Irritable Bowel Syndrome, well known as IBS, is a very common disorder of the intestines that leads to crampy pain, gassiness, bloating and changes in bowel habits. Some people with IBS have constipation and others have diarrhoea. The IBS victims often feel an urgent need to move the bowels. Some people experience both. Sometimes the person has a crampy urge to move the bowels but cannot do so.

IBS is just a mild annoyance, but for some people it can be disabling. They may be afraid to go to social events, to work or travel even short distances. Irritable Bowel Syndrome is also called Spastic Colitis or Spastic Colon.
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Why does it occur?

         It is a functional disorder as there is no sign of disease when the colon is examined and so probably results from disturbances in intestinal activity, anxiety neurosis, stress and dietary deficiencies or intolerances. Over stimulation of the nerves that trigger bowel activity results in excessive bowel contractions, abdominal pain, diarrhoea or constipation.

Dietary deficiencies
    Taking Tobacco, Coffee, Alcohol, Irregularities in sleep
    Medications – Antibiotic therapy and others.

     IBS causes a great deal of discomfort and distress; but, it does not cause permanent harm to the intestines and does not lead to intestinal bleeding of the bowel or to any serious disease. Many victims mistake this for other inflammatory bowel disorders such as amoebiasis, Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Inflammation of the small intestine is usually called Crohn's disease while inflammation of the rectum and right portions of the colon is called Ulcerative colitis. In these disorders symptoms include diarrhoea, bleeding, abdominal pain, fever and weight loss. The victim may experience mucous sticky stools and seen on the motion.

Amoebiasis is caused by a microscopic parasite called Entamoeba histolytica. Anyone can get amoebiasis. It is infected by swallowing the cyst stage of the parasite in contaminated food or water. It can also be spread by person-to-person contact. Faecal material from infected people may contaminate water or food, which may serve as a vehicle to infect others. Examination of stools under a microscope is the most common way to diagnose amoebiasis and other worm infestations.


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What makes us Gassy?

  Flatulence is another common problem of gastric ailments. On an average, a person generates 1 to 3 pints of gas each day, which consist of nitrogen, oxygen, hydrogen and small quantities of methane. The causes of gas include swallowing air while eating or drinking, increased intestinal activity and excessive bacterial fermentation of food components in the bowel. A foul breath and very offensive flatus warn the individual that he is suffering from an inflammatory bowel disorder. Abdominal distention and discomfort may give rise to pain through the abdominal organs. Often they mimic serious illness as if related to the organs.

Carbohydrate rich foods are often the worst offenders. More gas eminates from sugar and starches. Colonies of harmless bacteria in the colon eat the carbohydrates, giving off the by-products -- hydrogen, carbon dioxide and methane in some people. A special type of sugar called Raffinose is found in beans and in smaller measures in some vegetables and grains. The human body lacks the enzyme called Alpha-galactosidase to digest this sugar and so bacteria in the colon have a feast.

How to prevent?


    Eat slowly, chewing with mouth closed
    Avoid stress and anxiety
    Avoid “Gassy Foods”

What are the reasons for constipation?


    
Constipation is a very subjective complaint. Ideally, a person should have a bowel movement each day; when three or more days go by without a bowel movement he has constipation. The causes of constipation are numerous and include lack of exercise, side-effects of medication, disease, crash dieting, obesity, dehydration and a low-fibre diet.

The primary dietary recommendation is to increase the fibre content of the diet. Avoid highly refined foods.

  Drink at least eight to ten glasses of water a day.
      Avoid breakfast variety, take meals.
      Take food on time.
      Take plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.
      Avoid excessive intake of iron or calcium carbonate supplements.
      Avoid highly refined food -- cakes, noodles and snacks
      Regular use of laxatives is discouraged since this practice causes dependence and possible spastic         constipation.
      Regular aerobic exercise improves bowel function and often cures constipation.

Guidelines for early diagnosis of digestive disorders

See your doctor if you experience the following symptoms, particularly if they are unexpected or persistent:

Abdominal pain before or after meals.
Persistent feeling of fullness, bloating or flatulence.
Nausea or vomiting.
Heartburn, regurgitation or water brash.
Pain or difficulty in swallowing.
Loss of appetite.
Continued unexplained weight loss.
Indigestion developing for the first time in mid or later part of life.
Persisting diarrhoea, constipation or any alteration in bowel habit.
Change in the colour of your stools, especially if they become black, dark red, pale or contains mucus.
Bleeding when you pass stool.
Pain when you pass stool.
Feeling that your bowels are emptying incompletely.
Generally feeling tired, lethargic or unwell in association with any abdominal symptoms.

Treatment

      Irritable bowel syndrome is a challange to medical field. Homoeopathy offers wonderful treatment to the victims. I had treated many cases with very good results.We give more importance not only to the disease symptoms but also to the mental and physical symptoms of the patient. We treat them as a seperate entity. It helps to aid the patient from his anxiety and its associated problems. Homoeopathic medicines often gives wonderful results in an idiopathic, undiagnosed gastric disorders. I remember a case of chronic diarrhoea of five years duration. The patient was sixty years old lady, who had gone through all types of investigations and studied normal. I prescribed her medicines based on her symptom totality, she responded surprisingly and became alright within a period of seven days. Everyone in her family were surprised and started taking homoeopathic medicines. Several intestinal conditions labelled as incurables are quite amenable to homoeopathy.   

 

Clinical evidence

 

Click on the following links

IBS...I can go everywhere!
Peptic Ulcer...very cool after Homoeo treatment
Appendicitis...surgery avoided