You’ve Been Diagnosed with IBS: What Does It Mean?
By Dr. Tamar, Naturopathic Doctor
You plan your trips based on the nearest washroom. You’ve limited what you eat because you’re constantly feeling bloated, gassy, or your tummy aches. You have diarrhea or
constipation, or both! Your energy is down the drain from constantly dealing with your digestive issues. If you’re a woman, you may notice worse symptoms around the time of your
period. You might be anxious or depressed because this is taking such a toll on you and nothing you do seems to work. You’ve limited your social life because you don’t feel energetic
or you can’t eat out without feeling horrible afterwards... If you have IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), then you can probably relate! And, contrary to what you may have been told, it’s not all in your head.
“Irritable Bowel Syndrome” sounds harmless enough, but for those that deal with it on a daily basis, it has a serious impact on their quality of life. You may have been diagnosed with IBS, or you may be struggling with chronic digestive issues and be one of the 75% of people that goes undiagnosed. While a diagnosis is helpful to give your digestive troubles a name,
unfortunately it doesn’t give your healthcare professionals a clearcut answer to treating it.
Why? Because a diagnosis of IBS doesn’t tell you anything about what’s actually CAUSING it!
It just tells you that you have a certain set of symptoms, and that, most likely, more serious diseases (such as Celiac disease, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, or colon cancer) have been ruled out.
If you have these symptoms, you likely have IBS (Rome III criteria):
• For at least the past 3 months, you have had recurrent abdominal pain (it is often described as discomfort, not necessarily pain)
• These abdominal symptoms have to be present at least 3 days a week during the past 3 months
• These abdominal symptoms have to be accompanied by at least 2 of these 3 criteria:
1) Symptoms improve with a bowel movement
2) When the symptoms start, you notice a change in how often you have a bowel movement (can be more OR less frequent)
3) When the symptoms start, your stool looks different
So, what a diagnosis of IBS tells you is that you have to dig deeper to find out what’s causing it if you want to get better for good. The good news is that I can help you with that! By putting
together the clues of your medical history and running targeted testing if necessary (tests looking at IgG food sensitivities, your gut microbiome, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, or
others), we can find out what might be causing your IBS symptoms. We then formulate an individualized treatment plan for you, so that you can regain your digestion and your life back.
Our Naturopathic Doctors offer free 15 minute consultations. This is a great way to meet them and see if Naturopathic Medicine might be able to address your health concerns.
Downtown Brampton Wellness Centre
Call: 905-451-3963 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org