What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?
Irritable bowel syndrome, otherwise known as IBS, is a common condition that impacts the large intestine. The disorder is characterized by a number of symptoms, including abdominal pain, cramping, gas, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation. IBS is considered a chronic condition and can be managed long term.
For patients who are diagnosed with IBS, only a small number of people suffer from severe symptoms. Many patients are able to manage their symptoms by making changes to their lifestyle. For example, some patients can manage symptoms by controlling their diet and managing their stress levels. For patients who suffer from severe signs and symptoms, they are able to receive treatment through mediation and counseling.
Common IBS Symptoms
While the signs and symptoms for each patient vary, they typically last for a long time. Some of the most common symptoms of IBS include but are not limited to:
- Abdominal pain
- Changes in bowel habits and bowel appearance
What Triggers Symptoms of IBS?
IBS symptoms are most commonly triggered by:
Food: Certain foods may trigger IBS symptoms, such as dairy products, wheat, citrus fruits, beans, carbonated drinks, cabbage, and more.
Stress: Another type of trigger of IBS is stress. Individuals who have IBS may experience more frequent symptoms during times of increased stress. However, it is important to know that stress doesn’t cause the symptoms–instead, it may aggravate them.
If you would like to learn more about how our GI doctor in Thousand Oaks can provide you with the management and treatment you need for IBS, contact us to schedule a consultation.
When to Consult With a Doctor
If you are experiencing an ongoing change in bowel habits or any other symptoms of IBS, then it is best to consult with a gastroenterologist in Thousand Oaks. It is imperative that you consult with a gastroenterologist if you are experiencing persistent symptoms, especially more severe symptoms, such as the following, as they may be a sign of a more serious condition:
- Unintentional weight loss
- Rectal bleeding
- Unexplained vomiting
- Difficulty swallowing
- Persistent pain when passing gas or having a bowel movement