Nearly a million people across the United States deal with the inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) called Ulcerative Colitis. A million others suffer from the other IBD, Crohn’s Disease. While not fatal by any stretch of the imagination, Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s can be quite uncomfortable to live with.
This piece will identify common symptoms associated with these inflammatory bowel diseases. This will include both causes and risk factors, along with the differences between the two. From there, treatment plans will be discussed as well as 10 steps to aid in relief.
Causes of Colitis & Crohn’s
Reports indicate that the exact cause of an IBD appears to be unknown at this point. Some believe that poor diet and unneeded stress may contribute to spurring up symptoms — though those ideas may be inconclusive at this time. Some doctors do believe that IBD may be hereditary in nature. As such, it may be more common in people with family members also possessing it.
Risks Factors Associated With Colitis & Crohn’s
Studies indicate that most people with Ulcerative Colitis don’t see any warning signs until after their 30th birthday. However, it can pop up essentially at any age (even into one’s later years). Studies also indicate that Caucasian people (specifically people of Ashkenazi Jewish heritage) may have a higher likelihood of having Ulcerative Colitis. For Crohn’s, most people who develop the disease are diagnosed before they are 30 years old.
Symptoms of Colitis & Crohn’s
There are a number of symptoms associated with these IBDs. Abnormal/consistent pain emanating from the rectum or abdomen could be a cause for concern. Persistent bloating and cramping within the abdominal region is normally a tell-tale sign. From there, gastrointestinal problems may pop up. Those with Colitis or Crohn’s often have a regular urge to poop. Duly, these people may also suffer from both constipation, or the common appearance of blood in one’s feces. Lastly, a combination of general fatigue and constant diarrhea are linked to IBD.
Difference Between Colitis & Crohn’s
There are 3 main differences between colitis and Crohn’s. First is location – colitis affects only the large intestine, Crohn’s can appear anywhere in the digestive tract, from the mouth to the anus. Second, those with Crohn’s have some healthy body parts between inflamed areas, while those with colitis suffer from continuous inflammation of the colon. Lastly, colitis only affects the inner most lining of the colon, while Crohn’s disease can occur in all layers of the bowel walls.
Steps To Aid Relief
1.) Reduce Inflammation – remove food sensitivities
2.) Treat Infection – gut lining bacteria, parasites, fungals such as colostrum
3.) Alkalize Gut – increase leafy greens for example
4.) Increase Fiber
5.) Restructure Diet – smaller meals and no late night snacking
6.) Ginger and Turmeric (try with honey) before meals
7.) Start L-Glutamine
8.) Replace Bifidobacterium
9.) Drink Kefir/Colostrum – aids leaky gut
10.) Fast for 3-5 Days – drink only liquid nutrition
Treatment for Colitis & Crohn’s
Fortunately, there are a number of treatment plans available. A diagnosis will come after extensive testing (blood tests, colonoscopy, stool sample, x-ray, etc.). For many, doctors will prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs. Inflammation often occurs in the intestine, and thus these drugs help to manage pain associated with the Colitis. Duly, some will take a mixture of antibiotics and over-the-counter pain relievers (such as Tylenol). Lastly — and in absolutely extreme cases — surgery will be done.
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