IBS Doesn’t Work at Work

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This post was sponsored by IM HealthScience. 

What to do when you have to poo?

People who suffer from IBS often struggle with debilitating symptoms that seriously effect their ability to work and maintain a productive lifestyle. The thing about IBS, is the symptoms are not sexy, and often embarrassing for the individual suffering from them. So they may have a hard time explaining to their boss and colleagues why they’re missing so much work, or why when they are at work, they’re distracted and not at their best.

IBS sufferers take more time off work, spend more days in bed, and cut down on usual activities on more days com-pared with non-IBS sufferers. This survey found that almost one-quarter of IBS respondents work less hours, 11% miss work entirely and 67% feel less productive when at work due to symptoms. Two-thirds of existing IBS sufferers have had to reduce the number of normal activities they previously en-joyed participating in the last 12-month period for an average of 15 days. We’ve compiled a list of symptoms to help you understand what someone with IBS is going through, while simultaneously dealing with that micro-manging boss always breathing down their necks! If you find you have some of these symptoms, it might be a good idea to talk to your doctor about possible treatment options, which we will cover later in this article.

IBS Symptoms

IBS, unfortunately, does not get the recognition and awareness that it deserves, especially considering the fact that 7% to 21% of the general population is effected by this chronic illness.

Some symptoms to look out for:

  • Abdominal pain (cramping): IBS pain can be felt anywhere throughout the abdomen. Each bout of pain can vary in length and severity, and pain may increase and decrease over time. IBS pain is often relieved following a bowel movement.
  • Constipation: Symptoms of constipation can include passing three or fewer stools in one week, passing hard, dry stools, the passage of only small amounts of stool, and frequent straining during a bowel movement.
  • Diarrhea: Symptoms of diarrhea can include passing stool three or more times per day, passing loose, watery stools or feeling an urgent need to have a bowel movement.
  • Motility (movement of contents through the intestines): Normally, waves of coordinated intestinal muscle contractions (peristalsis transport digested food through the intestines. In people with IBS, the rhythm and coordination of these contractions may be altered. This altered motor function can result in the bowel moving too quickly (causing diarrhea or too slowly (causing constipation and can lead to spasm and pain.
  • Sensitivity (how the brain interprets signals from the intestinal nerves): The network of nervessurrounding the digestive organs may become unusually sensitive. For some people with IBS, even a small change in intestinal activity can trigger the nerves to send messages to the brain causing abdominal pain.
  • Brain-gut dysfunction: In IBS, there may be problems in how the brain receives and processes sensationscoming from the intestines. A malfunction may occur along the many different pathways that connect the brain and gut, interfering with the normal function of the intestines.
  • Other IBS symptoms may include: 
    • Gas
    • Heartburn
    • Bloating
    • Nausea
    • A feeling of incomplete emptying of the bowels
    • Whitish mucus (a fluid made in the intestines) within or around the stools

Many aspects of everyday living can trigger or aggravate IBS symptoms. Triggers vary from person to person, but the most common ones include certain foods, medications, emotional stress and hormone fluctuations. In particular, foods such as caffeine, alcohol, carbonated drinks, fatty foods, certain fruits and vegetables, as well as lactose, fructose and gluten (wheat protein can cause problems for people with IBS. So pretty much all of the things that are common practice for people with busy work lives.

Sounds brutal. How do you fix it?

There are many ways to treat IBS, and we cover a lot of them here, but despite our growing understanding of the disease, we have yet to develop a targeted treatment option that guarantees success. Treating IBS is usually a bit of process, where the patient needs to work with a combination of life-style changes, specialized diet plans, as well as over the counter and prescribed medications until they find a combo that’s right for them. After all, wellness is a personal journey, and everyone is different. This process can be emotionally taxing and frustrating as the results are often not immediate, and long term compliance to a variety of treatment plans is necessary for results. However, there is hope!

New Treatment Option:

Recently, IBgard, has successfully gone through two clinical trials: Irritable Bowel SyndromeReduction Evaluation and Safety Trial (IBSREST), as well as theIBS Adherence and Compliance Trial (IBSACT). Close to 80% of Patients with moderate to severe IBS who participated showed a high rate of improvement in symptoms.

IBgard is a capsule filled with triple-coated micro-spheres of l-Menthol (which is just a fancy-pants way for saying concentrated peppermint). Peppermint has historically been used for digestive disorders, as it’s soothing properties help relax muscles, reduce hypersensitivity, and take a serious edge off the pain. IBgard has been designed so that it waits until it has made it into the small bowel to dissolve, effectively avoiding the potential risk of indigestion that sometimes accompanies a high intake of peppermint.

Once in the small intestine, this little IBS fighter gets right to work! IBgard has undergone these rigorous clinical trials and have been cleared for both safety and efficacy. The results have been overwhelmingly positive in the test groups, with 61% of patients needing only 1-2 capsules to begin relieving IBS symptoms, including abdominal pain.

Ain’t nobody got time for that!

Day to day life can be hectic and stressful even without having to deal with the debilitating symptoms of IBS. Though IBgard is not a cure for this chronic condition, it can possibly help you manage the daily pain you struggle through and make it easier for you to do things like go to work, and live your best life on your days off. Talk to your doctor and see if peppermint oil is a viable option for you, and get back to just doing you! If you’re interested in giving IBgard a try, you can also print out a coupon for your first purchase here.

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