Medicine Information

Emotional Effects of Irritable Bowel Syndrome


Irritable bowel syndrome sufferers often find that they have to deal with two sets of symptoms. The physical symptoms of diarrhea, constipation and pain form the main part of IBS, but sufferers may also develop emotional problems such as mild or moderate depression and anxiety because of the strain that IBS places on their lives.

There's no doubt that IBS can have a huge impact on your mental and emotional health. One of the reasons why people assume that IBS is caused by stress is that IBS sufferers can appear so stressed and unhappy. But is this really surprising? If you had explosive diarrhea, never-ending constipation or stabbing stomach cramps you'd be a bit stressed too!

The nature of IBS symptoms can mean that they are very difficult to deal with, both practically, in terms of being afraid to go out because of fear of diarrhea, and emotionally, because of embarrassment and the sometimes unsympathetic reactions of others.

Sufferers find that their social lives quickly diminish to nothing, or that they can no longer eat the food at restaurants or dinner parties without ending up in pain. Work or school can become a chronic struggle as you drag yourself in on days when you feel ill, knowing that if you didn't you'd get fired or kicked off your course.

You may also feel that you have to pretend to be healthy most of the time in spite of how you really feel, because people get tired of hearing about your condition or begin to say things like "Well why don't you go to the doctor" or "My mum had that and ate lots of bran and now she's fine. That's what you should do."

It can be very hard to bite your tongue and stop yourself answering back. "Oh, go to the DOCTOR, I see, that's where I've going wrong all this time, I thought you had to go to the hardware store. I shall now be cured."

What is important to remember is that anyone who is battling with IBS is going through a very difficult time, and deserves some genuine support, as does anyone with a chronic, long-term condition.

Hopefully, if you explain your condition to family and friends, support will be forthcoming, but if not you should ask yourself how much misunderstanding you are willing to put up with, and whether it is hazardous to your health.

This is what Heather Van Vorous says in The First Year - IBS: "You may even have friends or family dismiss your problem as 'all in your head.' It's up to you to educate these people, and then dump them if they persist in their ignorance at the expense of your health."

If they are truly your friends then they will want to learn about the condition and be ready to accept that their views are based on prejudice and assumption rather than fact.

But if they still believe that you're exaggerating then ask them to explain exactly why they believe that IBS is psychosomatic or 'all in your head', what scientific studies they are basing their views on, and how they explain the success of new drugs such as the selective 5-HT3 antagonist Lotronex. That should keep them quiet.

Sophie Lee has suffered from IBS for more than 15 years. She runs the IBS Tales website http://www.ibstales.com where you can read hundreds of personal stories of IBS and self-help tips.


MORE RESOURCES:
This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news


Financial Times

Scientists develop electronic 'smart skin' for sports and medicine
Financial Times
Electronic “smart skin” devices are being developed to monitor the biochemistry of sweating sports players, the health of stroke patients and the heartbeat of sick babies, researchers told the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting ...
Japanese researchers develop ultrathin, highly elastic skin displayEurekAlert

all 19 news articles »


KFDI

Flus, cold and cavities: How cold medicine can affect your kids teeth
KFDI
INDIANAPOLIS -- During this cold and flu season, dentists want you to take extra steps when giving cold and cough medicine to your children. Dentists at Indiana University Health report many of the liquid medications are chock full of sugars, which end ...

and more »


Standard Speaker

New medicine effective in fighting high cholesterol
Standard Speaker
The new drug is expensive, about $14,000 a year before insurance for the twice-monthly self-injected medicine. Blum said insurance companies typically will cover the drug for patients who can't reach their cholesterol goals with the highest tolerated ...

and more »


Forbes

Is Gaming Technology 'Medicine's New Frontier?'
Forbes
The Internet is rife with articles about the potentially harmful effects of gaming. Psychologists and parents have been debating the pros and cons of the issue for decades now—namely whether video games promote violence, social isolation and obesity ...



Stuff.co.nz

Popular Arthrem medicine linked with potential harm to liver
Stuff.co.nz
Medsafe is advising members of the public taking the dietary supplement Arthrem of a potential risk of harm to the liver. A widely used supplement to relieve joint pain could harm the liver - and some users have needed hospital care, Medsafe warns ...
Warning of potential harm to liver associated with the natural medicine ArthremNew Zealand Doctor Online

all 6 news articles »


HuffPost South Africa

Local Black Women Breaking Down Barriers In Medicine
HuffPost South Africa
From the youngest black female hospital CEO to the country's first black female neurosurgeon — young women in medicine are trailblazing. These mbokodos, all in their thirties, are as inspirational as they are aspirational. And today we're celebrating ...



Tri-City Herald

Medicine engineered specifically for you? That's PNNL's goal
Tri-City Herald
How disease develops and how it responds to treatment can be as different as people themselves. That knowledge is inspiring a new medical discipline, precision medicine, that relies heavily on the type of scientific expertise and resources found at ...



Front Page Africa

Why Is Liberian Health System Struggling With Modern Day Medicine?
Front Page Africa
Corruptions which includes, misappropriate used of funds, irrational used of resources and the failure of auditor to report the actual case if there is any because they negotiate with said administrator/s for little of nothing leaving the majority with ...

and more »


Healthcare IT News (blog)

Penn Medicine CISO: 3 Strategies every security team should have
Healthcare IT News (blog)
After all the cybersecurity threats and events in the last 12 months, infosec teams should focus on these priorities as the craft strategies into the future. By Dan Costantino. February 19, 2018. 09:08 AM. Share. cybersecurity threats. The information ...



Catholic San Francisco

'SLOW MEDICINE'
Catholic San Francisco
Sweet, now an associate clinical professor of medicine at UC San Francisco, decided to write a book “and capture what I learned so other people could experience what I experienced.” Five years later, in 2012, she published “God's Hotel: A Doctor, a ...


Google News

home | site map | Dr. Thad Thomas
© 2006