It's my birthday week. And those of you who are on my Facebook friends list, know why I take a week.
I'm so forgetful that I figure I might notice my birthday more if I celebrate the week surrounding it. Hopefully, you all follow suit with this idea. It's fun and we deserve more than one day a year to celebrate ourselves and all our accomplishments. Even if the only thing we accomplish is getting out of bed. ::grins::
So enough about me. Without further ado...I'll hit the mail.
I have IBS like you and my flares make them worse. I can't take both at the same time. Any ideas?
I do have some ideas but really we need to find out what is causing your upset. Are you going through more stress than usual? Are you taking more medication?
I'm going to make a few assumptions here. With bad flare-ups we tend to take more pills. More pills means that our digestive tract be bombarded. There's a whole bunch of medical jargon to sift through involving liver function etc. but suffice it to say that what you're taking through your flare-up might be making your IBS worse.
I've read a bunch of reports that talk about aspirin and tylenol and other acetaminophen products playing havoc with the belly but in my case, I can trace almost every bad IBS episode (and I'm talking extremely bad...don't want to leave the house here) to ibuprofen.
Why? I have a few theories. One: I took a lot more of this medication than I should have right after my pregnancy (4 pills every four hours) and when I was first diagnosed with Fibro and advised to take a 3 pill dose every four to six hours by my doctor.
I've stated before (and I apologize if I sound like a skipping CD here) that Fibro patients are known to adapt to their medications and also to become sensitive to them. Something that never bothered us before can one day...drive us crazy, make us itch, make us feel sick...worsen our IBS.
Some things to try:
During the days of your flares...eat lighter. My favorite thing to do when I notice my stomach becoming upset is to start eating soft. I drink green tea with a bit of the splenda with fiber to try to toughen the stool but I "eat soft". Chicken noodle soup, flavored applesauce snacks with reduced sugar, basmati rice with baked chicken (the soft juicy dark meat) and some yo plus vanilla (Best yogurt EVER lol). I eat like I have Gastroenteritis again, giving my digestive tract a chance to heal while still getting to eat.
We often forget about how hard a flare-up hits the rest of our body. We baby tender muscles and joint stiffness and pain but still eat Doritos and broccoli and...for me...Taco Bell.
Give all parts of your body time to heal.
Vitamins can also be a contributing factor. Try to get liquid vitamins when you can.
Also, unless otherwise specified, try to take medication around a meal to help with digestion of pills and vitamins.
Stress is another major factor in both IBS and Fibro. Nothing new there. Find a pastime that can soothe your nerves or find something that inspires you. For me.. Planet Earth the DVD series. I'm reminded of hardships and that life...beautiful life...always moves forward. I also like to think about the saying "this too, shall pass".
Whatever you can find that brings you even a modicum of peace, use it! Bring down those stress levels and those depression bouts that we all are subjected to almost daily.
I truly wish I had a definite answer as to how to make the terrible duo of Fibro Flare and IBS go away. The day I master it, I will shout it to the world, but these tips, small as they are, have helped me.
-give your bowels time to heal after a medication surge.
-eat soft, eat plain.
-take as little medication for flares as you can stand, and look for liquid vitamins.
-find personal inspiration to lose yourself to. Heal the mind...help the body.
Make sure you're keeping a food diary as well so you can find out if any particular foods or medications are causing your flare-ups to worsen. Food allergies can develop and attack when we least expect it.
My best to you, Barb, and the rest of my Fibro Mates.
Hope everyone is having 98% pain free days!