A person, who suffers from irritable bowel syndrome, primarily suffers from one of three symptoms.
2. Alteration of diarrhea and constipation
Although, it is less common for a person with IBS to suffer from predominant constipation than diarrhea, for those who do, there are ways to find relief from constipation, abdominal pain and bloating.
There are different treatment options – both medicinal and alternative remedies -for those who suffer from constipation. The following is information regarding diverse treatments and what you need to know about each.
Constipation symptoms may be caused by specific foods that are being ingested. Therefore, try keeping a food diary to find out what foods may not only be making constipation worse, but may help to relieve your symptoms.
For instance, gluten is recognized as one of the leading causes of constipation in IBS sufferers. Therefore, a gluten-free diet may help alleviate symptoms. In order to eliminate gluten from your diet ensure you read food labels to see if gluten is among listed ingredients. However, keep in mind that gluten-free foods tend to be low in fiber. Therefore, you may require other sources of fiber such as eating more fruits and vegetables.
If you are considering a gluten-free diet it’s a good idea to consult a dietitian to find out how effective this diet control is for constipation.
Fiber supplements are designed to add bulk to the stool so that waste can travel faster through the intestines. That being said fiber supplements need to be taken with great care, as problems can occur.
For instance, inundating the boy with fiber without sufficient water intake, can cause bloating, gas and make constipation worse. It is imperative to drink plenty of water when taking fiber supplements because fiber absorbs water.
Furthermore, natural fiber sources, such as bran, can aggravate the stomach of an IBS sufferer. This is because bran contains high amounts of wheat and gluten which are not tolerated well by an IBS stomach.
Nonetheless, the right fiber supplement taken as recommended may be helpful in relieving constipation in some sufferers. Fiber supplements such as Metamucil, Konsyl or Citrucel can be found in pharmacies, but it is a good idea to talk to your doctor first and learn more about supplements before starting treatment.
Laxatives are an effective short-term solution for relieving constipation. However, there are different types of laxatives and some are stronger than others. Although laxatives may work in the body differently, depending on the type, each is designed to soften stool so it can slide easier through the intestines. One such laxative that is often recommended to IBS sufferers is milk of magnesia. This is a gentle laxative that is known as a hydrating agent and causes the intestines to retain more water to soften stool.
Laxatives are not recommended for long-term use and can be habit forming. If laxatives are taken for long periods of time, the body will eventually develop immunity and require stronger laxative methods. Prolonged used of laxatives can also make constipation worse and make the body laxative-dependent. Furthermore, be advised that stimulant laxatives such as Ex-lax are powerful and very hard on the system.
Make sure you investigate different over-the-counter laxative products, and speak to your doctor about laxative treatment before using this remedy.
Consider talking to you doctor about prescription medication for relief of constipation. Zelnorm is one of the newer drug treatments for IBS constipation and works by increasing stool movement in the bowels. Zelnorm has been found to effectively alleviate abdominal pain, bloating and constipation, and is only prescribed for short-term use.
Finally, regular exercise and drinking plenty of water helps to relieve constipation, and are natural remedies that can be used with any form of constipation treatment.