IBS urgency: Hi, I am hoping someone has some... - IBS Network

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IBS urgency

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Hi, I am hoping someone has some ideas to help me out because my IBS has become really difficult to deal with! My main problem is with the urgency in which I need to go to the toilet. As soon as I feel the need to go to the toilet I have to go, I seem to have lost the ability to wait since having my son two years ago (this is exactly when the problem started) this is now causing me to become really anxious about things, I try to avoid situations where I either don’t feel comfortable using the toilet or anywhere I’m not sure if there is a toilet because I feel i am totally unable to control my bowels. I am usually a very confident outgoing person but I can see this changing me as I am always thinking about where the toilet is and what I would do if I needed to go! Now I find it I am in a situation where I know I can’t go to the toilet, for example a meeting at work, I’ll almost certainly need to go because I’ve worked myself into such a state! Please, if anyone has any ideas on how I can control this I would be more than grateful!

4 Replies

Hello, I am sorry you are having this problem. It seems to be making you very anxious which will make it worse. If you think this is related to the birth of your son, have you had any pelvic floor exercises to help things get back into place? I think you have good reason to go and get this all checked out, initially by approaching your GP as it is clearly affecting your life.

On a slightly different topic, and I have mentioned this in a previous post, before I retired I worked in a small office where one colleague had colitis and another was coeliac and I had what was thought to be IBS. A good thing about this group was that everyone was completely open about their gut issues. This eliminated any embarrassment about sitting in a meeting gurgling away, and everyone knew that from time to time we may need to leave a meeting quickly. None of us had the tension of trying to hide the problem. It really made a difference that everyone accepted our problems and we were all treated 'normally'. If you can, try to be open about your bowel issues (no pun intended) with a trusted colleague or line manager so they can make allowances if you do need to leave the room. These things are so common now, it is time we started talking about them and ditched the taboos around gut issues.

I do hope you get it sorted. I sometimes find taking a loperamide is helpful before I go out, just as a bit of peace of mind.

Yep. You have the classic symptoms of stress related IBS. According to my Gastro, this is a sign of the Gatrocolic Reflex switch going on when it shouldn't and the normal gut contractions become too strong pushing stuff out under pressure. Hence the urgency. As the Vagal Nerve controls the GCR stress can cause or make it worse. Of course if your urgency doesn't result in your poop near shooting out of you, it may be more to do with a muscle floor thing related to your giving birth. But a doctor visit would be a good first idea.

I am a lot older than you and I really feel for you. I have had that problem for years and it is dreadful. Walking stimulates the bowel. What I do now I don’t eat before I walk, I wait until I return. I am having a lot of probs since Xmas but today 2nd January so all goodies gone back to plain food. Good luck to you try eating plain. I also take 1 Alflorax daily for about 2 months, stop for month then resume. My gastroenterologist put me in these.

Hello. I really feel for you as I have been living with the urgency issue for some years. I have to go 'now' when it hits. It must be particularly difficult for you with a small child to too. As others have suggested it might be worth checking out whether you have any post birth issues. Taking an imodium before going out might help, especially on days when you have a meeting. I used to sit near the door in meetings at work so it was easier to slip out.(I was on an interviewing panel once and had to run out). Also try sipping water instead of tea or coffee in meetings. Codeine phosphate helps some people. I manage by knowing where all the toilets are, which includes any on a journey e.g. passing a cafe, pub or doctor's surgery. Also any quiet side roads or lay byes. Some toilets are not so private, or unexpectedly closed, or people start knocking on the door. I keep a small scented deodorising air spray in my bag and spare clothes in my car boot. It's so tempting to avoid going out so it's worth trying anything which helps you to feel more confident. My confidence fluctuates a lot, but I try to pick myself up after each bout and try to have a full life. My latest plan is a very basic camping toilet arrangement in the well in the back of my (small) hatchback. Hopefully wouldn't need to use it, but just knowing it is there is a comfort. Hopefully you will find some other tips on this site as well as some support.

Good luck. Katerina1

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