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Crohn's and Colitis Support
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Flare up again - what causes it?

Hello,

I'm flaring up again - really frustrated as I don't know what is causing it. Does anyone have any ideas on what causes flare-up's? I'm on the FODMAP diet and seeing a nutritionist so feel like I have really been set back with progress.

Thank you,

Jo

22 Replies
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Ibuprofen causes mine to flare. Clemmie

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Ibuprofen is not recommended as it's known to cause flare ups.

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I know that now but didn't until I developed colitis. Clemmie

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I only found out about Ibuprofen last year - no-one had advised me not to take it! It can't be this trigger though as I haven't taken any since August 16.

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I myself am still struggling to find out what causes my flare-ups. Have been on the low FODMAP diet off and on since October of 2016. Even when following it strictly I still have flare-ups although less frequent. And less severe. Everybody says anxiety and stress causes flare-ups but I don't feel particularly stressed and anxious no more than normal life gives you. So I really don't know what to say. You should ask your nutritionalist about the flare-ups while following the diet and why that happens. My doctor just said the diet should help with my symptoms and like I said the diarrhea is much less and pain is much less. But I still have occasional days where I just have to lay in bed on my side in the fetal position. But I have also been diagnosed with Diverticular colitis through a colonoscopy. Also I have esophagitis and GERD which certainly doesn't help the bowel condition. I also have been on a mild antidepressant for the diverticular colitis supposedly it helps on the nerves in the bowel. So whether it's the medication or the diet that is made my episodes less frequent it's hard to tell. So hang in there.

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Hi Suesch, your issues sound awful and I really feel for you. I wish we could find out what causes these issues in the first instance. It's like our bodies are reacting to something but we just don't know what. I've paid for a genetic test from Mthfr Genetics and booked to see a functional practitioner in Leeds. She's advised I also need to book the One Test from Genova Diagnostics before she can read my genetic test. I'm really hopeful about this and might be one step closer to understanding why my body has gone wrong. I also have an under-active thyroid, endometriosis & interstitial cystitis.

Wishing you luck in your journey to wellness.

Jo xx

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The FODMAP diet is for IBS, IBD is completely different so dont expect miracles. In fact a lot of the foods on the recommended list exacerbate my Crohn's!

Stress is another cause up of flare ups in IBD, but we all have different tolerances/intolerances that effect IBD. Have you looked on the Crohn's and Colitis UK website?

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Hi Willow, I joined Crohn's & Colitis UK last year so have loads of info. I'm seeing the consultant tonight so we'll see what he says. I can't seem to tolerate oral steroids and the suppositories are not working.

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I was given budesonide for my flares, worked amazingly well for me. Clemmie

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No I cant tolerate steroids either they sent me loopy. Have you tried azathioprine or mercaptopurine? and are you on any other meds?

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Hi Willow, no I haven't tried those - the only other meds I am on is Levothyroxine for and under-active thyroid and Amitriptyline to help me sleep.

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it may be worth asking your consultant about medications specific for IBD. unfortunately disease progression can occur and the severity depends on genetics.

Its a nice thought that diet alone can 'heal' IBD but the truth is very few people can control it on diet alone. Have you been diagnosed long?

Let me know how you get on x

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Hi Willow, the consultant has advised I use Colofoam which I've tried before and is no use but I will do as he has instructed. I will see him in 3 weeks time and if the flare hasn't improved I'll have to have another colonoscopy (7th one). I was diagnosed in 2008 and had flares on and off over the years but it does seem to be getting worse. xx

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I would ask for 2nd opinion to be honest. you definately sound as tho you need regular medication to keep your IBD under better control. You are well within your rights to see a different consultant x

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Hi Jo, it's awful this IBD. I wish someone did know what causes flares!! I myself don't eat gluten, very little dairy. Walk everyday and go to meditation classes to try keep stress levels under control. It's been a godsend to me. Ive just started Anzathropine and shall be starting on Humira next week or week after. Before you take anything check that it's ok to have with you having IBD. I took very strong pain killers for my back and I think they contributed to my problems but they were the only thing that managed my pain. I wouldn't take them ever again. Hope it eases soon for you πŸ˜€

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Hi Ange - thanks for replying. I haven't heard of your meds - are they in tablet form? I don't understand why I'm not being offered anything but suppositories or steroids. I used to take ibruprofen nearly every day for headaches & pp pain but stopped last summer when I found out it can cause flare ups. Xx

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I have Crohn's so maybe they treat UC with different meds!! I have had UC in the past but it cleared up on its own by the time I had all the tests done. Anzathropine is a tablet and Humira is injection as I've chosen to inject myself. Seriously if your not happy get a second opinion. I'm seeing my surgeon tommorow which will be 8months since my operation but that's another story!! Going back to your original post about not knowing about ibuprofen and not knowing my experience has been the same!!! I have been told nothing at all. I've had to learn as much as I can by myself!!! Everyone's panicking now because my colon is inflamed hence the treatment I'm starting!! So you can't afford to leave things as they are if your not happy with it. Your disease won't wait!! Just fight for yourself.

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The fodmap diet is really good. I found diary,chocolate and high fibre foods made symptoms worse. I find drinking green tea with a little bit of tumeric and honey helps. Fennel and peppermint teas afer eating are good aswell.

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Hi Brummie, thanks for replying. I'd cut out milk but have been eating chocolates every day as we were bought loads for Christmas & I have no will power! This will try & cut out the chocolate to see if it makes s difference. Xx

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Ps - what is it in chocolate that causes the flares - is it the dairy?

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Hi, I know what you mean about having no will power! You want to be able to enjoy it without the consequences afterwards.

I'm not exactly sure what's in the chocolate to make it worse, but I find milk chocolate the worse offender. Try dark chocolate (I know it's bitter but you can get different flavours) or carob chocolate-dariy free alternative. Swap them from normal chocolate.and keep a food diary of the results x

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Hi, I have coeliac as well and find that if I have eaten something gluteny then a couple of days later I get a flare. Maybe keeping a good diary may help?

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