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Posted by: Samusho Posted on: 01.10.2020

As a successful full-time blogger in London, Scarlett Dixon kept her irritable bowel syndrome IBS diagnosis a secret from anyone aside from her teachers and parents for five years. When she finally opened up about it, at age 19, with a post on her lifestyle blog, the reactions shocked her. Her first major IBS flare-up happened at 8 years old, when she was sent home from school on her birthday. The exact cause is unknown. A really bad bout for Scarlett can last a few weeks, all day every day. Even when the pain does subside, a flare-up is still a downer.

We're stronger than we think. I am a 61 year old male and have had to deal with IBS-D for about 15 years. My first episode was at a football game and I didn't make it to the bathroom in time. Very embarrassing and traumatic. Anxiety plays a big role in triggering episodes. I worry about having an accident which causes more anxiety which causes more accident potential- classic with the syndrome! I have learned to avoid certain foods and beverages but do occasionally fall off the wagon.

Anti-diarrheals and anti-anxiety meds in small doses has helped. Mostly, I scope out the nearest bathrooms and let the chips fall where they may sorry!! I love golf and always use the course restrooms whether I need them at the time or not just to be on the safe side.

Airplane travel is really tough when the light comes on to stay in your seat and you really, really need to go. My biggest fear is having an accident on a plane or bus while touring. It has restricted my travel plans but my wife has the patience of Job and is very helpful in getting me through the tough times. It helps to write about it. Thanks for listening. At the beginning of this year,I was diagnosed with IBS.

The problem had, looking back, been coming on for two years prior. What a bummer - no pun intended. I must daily consider: What, how much, the mix of, food and drink I put into my belly.

Unfair, say I, a seventy-four year old male who has enjoyed any plate or drink placed before him. Recently I had to purchase a protector for the bed as I have had 'accidents' in the past and do a fair amount of traveling. There is a site out there that will tell you where to find public toilets on this Continent and others - probably great if you are near one such.

I have learned from speaking about IBS to friends and relatives who I did not know suffered from IBS that we all seem to be different as to just what sets of our IBS: What we ingest, the time period between onset and finish; the 'kind' of stool produced; mucous or no - a host of differences between us.

I kept a diary for some months of everything that I ate or drank, the times, and the outcome. I changed my drinking and eating habits. I learned not to fill my stomach but take smaller bits and pieces over the course of a day. I chew my food well; drink lots of water. I have been prescribed anti-anxiety pills.

I take a pill off and on if I think there is something coming up which might stress me. I find cooked white rice both filling and non-irritating to my gut. I was diagnosed with IBS in when I was in graduate school. I was glad to finally have a diagnosis but when the doctor told me nothing could be done about it except be given drugs for pain I was completely stupefied.

I was given several different drugs over a month, but couldn't function at all normally because of side effects. I was completely unsatisfied and frustrated. I don't want drugs for pain, I want a cure or something that will reduce the occurrence of symptoms.

I have found out over time that stress and certain foods are triggers for me. I started seeing a nutritionist who gave me a lengthy symptom questionnaire to fill out before my first appointment. It had questions pertaining to every major system in the body. I was interested and hopeful. She altered my diet and suggested I take several supplements. The diet has been difficult to say the least, but I am determined to try to take as much control over my sickness as possible.

It helps me physically and psychologically. I have learned how to cook through this whole experience and am grateful for that and for having reduced symptoms. I also started seeing a therapist who has helped me deal with stress of daily life better and has helped me reduce my anxiety.

She has given me perspective of my anxiety and life. It is incredibly disheartening to know that I can't do everything I want to do, but I am thankful for what I am able to do. I've decided to continue on my diet, take my supplements, do yoga and meditation, and work on dealing with my stress. I am forever grateful for the help my nutritionist and therapist have given me. Many college-age students have written us about how disruptive to college life it is to suffer from a functional GI disorder.

But some people find clever ways to manage their disorder and still enjoy and excel at school. If you are a college student with a functional GI disorder, we'd love to hear from you. Tell us what special strategies or tips have helped you:. Hi, I am in my second semester of college for engineering. I have been having IBS symptoms for almost one year. I have diarrhea attacks almost daily. Also I have lot of gas trouble.

I cry daily sitting in the bathroom. My college is strict about attendance and that adds to the stress. My stomach makes loud noises and I have gas problems and cannot evacuate my bowels completely.

My life has become hell. I am really stressed. IBS is the worst thing that has happened to my life. I never knew so many people were affected by IBS. To think that all this time I thought I was a lone sufferer.

Always feeling like I was alone and nobody understood me. Boy, was I wrong. I started noticing my symptoms when I was about I thought that everybody experienced what I did. But as I got older, the symptoms got worse.

I finally asked my doctor about it when I was He rather quickly concluded that I have IBS. I thought he was just giving me an answer so I would get off his back. But as I come to research more about IBS, he was right on. I am the type of person that stresses about anything and everything I keep my grades up towards the 4.

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This determination makes my life a living hell because of IBS. Within these attacks I experience shaking, profuse sweating They occur before I go out with my friends for the night, before I go on vacation, or anything that is not just staying home. If I have big plans to go out and do something, IBS restrains me and forces me to stay home until I finish passing a bowel movement.

IBS is my living hell.

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I hate it so much. I feel like nobody knows about it or cares about it and sees it as a simple complication that is manageable. Something needs to be done to fix this horrible life that everyone on this website is enduring. I have had IBS since I was an infant. My dad has IBS and so does my first cousin. I guess it does to a certain extent. When reading all these stories I realize my situation is usually not as bad as others, although at times it has been.

It was way worse when I was younger. I didn't want to go to the bathroom because it hurt so much. As a result I always ignored the urge to go and before you know it two or three months had passed by.

Yes, I would go two and three months without using the bathroom when I was younger. My mother didn't know what was wrong with me. The hospital had to help regulate my system. After a week I was released and put on fiber, prune juice, and prunes but none of it helped. I really never have an urge because I resisted it when I was younger so I don't get it at all.

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However, even when I use the bathroom frequently it still sometimes hurts really, really badly to the point where I'm almost in tears.

When I get to this point I usually do a mineral oil that my doctor prescribed to take only if I know I need assistance. There is hope - mine has gotten so much better over the years. I just have to stay on top of it and don't let it progress or get out of control.

I'm so glad I found this site. It's nice to see people, especially young people, who suffer from IBS. My mother agrees saying I constantly had constipation and complained of pain in my stomach. When I was in 3rd grade I was miserable.

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I was told that it was 'all in my head'. So, I lived for 7 years thinking I was crazy. I thought I was a hypochondriac. The summer before my junior year I got really sick.

The whole month of September I lost 30 pounds because I couldn't eat. I was fainting and just so sickly. My parents were so scared, and finally my dad said he wasn't taking it anymore and was going to find the answer.

I went to doctor after doctor, which between being sick and going to the doctor I missed 30 days of school.

Luckily, because of doctor notes and my being able to keep straight A's, I passed. I had tests done and blood taken. Finally they sent to children's hospital where I was diagnosed with IBS. I am now a freshman in college. Every day I question if maybe I should go to the sister branch of my college, which would allow me to live at home until I was older and able to get an apartment on campus instead of dorm life.

My first semester sucked. I constantly worried about how my condition would be that day. I missed so many classes because of pain and because of nausea keeping me up till my alarm went off. I went from a straight A student in HS to failing all my classes and being put on academic probation.

People often don't realize the challenges that come with IBS, Crohns, Celiacs, etc. But us sufferers do. We know the toll it takes on our jobs, friendships, and more importantly our dating lives. For the longest time I was literally searching the internet every single day trying to find some way to help myself get over my IBS. Dating is challenging and complicated to say the least but it doesn't have to be that way. Especially if you are honest with yourself and others about your condition. Dating is always an adventure full of fun moments, so don't make it weird by complicating it with IBS. make things simple, follow our advice and be prepared for the unexpected. Research suggests that the symptoms of IBS patients who are in supportive relationships are less severe than the symptoms of those who do not have supportive people around them. Educate Yourself It would be most helpful to the person that you love if you understand what IBS is.

I so badly want to be at home, just until I figure out what works for me, but I feel so embarrassed because my family not immediate will think I just couldn't do it. I already heard they think I won't finish just because I'm so shy.

Social-wise college sucks too. I can't be a normal college student.

A national survey conducted by IFFGD found that of those who had heard of "irritable bowel syndrome" only 17indicated they understood what it means. Despite a dramatic increase over the past decade of scientific knowledge about IBS, many people struggle to find adequate care. Nov 17,   What It's Like to Live (and Date) with Irritable Bowel Syndrome A Disorder in Disguise. Scarlett says she's had problems with her stomach for as long as she can remember. Her Dating with IBS. All of her friends were laughing, and it seemed like an innocent enough comment. Dating can be a daunting process under normal circumstances. But dating with IBS brings those inherent challenges up to a new level. The ukeitaiplus.comedictability of symptoms, special diet needs, and concerns about the need for quick access to a bathroom may all seem like too much to ask a potential love interest to deal with.

While everybody is bonding over late night pizza, pop and even booze. I am sitting in my room fighting off nausea and gas. I feel so alone because I can't do those things and I never will be able to. My boyfriend is really great about my IBS but I fear one day he will just get tired of it. I understand why, but if he just understood what I go through. I hate that IBS runs my life as much as it does.

I am on my winter break and I don't want to go back to college at least not back to my dorm. I hate the fact that I hate college. I want to love college but I can't - at least not while I live the dorm life, sharing bathrooms with complete strangers. I'm 22 and trying to finish up college. I was diagnosed with IBS a few months ago when I was finally fed up with it and went to the doctor. I was looking forward to a solution: a simple medication and it would go away My doctor prescribed an antispasmodic but it only seems to delay problems for a few days.

Your stories have made me more wary as it's becoming more evident this really never ends. I can relate to many of your college stories. I used to enjoy going to the bar with friends. I've tried to continue going. I hold a beer in my hand or get a Coke and tell people it's Coke and Rum.

It's quickly become unappealing staying out late and watching others get drunk. I haven't figured out how to fake that one yet. My memory has been decreasing fast. It takes me a few minutes to recall a week ago, and 3 weeks Forget it!

Concentrating and memorizing course work is way more difficult than it should be. Does anyone else have these problems? We had a close family death over a year ago and I dread people thinking I now have an eating disorder as result. It's not an easy name to bring up and I've only told one person that's what I have.

I'm pretty sure my boyfriend questions me when I say I'm not feeling well. His mom complains about her back a lot and overemphasizes that it prevents her from doing things, so it's easy to see how he relates my complaints to hers. I don't really tell him about it anymore. Everyday is just fine as far as he knows, because he doesn't get it. Examples include difficulty concentrating, sleep disturbances, muscle pain, or fatigue.

Unexplained weight loss is not a symptom of IBS and may signal something else. But if eating seems to aggravate symptoms, altering eating habits in response may explain weight change.

Many factors contribute to IBS symptoms, and vary from person to person. It takes time to sort this all out and a physician should help. If symptoms persist after initial treatment, let you doctor know. Visit our web page for help about ways to work with your doctor. Despite a dramatic increase over the past decade of scientific knowledge about IBS, many people struggle to find adequate care.

Mistaken notions continue, some perpetuated when overlooking how painful the disorder can be. In response to Kristen's story from '07, I understand exactly how you feel. I was diagnosed with IBS a couple years ago and ever since it has made my life hell. Honestly, I'm not even convinced that it is IBS, but that's what the doctors say, so who am I to argue!

I'm not the one with the medical degree I have tried every OTC gas medication along with plenty of other things that were supposed to help like peppermint oil capsules, probiotics, heartburn medication though I don't understand why my doctor gave me thisanti-spasm medications, and even anti-depressants!

I have drastically changed my diet too and yet nothing has worked. I also have been tested for celiac disease multiple times always with negative results. My main symptom right now is severe bloating and gas, but because there is no prescription medicine for that, my doctors have told me there is nothing I can take except simethicone I wish they could help me prevent the bloating.

I feel like there is something that can be done to alleviate some of my discomfort. To them it may seem like just a little bloating, but it is far worse than that. Even if I don't eat a lot of food, my stomach will puff up so much you would think I was pregnant.

Unfortunately, that feeling and look can last up to 3 or 4 hours at a time. Talk about a buzzkill. That pretty much can ruin my plans for the entire day. I have come to the point where I don't even want to eat because I just don't want to deal with the discomfort and I don't want to live on simethicone for the rest of my life. I just wish that someone could fix this. I know I am not the only one that has to deal with this, and with the amount of people who are diagnosed with IBS, you would think that someone would be able to help us sufferers by now.

I think that is the worst part of it all. Because there is no medicine or anything to fix this, we have no choice but to silently suffer through this every day. I just wish people understood what we are going through because it really sucks to feel like crap all the time when people think that it's all in your head or that it's not as bad as you claim. I am almost 70 and have suffered with IBS for several years despite trying out different meds and watching what I eat.

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Lately it has become hell. I do not know how much more I can stand. We went to FL on vacation and I never left the condo for two weeks. The pain is so bad. I also have other serious health problems. A lot of days I just pray to die. My husband is very understanding but not my family or friends.

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To them IBS is a joke. I cry so much because of the bad pain, heartburn and feeling hopeless. A few months after the surgery, I had heartburn-like symptoms and epigastric pain that mirrored GERD, but it was due to dyspepsia according to the gastroenterologist.

I finally felt better from January -April I went to Arizona in April and got food poisoning from swordfish. I haven't been the same since. I had gas, bloating, constipation, and worm-like stools. I saw my primary physician when I returned from Arizona and she thought I had viral gastroenteritis. I also saw my gastroenterologist who prescribed polyethylene glycol for constipation and said "at least you don't have Crohn's disease.

It helped with the bloating and gas slightly, however, my stools were no longer worm-like, just foul-smelling. I took the prescribed dose of mg 3 times per day for 10 days, however I had side effects from the medication including muscle spasms and tinnitus so I cannot take it again.

It is disheartening that there is so little that can be done to remedy this illness. My quality of life has declined and activities I enjoyed such as culinary tours are not an option. There are no IBS support groups in my area which makes matters worse. Most of my life I have suffered from nausea. When I was a child I went to the doctor all the time with this issue and all he could come up with was 'Food allergies' I can't complain because they really didn't know much about stomach issues back then, and he really was trying to help.

After years of nothing we gave up. After I got married, one day my husband walked into the bedroom and I was passed out on the floor. When I came to, he asked what had happened, I told him that my nausea sometimes gets so bad that I get light headed, sweaty, and dizzy. That was the end of giving up! We went to a gastroenterologist and he thought it was 'in my head,' so we never went back to him. We found another but he was so busy doing OTHER things in the exam room that I told him there was a monkey in my stomach to see what he would say - he just responded with an 'I see'!

Needless to say, I walked out. Finally, I found a great doctor!! Stomach problems are laughed at by some doctors so PLEASE be careful who you choose, bring a symptom list with you and try to make eye contact if possible. If the doctor interrupts you then you can be pretty sure he's not listening. Good luck all!

I have problems with diarrhea and major cramps. I have been taking loperamide almost everyday. I understand with others that it is very embarrassing. I hate having to go to the bathroom times in a public restroom.

I get very stressed and worried what others may think of me. Or if they are laughing at me. And more so in a public bathroom. I wish there was a cure for this. I have lost many jobs due to it and I have two kids to raise. I hate having it so much.

If anyone has any suggestions please share your stories. There is an excess of health-related information available on the Internet.

Some is downright wrong. But even accurate information can be subject to interpretation and wrong conclusions can be drawn. Never self-diagnose an illness that may be as serious and life-altering as IBS.

Not only might your self-diagnosis be wrong, but other diseases can co-exist with IBS that a doctor can identify. If you suspect you have IBS, see a doctor. Try not to feel embarrassed - bowel symptoms are among the most common that doctors see. There are strategies for managing IBS that may improve your symptoms and help you feel better.

Start with an accurate diagnosis; work with a knowledgeable doctor who listens and cares about your concerns, and who works with you to help find a treatment plan aimed at your needs.

I have just read some of the stories and I felt much better than before, knowing that there are a lot more people in the world who are having similar digestive disorders like me. I am only a 19 year old girl from Spain, and I started with this problems almost two years ago. At the beginning I started not feeling well with some kinds of food, so I begun to be more careful with what I ate.

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However, instead of improving, my stomach got worst; I had a diarrhea every few days. I ended up last summer with an appendix operation because all my family thought that that was the reason for my diarrhea.

But when I began the university this year, everything was the same, or even worse, with even more frequent diarrhea. I have reduced the variety in my meals so much that I am fed up of always eating the same thing. In my opinion, maybe the stress has something to do with it, but obviously my digestive system has something wrong too, and I wish to find some medicine soon.

Thanks a lot to everyone who reads my story. I have suffered with undiagnosed gastrointestinal and bowel problems for 31 years. It impacted everything I did and greatly affected my years as a young adult. I finally decided that I would seriously try to uncover the problem because no one else seemed to be able to do that for me. I took margarine not butter totally out of my diet for about ten days. I also had myself on a very restrictive diet. As I added back food I noticed that as long as I stayed away from margarine, I had great improvement in my digestive tract.

I don't use margarine at all now. I also avoid using corn oil and those of "lesser" quality. I do use butter, but I'm careful to not have too much. Because I don't use margarine and the "lesser" forms of oil at home, my system can handle the products I consume outside the home.

I was truly amazed that eliminating margarine, corn oil, etc. I guess that I'm either allergic to those foods or I have an intolerance for them. Hope this helps someone. Meals that are too large or high in fat may provoke symptoms of abdominal cramps and diarrhea, and IBS sufferers do often find that reducing fats in the diet may help with symptoms.

However, other disorders can also cause difficulty digesting fats, including liver disease and gallbladder disease. You should always consult with your doctor when making dietary changes. It is helpful to understand stress in IBS as a disturbance in the body - not as a psychological event. The factors that produce stress can be physical, biological, environmental, or psychological. Any of these can activate the central stress system in a person.

The central stress system involves the release of chemicals in the brain such as CRF, corticotropin releasing factorwhich in turn affect a biological response that alters the way the brain and the gut interact. This altered brain-gut interaction can result in worsening of IBS symptoms. A viscous cycle can be triggered; pain and discomfort may lead to fear of symptoms, which then activate a stress response that alters brain-gut interactions, which may lead again to pain and discomfort.

Dec 10,   As you're probably well aware, dating with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can be a bit of a challenge. Pre-date jitters, rich restaurant food and too . Jul 09,   "Dating can be challenging even under normal circumstances, but IBS can bring up additional obstacles, such as the ukeitaiplus.comedictability of symptoms, the need for quick access to a bathroom, and a. Whether you're in the early days of dating (which may involve restaurant dates) or live with your partner and want to plan meals together, IBS can make the subject that bit more fraught. "Eating out can be a minefield when you are trying to impress your date and go to a fancy restaurant where everything on the menu is a potential cause of a flare-up," says Moon.

When this is happening, breaking the cycle can help relieve symptoms. I was diagnosed with IBS when I was 22 years old. I went two years trying to treat myself with moderate success. I finally sought professional treatment after suffering daily symptoms while on deployment in Iraq. Apparently the increased stress I was experiencing was taking its toll on my intestines. I was put on a mild antidepressant and a stool softener. Both helped within a week.

The only problems I still encounter happen when I lapse in my diet and eat too much dairy. For now I'm just trying to find a way to live with my stress while in Iraq while looking to the future when I'll be in more control of my surroundings and diet. Thank you to everyone who has shared their stories! The parallels, such as doctors' responses, food triggers, social situations, etc. I am a 39 year old female who was diagnosed with IBS when I was in college. However, I think I have had it most of my life.

However, it was not perfect. I still got flare-ups, especially around menstruation. I did a little research on myself and discovered that when there is a change in my hormones during menstruation or around ovulation, my IBS acts up.

About a year ago, I ended up in the emergency room due to severe pain. The only thing the doctor did was prescribe a painkiller. The interesting fact was that the painkiller could upset the stomach. Therefore, I chose not to take it. I let the pain subside naturally.

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After that incident, I told myself that I had enough. I would continue research on my own. I am not a doctor, but I understand that there is a relationship between the central nervous system, serotonin and hormones.

I am no longer on the Zelnorm, since that was recalled, but I don't feel that I need it regularly anymore either. Managing IBS and other bowel disorders often means confronting issues of uncertainty, loss, and control. While you may not always be able to control your symptoms, you may find ways to control how you manage them.

I have had more than my fair share of bowel accidents, as I have frequent diarrhoea associated IBS. Basically it is often stress related as it happens to me as it is normally very difficult upon very short notice seconds! Most of the time, I win. But there are other times that, well I lose! Like the athletic community I have had more than my fair share of public humiliation and embarrassment in the extreme.

With exception to two instances which were victim of prank, all the other instances are either unexplained or due to heavy stressful situations. As these were indeed sporadic, which actually makes it worse, there is no telling of an impending attack.

It just So I have to be very careful and always know my surroundings: that is awareness of just where the loos are, whether they are indeed publically accessible, and that I can gain access within as quick a time as conceivably possible. Again, I am usually successful in this as I know my situation, but not always so lucky. It can be guesswork for me especially on travelling and in unknown destinations. Experiencing urgent diarrhoea attacks in public is no fun!

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Some of those who are 'uninitiated' seem to only make jest and crack insensitive jokes about it. Personally as I do take personal offence, I also understand that many of these people are rather ignorant and have not been properly educated thus living off of old and outdated mythos, as perpetuated through Western cultural traits.

Also from a financial end, procuring rather hefty laundry bills from having to wash soiled laundry so frequently can become quite taxing in its own right. I have unfortunately wound up destroying some very expensive and in some cases, irreplaceable clothing. That is very frustrating as well, needless to state. But unfortunately there is no 'cure' for soiled laundry, unless one went the napkin pad route. Sorry, but despite my own plight, I am still too conscious in regard to wearing adult nappies!

In a way, as this may seem rather odd, but I prefer to have some of these accidents in public as solely to EDUCATE the general public through hard and present experience, that yes, indeed this IS a more common issue than they seem to realise.


It is more of an altruistic sacrifice of sustaining embarrassments as bad as they are, so that the general public at large shall finally come to terms that indeed this is a very common problem. It's a brave thing to do despite its inherent disgust in Western culture. I am 81 now and the past year has been difficult with never knowing when I need a bathroom. I have pretty good control now IF I am careful about fresh foods, milk, etc. I eat lots of rice daily, oatmeal, black tea, etc. Some foods may or may not cause a problem, they cause me to be very careful and even when I am, it happens.

Then constipation results, then it begins its pattern again. I have learned by trial and error. I believe it began because of a medicine I had to take. Hope this helps. I have had IBS for over 30 years. I was diagnosed maybe 20 years ago.

It was such a relief to have a diagnosis, but that was short-lived. Since that time I have been to so many GI docs as well as therapists and also a nutritionist to get some help in managing this.

I have not been successful in getting any relief at all. I am now at a point where I have eliminated so many things from my diet that there isn't much left. I have a bad reaction from so many foods but also just from the action of eating.

I am constipated but when I do have a BM it is soft or sometimes I don't go for 3 or 4 or 5 days and it is soft or watery.

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My system does not work right at all. I suffer from abdominal pain constantly. After a BM it should feel better but for me it actually feels worse. I am a 24 year old female who has been dealing with IBS for as long as I can remember.

I was officially diagnosed in with the syndrome, and have been finding ways to deal with it more comfortably every day. The majority of my family and close friends know about my disease, which has made dealing with flare-ups more comfortable.

My friends are extremely supportive, and being able to talk with them has made dealing with IBS more bearable. I now am able to use public restrooms more often, when previously I would hold it for HOURS, such as in high school, which was hell.

Every day I left feeling extremely cramped and backed up from holding it for so long sometimes to the point of having difficulty walking. During college, I started to space out my classes enough to allow myself to be able to go home to use my bathroom in privacy if need be. Also, using the restroom at low traffic times, or using the farthest stall from the sinks makes trips to the restroom more comfortable.

Holding it makes everything so much worse. Working can be extremely embarrassing, especially because after eating my stomach makes noise and I get very bloated, and usually will have a BM shortly after. I have found that by working at jobs where I am on my feet moving around, I am more comfortable and do not stress myself out on whether or not my stomach is going to act up that day or not, and if people will hear it.

Having mobility also allows for my stomach to digest foods easier than sitting right after eating. I do sometimes have to make stops at home to relieve myself when certain situations are embarrassing, or when I know my BM is going to be diarrhea.

It definitely sucks, but something I have unfortunately just accepted as being a part of my normal life.

After doing research, I introduced probiotics into my daily routine, and stay away from as many fiber foods as possible. I noticed also that alcohol increases spasms, as well as greasy foods. If I am going to go out with friends, I usually will have a cocktail at home so as to get my bowel movement out of the way and to allow any spasms that may occur a head start in the comfort of my own home. Nobody else in my family has it except for my father, who seems to manage it relatively well as to not affect his life too much.

I do get frustrated often by it, especially when I have bowel movements on some days, but I would rather live as accepting of IBS as I possibly can than be uncomfortable throughout my days. I loved reading all of these stories, and have learned so much from all of them. My IBS definitely is not enjoyable by any means, but I just try my hardest to cope with it and live as full of a life as possible.

For many persons, IBS involves a seemingly endless search for answers. Parts of life may be lost as adjustments are made in response to symptoms. It takes time, thought, and courage to keep sorting out and searching for ways to best manage the condition. I am a 47 year old female.

The doctors are in the middle of diagnosing me - and they are leaning towards IBS-D one doctor has ruled out the obvious culprits and is not ready to give a diagnosis, and another doctor in the practice who I saw on one occasion thinks its IBS. The diarrhea started a year ago.

At first it came on so suddenly, that I was lucky to make it to the bathroom! My problem is that when I have to go to the bathroom - and it can be any type of bowel movement - not just diarrhea, I have to RUN to the bathroom.

I have to rush to the bathroom for any kind of bowel movement on average every other day, with the off days feeling like my stomach is very tight gurgling, bloating, but no pain. From what I am reading, diet is a major factor and I am trying to cut back on the fat in my diet.

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Unfortunately, I am a very picky eater and have lived on dairy cheese, milk, eggs all my life! It is very hard to cut those out. This has impacted my life where I have isolated myself from having a social life. I still go out and enjoy my friends, but not as often I use to. And forget about thinking about dating! Anyway this is a great web site. I am a 50 year old female who has had chronic constipation problems all my life.

I remember my mother having to give me a suppository and enema but it would still be so painful to pass and still had to strain a lot. Back in early March of this year I was looking for ways to relieve my constipation naturally without using laxatives and suppositories on a regular basis. I found your article about retraining your bowels. I read it all the way through and followed the instructions carefully and then started myself on a bowel training program.

It helps to keep a food diary and when and what time of day you usually have a bowel movement. Eating a big breakfast with a high fat and fiber content helps to kick in peristalsis very soon after eating.

Drinking a hot beverage with caffeine helps too. Then minutes after you eat go sit on the toilet for 30 minutes. Read, or listen to calming and relaxing music. Using slow deep breathing exercises help relax your whole body and actually helps you to have a bowel movement without having to strain or force stool out.

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I have found the deep breathing exercises to be the most beneficial to me. I also increased my dietary fiber to grams a day and increased my water intake to 64 oz. I take fiber twice a day, morning and evening. To make it taste better I squeeze fresh lemon juice in it. I use the very early morning before my roommate gets up for work to sit on the toilet for 30 minutes and then I can totally relax and not worry about using the bathroom too long. This also keeps me from having to use a public bathroom later in the day to have a bowel movement.

I am totally uncomfortable and embarrassed because of the smell and noise it causes. At home I burn candles or use matches to clear the odor as much as possible. Ever since I started this bowel retraining program I don't have constipation problems unless I don't follow it daily.

It has to be daily commitment on my part or I pay the consequences the next day. I have had IBS with constipation alternating with explosive diarrhea since I just put myself on a bowel movement retraining program to see if I can control my IBS symptoms this way so I can begin to have normal regular bowel movements every day at a timed schedule to avoid needing to be close to the bathroom.

Has anyone with IBS with constipation and alternating explosive diarrhea tried a bowel movement retraining program and have it work for you? At this point I want to have control over my bowel movements and when and where I have them and to have a normal formed bowel movement without severe pain when I need to have one! I am very grateful for everyone who has shared their story.

Our collective experiences help us learn important details about IBS we couldn't learn any other way. Our stories help us to cope and that gives me real hope. I am amazed when I see others who have the exact same issues and reactions as I. I would be so relieved if there was a pill I could take once a day that had all the nutrition I needed so I didn't have to eat.

I have terrible urgency problems that have caused me great anxiety but I try hard to keep my head about it. Many times I have not made it to the bathroom and have had to relieve myself outside someplace out of the way. I can just start the motion of eating and set off the process that leads to a couple of fierce cramps and then uncontrolled diarrhea.

I have a classic set-up for IBS. First, I was a passenger in a motorcycle accident a deer leapt in front of the bike my friend was driving at 50 mph leading to seven surgeries on my gut that simultaneously caused and removed adhesions in and around my intestines. I had endometriosis which required a hysterectomy and ultimately, the need for a resected sigmoid colon to get rid of it all. So mechanically, there are significant issues. With my immune system overtaxed, I got Lyme Disease which caused gastroparesis or paralysis of the stomach.

what phrase..., excellent

After treating the Lyme for a couple of years, the stomach issue resolved almost completely but I believe damage to the nerves was done.

I am gluten intolerant and have multiple food allergies. All this has led to a malabsorption problem.

final, sorry, but

Clearly the nerves and sensitivity of my entire gut have been heightened by all that's happened. Ongoing, my IBS symptoms occur about midday when I have one to two bouts four on bad days of urgent diarrhea and the rest of the day I'm okay except for nearly constant bloating. Sometimes I can go for a week with no problem.

If I eat poorly I will have a heavy bloat and gas at night. I prefer only one meal a day and little healthy snacks, otherwise in the evenings I feel like I have a lead balloon in my stomach. I am just trying to create some coping strategies to make this more manageable.

My husband is oblivious so it's not hard to keep the details from him and he is not supportive of medical issues anyway. I have not told my friends either although I guess I could so I feel fortunate that there is a place to tell my story among people like you who truly understand.

I have had constipation issues since I was a child. I grew up eating southern cooking, and I did not like vegetables or fruits. I am sure that eating this way has contributed to the situation I find myself living with now.

I also am sure that my abusive father could have caused me to have nervousness, which could have caused stomach disorder. I had issues for years; however, it started getting worse in my thirties. I was having more and more episodes with severe cramping followed by diarrhea and severe pain, and the episodes would last a few days.

The doctor said I needed to take some laxatives, because I was having weight gain as well as the pain and it was because I was full of stool.

I continued to have diarrhea and constipation episodes for years. I have had every type of test you could imagine, and the doctors never seem to think it was that big of a deal.

I got the same advice over and over: eat more fiber, vegetables etc. I have tried everything, the doctors have suggested, but nothing ever works for long, if at all. I was diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome in my later thirties. I was happy to at least have a name for my nemesis. I started cutting out foods that I thought were causing problems, and at first it seemed the more I cut out the better I was doing, but I ended up just having never ending constipation.

I am now forty eight years old and for the last ten years, I have had to give myself warm water enemas. If I do not use them every day I have pain and bloating.

I also have started having problems with fissures and hemorrhoids, which is horrible when I am still having to enema. I have never discussed this with anyone other than close family members, or with women I was seriously dating.

When I came across this web page and read some of the articles, I literally cried out loud and could not stop for a few minutes. I was crying because I felt like I was not alone, and others did understand. I have wondered what would happen to me down the road as I grew older, or if I would live a long life, or if this constipation could cause cancer or other issues. But I keep living, and most people who know me think I am completely normal.

I never complain or talk about it, because no one understands, and if they did know they would think all I have to do is eat more fiber, or drink more water. I had a successful business in construction, until the economy took me out of the game. I never had a college education, so it was not easy to find a job, so I decided after filing for bankruptcy, I would need to return to school, and get some type of degree.

I have been completing prerequisites for the nursing program at the community college in my home town. I decided to become a nurse, because I want to be able to help others. I do have times when I feel like giving up, because each time I have to give myself another enema, it is a constant reminder of my dilemma.

I keep pushing forward, and hope to be a successful nurse in the new future. I will not give up, and I do hope that someone is able to find a way to help all of us who suffer have normal lives. I do appreciate all the people who have shared their personal stories, and know that maybe I am not as good at expressing myself as others, but I do hope that someone will benefit from reading my story, as I have benefited from reading your stories.

Since I was 13 I am now 20 I have had stomach issues. Beginning in the 6th grade I began to drop a lot of weight from not eating much because everything made me very nauseated. Everyone thought I had an eating disorder for the longest time, but the food really was making me so much worse! Finally, my mother took me to Children's Hospital Pittsburgh for an upper endoscopy and a colonoscopy, to no surprise they were both clear! My issues continued but then seemed to stop. Now for the past 8 years they come and go.

I remember from age I felt wonderful and was able to eat anything I wanted! However, beginning in the early winter of my issues seemed to arise from a bout of anxiety. Anxiety was what I was told I had when there was no explanation for my stomach issues, which at the time made sense because I have an extreme fear of vomiting. So anyways, since my stomach has been in and out of spells of nausea. Recently, I decided to make an appointment with Mayo Clinic.

I had a hydrogen breath test milk makes me pretty ill for a few days which came back negative. A normal score is less then 20 and I only blew a 2! I then had an upper endoscopy with a biopsy testing for celiac disease which was clear. I have been to the ER 4 times since April 24th !

opinion obvious

That is 4 times in one month due to the extreme bloating and nausea I have. Finally, the doctor diagnosed me with IBS. Whether it is more constipation or diarrhea, I couldn't say.

It definitely began with more D then C but now it seemed to be switching to C! I have cut soda-pop out of my diet completely and try very hard to stay away from large amounts of fried foods. I also steer clear of milk but I find I can tolerate cheese and sometimes ice cream in smaller amounts.

Thank goodness because alfredo is my favorite!! I began eating probiotic yogurt today in hopes of making myself a little more regular. My mother has also had "stomach issues" for as long as I can remember.

Nice to know that I am not alone in this. Hope everyone finds something that at the least relieves their symptoms to some degree. Lets all pray for a treatment to end the suffering and keep our heads high!

I have a very hard time keeping it under control. My symptoms are diarrhea, constipation, terrible pain, bloating, stomach pain, hot flashes. They are very bad. I find my breath smells too and when I am having an attack I hate to talk to anyone. It definitely makes your life a living hell, sometimes I wish I did have a disease they could help me with. I go to doctors, and do as they ask, come home with prescriptions and pain medication.

I find my pain meds help calm everything down so I ask for them. I hate being in pain. Thanks for reading my story. I am 50 yrs old and have suffered with IBS since I was a teen.

Dating and traveling were almost impossible. I tried out for band and made it, only to have to give it up because I couldn't ride the bus to games because of the diarrhea that would hit without notice. I have been able to live with it, but I don't enjoy life to the fullest because of stress of not having a bathroom close.

I almost cancelled my wedding and eloped because of the fear I would get to the alter and have to go to the bathroom. Thank goodness Imodium has worked miracles for me.

I have a wonderful husband and two children, and up to this summer neither had IBS. But my 15 year old daughter started to have severe stomach pain which the doctors thought was just school anxiety from exams. On one cringeworthy date, at a Broadway performance of the NutcrackerCollins was holed up in the restroom during the opening curtain.

Sex, especially with someone new, can be extra intimidating. What if you have an IBS episode before, during, or after? IBS may also affect, well, performance. A study published in December in the International Journal of Impotence Researchfor example, found that men with IBS were more likely to develop erectile dysfunction compared with men without the bowel disorder. These expert strategies can help you connect with confidence.

Pick the right time and place. You might find that your date has something he or she has been meaning to tell you, too. Learn relaxation techniques. To get a handle on dating and sex anxietymoment-by-moment stress management is key. Scheman says. There will always be good days and bad days with anything. Would you mind if we stayed in on Saturday night and watched a movie instead of going out?

Avoid using your IBS against someone by, say, threatening that if they make you angry it might trigger your symptoms. You can only control your reactions to it. Seek out counseling if issues persist. With IBS, you may not want to have sex because you feel lousy, have anxiety about going to the bathroom, or have low self-esteem because of the condition.

Cognitive behavioral therapy CBTa form of psychotherapy that focuses on symptom-related worry, may help. To feel more comfortable, intimate, and sexy in a relationship, talk with your partner about your fears and needs.

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