6 Helpless. There are time when IBS leaves you feeling helpless. This may be at the start of the condition when you have no idea what is triggering the symptoms, or when you struggle to get a grip of the condition. The digestive process is a mind blowing physical, chemical and neurological process and pinpointing what exactly is causing your IBS can take a great deal of time, if it happens at all.
7 Frustrating. IBS often flares up, you may have a good week then a bad week, or you may have it all the time. However your IBS presents itself it will remain frustrating until you are able to understand what is driving your condition.
8 Time consuming. Leaving the house can be an arduous process for IBS sufferers. Getting yourself to a place where you feel comfortable is very tricky and can add a great deal of extra time to your day. Any trip will generally involve extra restroom visits and planning. Even shopping will take longer, as many will have to read every ingredient label.
9 Standard of care. This in no way is intended to label all Medical Practitioners are some are wonderful, caring and simply excellent are that job. Some are not, there can be a massive gulf in the standard of care. Some do not understand the condition at all and treat their patients as if they are making a bit of a fuss. We re-iterate that this is not all, but it is a lottery.
10 Sacrifice. IBS can rob you of a normal life. It can leave an imprint on every facet of your existence, from work, to family and relationships. It can remove your ability to grasp opportunities and to take risks and worst of all it can stop you from enjoying the one chance you will ever get to live on this earth. (Unless you believe in reincarnation**)
* Some IBS can be ‘cured’. If you have an infection in your gut , you have been taking medication, a source of stress is removed, if you had a bad diet or drank too much alcohol/caffeine and changed, then in those instances and a few others IBS can be ‘cured’, however for most of us that is not the case.
** Favourite reincarnation quote ‘ Knowing my luck if reincarnation exists, I’ll come back as me’.
New IBS Sufferers
1 Embarrassing. IBS is an embarrassing condition. It is very private, and not something you can discuss at the dinner table. This removes the ability of many sufferers to talk about their condition, and leaves them to suffer alone, in silence.
2 Painful. Many IBS sufferers endure frequent bouts of severe pain from which there is little relief.
3 Restricted Diet. Why can’t lettuce be really bad for IBS, why is it all the good stuff that has to be taken out of our diet? Sadly a life of IBS will leave you struggling for options, although the low FODMAP diet has given sufferers a greater insight into trigger foods it still leaves unable to tuck into the occasional doughnut.
4 Ignorance. Nearly 1 in 5 are believed to suffer IBS and as a result the condition has been profiled as something that effects women in their thirties with bloating and gas. Many sufferers will know that the condition can be severe, distressing and effects young, old, male, female, it does not discriminate. Sadly a lot of non sufferers stick to the myopic profile above.
5 No cure. There is at present no known cure, although you may be lucky enough to alleviate many of the symptoms*. Diets such as the low FODMAP diet certainly help, but they do not cure. Most sufferers are left with a long battle to find a way for them to manage their symptoms.