If you've recently been diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), you may be reluctant to immediately resort to anti-diarrheal medications or a regular course of laxatives to try to decrease the occasional bloating, constipation, and diarrhea you may be experiencing. These medications can often have unwanted side effects that may even overpower your regular symptoms, making it difficult to find a medication regimen that leaves you feeling better. What can you do to treat your IBS without taking medication? Read on to learn more about some alternative treatments and therapies that can help you manage your IBS symptoms and keep this diagnosis from disrupting your life.
Often, IBS symptoms may present themselves after you've consumed certain classes of foods -- gluten, eggs, tree nuts, and other common allergens can all present problems to your gastrointestinal tract, even if you don't show any other allergy symptoms like hives or difficulty breathing. You may want to try an elimination diet in which you eliminate certain common allergens from your diet one by one to see if you notice any difference in your symptoms. If you truly want to test your reactions, introducing a food back into your diet after avoiding it for several weeks should cause instant and noticeable symptoms if you do have an allergy or intolerance.
Even if you don't have a food allergy or intolerance causing your IBS symptoms, your body may benefit from a reorganization of the bacteria in your gut. Probiotics, whether in pill form or those found in yogurt and certain other dairy products, can help eliminate the bacteria causing many of your symptoms and reduce much of your bloating and diarrhea. If you find yourself reluctant to be anywhere too far from a bathroom, probiotics can also help you develop a more regular schedule that will prevent the sudden and urgent need for a restroom while in public.
Although you may associate chiropractic adjustments with neck and spinal injuries, this treatment can also benefit IBS sufferers. Each of the nerves associated with the digestive system begin in the lower spine, so adjusting any misaligned vertebrae and removing restrictions on the spinal cord can help improve circulation to your digestive system and even decrease cramping or constipation. If you seek out a chiropractor who specializes in the treatment of IBS and other digestive disorders, you may be able to notice a decrease in your symptoms after a single visit.