IBD vs IBS

IBD vs IBS

Despite many people suffering from either IBD or IBS, there is some confusion between the two. Irritable bowel syndrome, IBS, is the less severe of the two conditions, affecting the mainly the colon or rectum. It is non-life-threatening and does not increase one’s risk of other more serious conditions such as colitis, Crohn’s disease, or colon cancer. It is important to note that bleeding or black stool is not a symptom of IBS. Irritable bowel disease, IBD, is generally considered to be more severe and refers to a variety of bowel-related diseases including Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and others.

IBD Diseases

  • Crohn’s disease

  • Ulcerative colitis

  • Enteritis

  • Ileitis

  • Proctitis

Crohn’s Disease

Crohn’s disease is a chronic inflammation of the bowel that can even cause ulceration. Crohn’s disease typically affects the lower small intestine but can affect nearly all parts of the bowel, even interrupting diseased tissue with healthy tissue. People with Crohn’s are also often more prone to fistulas and abscesses due to the disease’s effect on the entire thickness of the bowel wall.

  • Chronic diarrhea

  • Weight loss

  • Fever

  • Abdominal pain or tenderness most often in the right lower quadrant

  • Feeling of a mass or fullness in the right lower quadrant

Crohn’s Disease Treatment

There is, unfortunately, no cure for Crohn’s disease, but there are multiple ways to manage the condition. Crohn’s can often have flares of more severe symptomology. You can take steps to control and reduce flares by practicing elimination dieting. Elimination dieting should always involve your doctor and includes recognizing and avoiding trigger foods to cut back on flare occurrences and reduce the severity of flares when they occur. In addition to lifestyle and diet management, there are a number of traditional ways to control Crohn’s.

  • Prescribed medications – Antibiotics, Aminosalicylates, Corticosteroids, Immune modifiers, and Biologic therapies

  • OTC medications – Antidiarrheals, Pain relievers (There is some controversy as to whether those with Crohn’s should avoid NSAIDs or not), and nutritional supplements

  • Surgery – Strictureplasty, Resection, Colectomy/Proctocolectomy

Here at Thrive, our certified Functional Medicine (IFM) providers are accustomed to treating complex and intertwined health issues like Crohn’s Disease and other forms of IBD from a functional and preventative standpoint. Allow Thrive to play an integral part in your journey to optimal health and wellness in 2019!

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