I think I have IBS but I'm scared to get it sorted out

So it began around January of 2016. I began having severe diarrhoea and pretty much the other symptoms of IBS. My family became aware and I ended up going to doctors before being referred to a clinic where I had to have a barium drink, but it didn't show anything on the X-ray. I know this is stupid, but what I hated most was when the doctor had to stick a camera up my ass. It was the most uncomfortable thing I've gone through.

Since that day, even though I've still had bad diarrhoea, I've chosen to ignore it. I know it's not at all the right thing to do, but I began to hide my symptoms from my family because I was too scared to go any further in recovery. At first it seemed like wheat-based cereals were the main trigger, but nowadays I try to keep a food diary and it seems like there's next to nothing that I can get away with eating or drinking before my bowel flares up and I have to go to the toilet again.

In September of 2016 I left home to begin my first year at university. I'm still here and have done nothing to get the problem sorted. It's easy to hide it from my family now, even though I know that's not the just thing to do. But I will have to go back for the summer holidays and then I'm living with four friends from uni next year.

In short, it's a nightmare. I was able to live a good life for about 18 years and then seemingly out of nowhere this came along. I know it wasn't the morally correct thing to choose to cover it up, but the fact of the matter is I am too fearful of what I will have to go through to get it sorted out. I don't know what help or responses I expect on here, but any words of advice would be massively appreciated because I have had enough of this torture.

5 Replies

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  • You sound as if it it causing you a lot of stress/anxiety, which in turn will make ibs flare for many people.

    Also wheat is in so many things that you dont necessarily consider. It might be worth you looking into a paleo diet, where you cut down to the bare bones basic food and gradually reintroduce to see if that throws up a possible cause. But i think it should be discussed with a dietician or your dr to see if might be an option.

  • Morals have nothing to do with it. Butt stuff can be embarrassing. But you know what - get yourself a gastroenterologist. They went to school because they love that stuff and they look at butts, and hear about people's poos all day every day. Yours will be one of hundreds. The more you open up and talk about it, the easier it is for folks to start to understand some of your current limitations. Some people won't 'get it', but I find honesty and directness helps.

    For school, see if you can get a note for academic accommodations. Maybe you can write in a supervised room where you can leave and use the loo. Maybe you can have extra time. Or alternative assignments. It doesn't hurt to ask, but be prepared with some suggestions.

    Food, stress and symptom diary is key. The FODMAPS diet worked well for me to understand some of my triggers, but I'd do it under doctor or dietician supervision. Immodium works in a pinch to stop diarrhea. And try some gentle yoga - good for stretching the innards out, and good for reducing stress which can be a trigger.

    Keep posting. We're here to help. Hope you feel better

  • I was 65 when diagnosed with IBS !!

    You must try and do your own intolerance testsby leaving obe food group, like daity, out of your diet for at least 2/3 weeks keeping a foid and symptom diary to monitor any changes there might be

    I have recently become intolerant of soya which I was using as a replacement for dairy - it's taken me a week of no soya to get improvement in symptoms

    You must also see a doctor as having diahorrea for so long will make you dehydrated

  • I think it is the STRESS of starting Uni that has kicked this off for you - however two things that will definitely help you is Silicolgel take it BEFORE your Main meal - I find once a day to be fine altho' it says three times a day (too expensive for that - tho' cheaper on Amazon!) Also do you take Imodium, that will help and can be bought in any Supermarket (they also do their own Brand which is just as good, and cheaper) take as per the packet, both these things should help you manage the IBS.

    I do feel for you as you are so young, its bad enough having it when you are old like me!! I also take Phenergan, this can be bought in any Chemist, its a Travel Sickness Pill and Hayfever Pill but also has a small amount of sedative, one before bedtime will give you a good nights sleep and also keep your stomach 'calm' the next day and stop you worrying so much about anything and everything!! I assume you are not on any other medications that might affect what I have suggested. Good luck!

  • Hi. No need to have others poke you nor involve your family (it sounds as if you detest the helplessness and the other people influencing you the most).

    Instead how about some research on the digestive system as is? It is mighty interesting. As a subject apart from your current daily toilet things. I'm sure in just a few days you run into some topics you'd want to experiment on for yourself. Hours even!

    For example did you know there's a sequence of acid-base-acid-base going through the whole tract? Starting at the exit of the stomach: if the food stuff isn't acid enough the duodenum will reject it and the wall movement REVERSES, putting stuff back into the stomach. (without enough acid the bile won't flow and the stuff will upset the duodenum and small intestines greatly).

    How the movements are governed is a whole other subject. Neurotransmitters in the colon! Dopamine for slowing down, serotonin for speeding up. Of course you know that in the head Dopamine = focus-hormone and Serotonin = happy-hormone. It works from head to gut too. That's why one of the side effects of Anti-Depressives is loose stool. They even cured a guy with Crohn's by just balancing his amino acids for these two neurotransmitters. He had diarroeah and inflammation beyond believe, for 18 years. Too much serotonin they concluded. Here's the case study if you want to get all scientific: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articl...

    I started with just reading basic biology on the net, to learn about the GI tract, and have now cured the majority of my digestive problems. Haven't had a camera up my bum yet.

    Am interested in a 3D image of my colon though and am aiming towards an x-ray with barium but without camera. Camera's are good for inspecting the condition of the walls only. They can't tell about the shape of the colon, the length or restrictions (much). There's an array of different tests and only if the inside of the walls needs to be monitored is a camera warranted. Your test probably showed no inflammations (like Crohn's) and there's no need to repeat that test any time soon. There are other reasons a person can has IBS-D and an imbalance between dopamine and serotonin is one of them. (That's why stress is important. Not just the hush,hush,darling-part but the actual physical part. The HPA axis in the body, the work of dr. Selye, cortisol and stomach acid, cortisol and inflammation. But let's start with GI first.)

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