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Anxiety and IBS Symptoms

Was diagnosed a year ago with IBS-d, also I have GAD. Can constantly worrying about my IBS symptoms really make them worse? Or is there possibly something else causing these flare-ups. They don't always last long, but can stop me from planning any outings etc. I get so overwhelmed with trying to find what I can do to feel better, that this causes me more stress..... I live alone and feel there's nobody I can turn to for advice. Would appreciate any help, I'm 69 yrs old and otherwise healthy.

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Hi Asenath,

I have had IBS-c/d for quite some time now as well as anxiety and I can tell you they go hand in hand. I was in the Army when I was diagnosed and I was basically sick for over 3 years before they even knew anything was wrong. This created a large void in my life and made my life miserable almost every day. It took up until a couple months ago until they found a great anxiety treatment for me and I started working on myself. I still have anxiety but it is not as bad and I still have the IBS but its very infrequent now. I am currently having a flare up that has been lasting a couple days now. Anxiety can definitely make it worse. I would suggest some great apps for the smartphone that help me when I am having trouble controlling my anxiety. One app is called Headspace, the others are 100% happier, Stop, Breath and think. Let me know if you have any questions. I am 32 years old and I have two kids and I am medically retired from the Army, Let me know if you need anything.

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Thank you organik05 for replying,even though you're suffering too. Is a couple of days about normal for a flare-up? or are we all different, sometimes I can just struggle for 4-6 hours, but I never know when it's going to happen. It helps to know about anxiety really affecting the symptoms, and thanks for the app suggestion,although I don't own a smartphone,perhaps I should try one as you say how helpful they are. I suppose I've been lucky in getting to be this age "Ibs free" for 68 years and you're still young to suffer with all this.

I wish you well organik05 hope you soon feel better,thank you for helping me.

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Asenath, I didn't have any issues until I got sick with an H pylori infection. After that, it destroyed my stomach and caused so many issues. My IBS-C/D is what gives me anxiety and since I have been controlling my anxiety my stomach hasn't been hurting as much. I still have my flare-ups. I had one the other day for 3-4 days and it was bad. When I have them they are really bad, sometimes to the point where I get really hot and feel like I am going to pass out. I sometimes even have to yell for my wife to get me a wet washcloth or towel to help with the problems. I have already eliminated Hyfructose Corn syrup and many other things to include red meat. We eat turkey and chicken mainly in the house. Please let me know if you need anything. The Army made my condition worse because they never thought anything was wrong with me and it took a lot to finally convince them that I was suffering and couldn't do certain things anymore.

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Hi organik05, nice to hear from you. I hope by now you're feeling a lot calmer,(in all areas) I've been Ok since we last spoke, I eliminated lactose.....huge 90% improvement,then I've avoided oats and oat based drinks, crackers/biscuits etc. and that jumped it up to 100%.Still able to eat roast beef once a week,so I'm a happy bunny! I also heard that the fodmap diet is very good, but you may need the help of a nutritionist, as to start with it's quite restrictive, but a good way to find out what you're sensitive to.Let me know if you've tried this diet as it is one I would do the next time I have flare-up. At the moment my anxiety is minimal so that could be another reason for my "freedom". My "freedom" could be the reason my anxiety is minimal. Chicken or egg situation eh?

Wishing you well organik05.

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I have just been told by my GP she thinks I have IBS due to anxiety. Im having some other tests now, but it makes sense to me. Ive had a really tough couple of years where my dad was diagnosed with cancer and then lost his battle on 22nd December. Every time I had to do hospital trips etc I was always worrying where the toilet was. Now I feel that where ever I go I need to know where the toilet is. Trouble now is that the next appointment they had to see a GP isn't until 10th July. I'm trying to go back to work on Monday after having a week off. But still very tired.

Anxiety sucks and I think the length of time of a flare up can vary. This time mine was almost a week. But before I usually just go for a few hours. The doctor thinks I've managed to pic up a virus which triggered it initially and then my anxiety made it worse.

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Thank you for your reply Scw86, I feel for you, I lost my dad much the same way but a long time ago now. The stress and anxiety takes its toll doesn't it? I'm sorry to hear you're suffering right now, but hopefully you will have some calmer times soon.

I have reacted positively to the replies on here and today I'm feeling Ok!

There are people who are a lot worse off than me on here but they soldier on,giving advice to the rest of us, for that I will be forever grateful. It puts everything into perspective don't you agree?

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Oh yes definitely. Perspective is a good thing.

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