Dietary advice is much better now than it has ever been, and in particular the low FODMAP diet appears to be making some headway. If you discover that your child has IBS and your Medical Advice does not fix the problem, then diet will be one of the best ways for you to help your child.
As with adults this will vary from child to child, however there are some fairly simple principles to follow. The most important will be to take care with the things children love, sweet fizzy drinks, ice creams, and fast food can all play havoc with a IBS and thus should be avoided. I loved all these things as a child and suffered tremendously as a result of my dietary choices.
I consider myself very lucky. I grew up in a house with two loving parents and an occasionally annoying sister. I grew up in a peaceful village and as I have grown older, now appreciate the idyllic child hood I received.
The only dark cloud over this horizon was my IBS. IBS is in the family so to speak on my fathers side, his brother in particular suffers terribly from the condition. From the moment I was born it was a problem (so I am lead to believe).
At the time the only advice given to my parents was to feed me ‘stodgy’ food, whatever that means. To this day I believe it to be just an excuse my mother cooked up, as for all her many wonderful qualities the ability to cook was never her strongest point.
Don’t let up
IBS in kids can lead to long lasting problems later in life which may take a very long time to fix. The type of parent that has taken the time to find this article is already doing a wonderful job. That drive to help your child will be useful when you face many of the problems associated with IBS.
We are not a medical site, we are an experiential site, written by those who have been through the condition. One thing we have almost all experienced is apathy from many Medical Practitioners over this condition. IBS seems to the easy answer to any digestive condition. Once the diagnoses has been made then you are often left on your own.
Once you have a diagnoses then that is when the work should begin, however many in the medical profession stop at that point.For the sake of your children’s long term mental health being demanding at this point will help them enormously. Make sure that you are provided with as much help and support form them as possible and do not allow them to simply diagnose then disappear.
For your child IBS will be deeply unpleasant, it takes many years to get to know and understand your body, and even longer to know what is ‘normal’. Try to bear this in mind when talking about the problem and get them to be as honest as possible. This is an embarrassing condition and if your child ends up bottling it all up, then long term there may be severe consequences. Educating them about their bodies and diet will also be a huge help.
This is a two way street as you need them to help you to understand what is happening. Much of the advice regarding diet is distorted by IBS. If my mother were to feed me a healthy and fibrous breakfast my day would be hellish, however much dietary advice will suggest that. Noting what foods act as triggers will be very helpful.
Count to ten
As much as I love my dear parents, they were challenged by my IBS as a kid. Simply leaving the house could be nothing short of an epic voyage, with me repeatedly visiting the restroom. Five minutes after leaving I’d need the rest room again. Looking back I see just how well my parents held their nerve. My fathers only quirk (being ex military) would to occasionally loose patience and use military tactics to try and get me to control myself. That tactic did not work, and while I understand his frustration urge other parents to try and keep cool if this behaviour is occurring. I can only assure them that their child wishes to leave as much as they do.
IBS in kids in not pleasant for parent or child. Try to hold your nerve and be patient, in doing so you will be giving your child the greatest chance of gaining control of their life and leaving them without the many psychological issues which may arise out of IBS. As IBS sufferers we thank you for taking the time and trouble to read this article, maybe not now, but one day your kids will thank you.