What exactly is IBS ?
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a disorder affecting the intestine. IBS involves problems with motility (movement of digested food through the intestines) and sensitivity (how the brain interprets signals from the intestinal nerves), leading to abdominal pain, changes in bowel patterns and other symptoms.
There are different types of IBS which are worth noting:
IBS-C: with predominant constipation
Irritable bowel syndrome with constipation is a condition that can significantly impact the quality of life of those affected. Constipation occurs when digested food moves slowly through the digestive tract and as a result, stools become hard, dry, and difficult to pass.
IBS-D: with predominant diarrhea
Irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea has diarrhea as the primary symptom. People with IBS-D experience frequent abdominal pain and watery bowel movements, and, on occasion, loss of bowel control.
IBS-M: IBS Mixed
Irritable bowel syndrome with mixed bowel habits is just as the name suggests, neither diarrhea nor constipation is the predominant symptom. People with IBS-M experience both the symptoms of IBS-D and IBS-C.
What are the common symptoms of IBS ?
Everyone who suffers from IBS will experience it differently. In general, symptoms include:
CONSTIPATION AND DIARRHEA
Some people will usually get one or the other, but in some cases, people may have bouts of both.
Sometimes the stomach will bloat and swell up. Passing a bowel movement can partially relieve the pressure.
These are caused by spasms in the digestive tract that can result in sharp pains in your gut.
Many people with IBS feel gassy, with even small amounts of gas causing pain.
Tips and tricks to get relief
IBS is a chronic condition, but that doesn’t mean that your symptoms have to go untreated.
Seek help from your healthcare professional
If you are suffering from constipation and you have IBS, please seek advice from your doctor or pharmacist.
Dulcolax® family of products
Occasional constipation is a common condition with a wide range of possible causes. We know how unpredictable and frustrating constipation can be, so we are here to help identify the possible causes and teach you how to address them.
- National Institute of Health. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. Irritable Bowel Syndrome. November 2017. Available at: https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/digestive-diseases/digestive-system-how-it-works
- Canadian Digestive Health Foundation. Irritable Bowel Syndrome – Statistics. Available at: https://cdhf.ca/digestive-disorders/irritable-bowel-syndrome-ibs/statistics/
- Canadian Digestive Health Foundation. What is Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) ? Available at: https://cdhf.ca/digestive-disorders/irritable-bowel-syndrome-ibs/what-is-irritable-bowel-syndrome-ibs/
- Canadian Digestive Health Foundation. Understanding the Prevalence and Impact of Constipation in Canada A Special Report from the CDHF. February 2014