GI Specialists of Houston, LLP
Gastroenterology located in Baytown, TX & Houston, TX
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a long-term problem that requires careful management. If you have IBS, GI Specialists of Houston, LLP, can help. The practice has locations in Baytown, North Loop, Houston, and Humble, Texas, where the experienced gastroenterology team provides comprehensive IBS management programs that keep your symptoms in check. To benefit from their expertise, call the most convenient office of GI Specialists of Houston, LLP, or book an appointment online today.
IBS Management Q & A
What is IBS?
IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) is a gastrointestinal condition where you experience various unpleasant and uncomfortable symptoms such as:
- Frequent need for the toilet
- Abdominal pain
- Excessive gas
- Stomach cramps
These chronic symptoms can be exhausting, disrupting your work and home life and causing depression and anxiety. From a positive point of view, even if you have severe symptoms, IBS doesn't cause any harm to your gastrointestinal system and poses no risk to your life.
In contrast, the similar-sounding condition IBD (inflammatory bowel disease) causes significant changes to the digestive tract. There are two main forms of IBD: Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Both conditions can be disabling and may prove life-limiting; fortunately, this isn't the case with IBS.
What is IBS management?
IBS management aims to reduce your symptoms as much as possible to allow you to lead a more normal life. The team at GI Specialists of Houston, LLP, works with you to create a treatment plan that addresses your specific symptoms.
Numerous therapies can help with IBS, but they don't all work equally well for every patient. Your provider uses their experience and expertise to create the right combination for you.
IBS management requires your input as well as your provider's. For example, you need to keep a food diary in which you record everything you eat and the symptoms you experience. You can then identify the foods or drinks that trigger an IBS flare-up.
What might IBS management involve?
As well as identifying and avoiding trigger foods, your IBS management plan may also include medications. Various drugs can help treat the symptoms of IBS, including:
Antibiotics alter the balance of bacteria in your gut, which may relieve symptoms for up to six months in some patients.
Bulking agents like corn fiber and wheat bran reduce the speed at which food travels through your digestive system.
Live beneficial bacteria and yeasts can help to improve the health of your digestive system.
Constipation medications work in various ways. Some help you move your bowels more often, while others increase fluid levels in your gut or help retain water in your stools.
Diarrhea medications also work in different ways. For instance, bile acid sequestrants work in your intestines, binding with bile acids to reduce stool production. Other drugs reduce contractions in your bowel and help to remove water from your stools.
If you have IBS and are finding it hard to manage your symptoms, GI Specialists of Houston, LLP, can help with its comprehensive IBS management plans. Call the nearest office today to schedule a consultation or book an appointment online.
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