yet, some steps can minimize the impact of the condition.

Types of IBS

Irritable Bowel Syndrome can be classified into three sub-groups: Irritable Bowel Syndrome with Diarrhea (IBS-D), Irritable Bowel Syndrome with Constipation (IBS-C), or a combination of the two (IBS-A). IBS encompasses a wide range of symptoms and individuals can experience varying triggers. Since causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome stem from several factors (including heredity, diet, and disease), they can be managed through uniquely customized plans.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome needs to be diagnosed by a qualified physician. Unfortunately, many people try to self diagnose this disease by considering their symptoms and then making an assumption. Only after a doctor has performed testing and ruled out other conditions can a proper diagnosis be made. Self-diagnosis is a dangerous thing. Your symptoms may seem to mirror IBS but you could have another condition altogether. Not only might your condition require a completely different form of treatment but it may potentially be curable, unlike IBS which is unfortunately a lifelong nuisance. Likewise, the causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome may overlap with causes of other digestive disorders.

Symptoms of IBS include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Intermittent diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Painful abdominal cramping
  • Abdominal distension
  • Excess gas
  • Unusual bowel movements

Causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Several possibilities for causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome exist. One common belief states IBS could be caused by stress, which causes the bowel to contract. This stress reaction usually leads to a quick dash to the bathroom before diarrhea ensues. Food triggers can occur by the ingestion of spicy or fatty foods that result in an immediate need to defecate. Low-grade inflammation is also believed to be one of the possible causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Previously, doctors couldn’t observe this inflammation in testing. Low-grade inflammation can now be detected due to advances in medical equipment.

An increased number of mast cells in IBS sufferers is a recent discovery that’s still being investigated. Poor diet and sedentary lifestyle can lead to Irritable Bowel Syndrome as well, since the entire digestive system will function abnormally if not well maintained. Bacterial infections can also occupy a spot in the list of causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Minimizing Stress

Sufferers of IBS can improve their lifestyles to minimize the number of flare-ups they experience. If stress is a factor, individuals can seek out therapy or develop coping mechanisms for stress in their lives. By changing how they react to stress, people could minimize the excessive contraction of the bowels resulting in diarrhea.

Avoiding Food Triggers

Those with food related triggers can record their diet and symptoms for several weeks in a journal to notice any patterns in their flare-ups. This can help someone determine if certain foods should be eliminated from their diet. It’s important in avoidance diets to work with a nutritionist or doctor to ensure changes to your diet don’t leave gaps in nutrition. Food substitutions or vitamin supplements may be required.

Dietary Supplements

Probiotic supplements have shown great promise for alleviating one of the biological causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Many cases of IBS may be related to loss of beneficial bacteria and replenishing the healthy flora in your body could create a more harmonious environment. Therefore, a quality Probiotic formula such as Latero-Flora™ can help you maintain optimal digestive function and thus overall health.

Exercise and Lifestyle

Exercise and lifestyle can make a big difference as well. Those who have IBS with constipation (IBS-C) may find increasing fiber intake and exercising regularly alleviate many of the symptoms. Even through a moderate routine, such as taking daily walks, you can help to normalize your bowel functions. Reducing sugars and artificial sweeteners can improve your ability to have healthy bowel movements. Increasing your hydration levels is a great all-around solution for alleviating poor digestion, since water helps keep everything moving along.

Although there are no exact causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome that apply to all cases, learning your triggers and what steps help you have healthy bowel movements can make a big difference in managing the condition.

IBS can have a big effect on your life both in terms of health and overall outlook. It can be emotionally incapacitating to worry that everything you eat could send you into the bathroom with pain and diarrhea. Alternately, not knowing how long you have until you’ll have a bowel movement (due to constipation) and how painful it might be during the process. IBS can affect people in any stage of life or socioecono

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