What is the therapy for irritable bowel syndrome?
If lifestyle changes are made but there is no relief from irritable bowel syndrome symptoms, some medications may be helpful.
Some people with mild and moderate symptoms need medication now and continue to do so.
Antispasmodics – have a limited benefit in irritable bowel syndrome.
In some people, they relieve abdominal pain and discomfort, especially if the symptoms appear right after eating.
Some trade names include butylscopolamine (Buscopan) and Mebeverin (Duspatal).
Remedy for diarrhea – can be effective for preventing and relieving symptoms of diarrhea. Examples are loperamide (Imodium, Lopedium), diphenoxylate and atropine sulphate (Dysurgal).
laxatives (laxatives) – can help treat constipation. Laxatives must be taken under the supervision of the doctor.
Anticholinergics – Some people need medications that affect certain activities of the autonomic nervous system (anticholinergics) to relieve the painful spasms of the intestine. These can be helpful in people who have bouts of diarrhea, but can increase constipation.
Anti-anxiety medications – can help people with IBS, especially those who are worried and suffer from anxiety.
There are also effective medications that relieve pain and improve bowel movements (defecation).
They should be taken over a longer period of time.
Antidepressants – The use of low-dose antidepressants in the treatment of IBS is not tied to depression, but benefits from the effect on the brain and gut.
Antidepressants can reduce the intensity of pain signals that travel from the gut to the brain.
What to do in case of irritable bowel syndrome?
Many people are reassured that their condition is irritable bowel syndrome and not something more serious like ulcerative colitis. Just understanding the situation can help you be less anxious about the condition. This, too, can alleviate the severity of symptoms. The symptoms often persist for a long time if left untreated. In some cases, symptoms are mild and do not require therapy.
If symptoms become bothersome and occur frequently, the doctor will recommend one of the following treatment options:
Fiber in irritable bowel syndrome
The recommendation of fiber in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome has changed a bit over the years. Fiber (like bran) are elements of food that are not absorbed by the body.
They remain in the intestines and make up much of the stool. There is a lot of fiber in fruits, vegetables, grains, whole wheat bread, etc. It is said that a high-fiber diet is helpful in treating the symptoms of IBS.
However, scientific studies have shown that a diet high in fiber can actually make irritable bowel syndrome worse. For example, the current guidelines for IBS claim that a high-fiber diet is not recommended for people with IBS.
It is important to distinguish two types of fiber. The two main types of fiber are:
- soluble fibre (which dissolves in water),
- insoluble fiber.
Soluble fiber helps relieve symptoms in some cases, but insoluble fiber does not.
The soluble fiber must therefore be increased and the insoluble ones minimized.
In addition to pectin, dietary sources of soluble fiber include oats, nuts, seeds, certain fruits and vegetables.
In addition, fiber supplements are also available, such as Flosine, which is based on psyllium (psyllium). These remedies can be found in pharmacies and grocery stores.
The recent evaluation of therapy for IBS cites psyllium as the most appropriate supplement.
Insoluble fiber is mainly found in corn bran (corn), wheat bran, and some fruits and vegetables.
Above all, bran should be avoided as a supplement.
Food, Beverage and Lifestyle at IBS
A healthy diet is important. However, some people with IBS know that certain foods in a healthy diet can trigger and worsen symptoms. The current guidelines for IBS include the following points of the diet that can help reduce or minimize symptoms.
- It requires regular meals, which should be consumed slowly with sufficient time.
- You should not skip a meal and avoid too much time passing between meals.
- One should drink at least eight glasses of fluid a day, especially water or other drinks that do not contain caffeine, such as herbal tea. This helps to keep the stool soft so that it can easily pass through the intestines.
- Tea and coffee should be limited to three cups a day (caffeine may be a factor that triggers symptoms in some people).
- Limit the amount of carbonated drinks.
- Do not drink too much alcohol. (Some people report improvement in symptoms after they stop drinking alcohol and smoking.)
- Those who have diarrhea should avoid sorbitol, an artificial sweetener found in sugar-free candies (including chewing gum), beverages, and some products for diabetics or people who are losing weight.
- For those who suffer from bloating and flatulence, it is advisable to increase the intake of oats (for example, breakfast cereal or porridge) and flaxseed (up to one tablespoon a day). You can buy flaxseed in grocery stores.
Individual food intolerance. Some people with IBS observe that one or more foods can trigger or worsen symptoms (sensitivity or intolerance of foods).
If you’re not sure if a food is causing the symptoms, it may be helpful to talk to a doctor who can refer you to a dietitian. A dietitian may be able to recommend an exclusion diet.
For example, starting from one type of meat, one type of fruit and one type of vegetable. After that, it is recommended to gradually add different foods back to see if any are causing the symptoms.
This allows you to identify one or more foods that trigger the symptoms.
This can be a tedious task and often you won’t find any food that causes this problem.
However, some people have been able to identify one or more foods that are causing the symptoms and if they avoid them, the symptoms can be brought under control.
The most commonly reported foods as causes of symptoms of IBS are: wheat (bread and grains), rye, barley, dairy, onions, and coffee (and other caffeinated beverages such as tea and cola).
Probiotics for irritable bowel syndrome
Probiotics are supplements that contain good bacteria, that is, bacteria that normally live in the gut and appear to be beneficial.
Taking probiotics can increase the amount of good bacteria in the gut that help fight off the bad bacteria that can have negative effects on symptoms.
You can buy probiotics in capsules at the pharmacy. The dose is on the label of the product. You can also buy foods that contain probiotic bacteria. These include some dairy drinks, yogurt, cheese and ice cream. They may have labels such as “probiotic,” “contains bacterial cultures,” or “contains live bacteria.”
Some studies show that people who take probiotics relieve symptoms of IBS.
Currently, there are various bacteria used in probiotic products. There is ongoing research to clarify the role of probiotics and find out which ones are most beneficial. In the meantime, if you want to try probiotics, you should use the same brand of probiotic for at least four weeks and then evaluate its effect.
If the first product makes no difference, you should try another probiotic for at least four weeks.
Other lifestyle factors, such as regular exercise, can reduce symptoms. Stress and other emotional factors can trigger the symptoms in some people. Thus, anything that lowers stress levels and emotional distress can be helpful.
Keeping a diary of the foods and lifestyle for 2 to 4 weeks can help keep symptoms under control.
You should write down everything you eat and drink as well as moments when you are stressed.
Often it can be used to identify the trigger – for example, food, alcohol or emotional stress – and to find out whether physical exercise relieves or prevents symptoms.
When is irritable bowel cured? Prognosis for IBS
In most people with irritable bowel syndrome, the condition tends to persist for a long time.
The severity of symptoms increases and then decreases, and long periods of time with no or only mild symptoms may exist.
The therapy helps to relieve symptoms when they flare up.
In rare cases, at a certain time, the symptoms disappear completely.
IBS does not shorten life expectancy and does not cause colorectal cancer or other serious diseases.
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