Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is chronic disorder of the digestive system which has been given more coverage in recent years, with 10-20 percent of people in Western countries fitting the diagnostic criteria at any given time. However, with no clear-cut cause nor course of treatment, IBS remains a largely misunderstood condition.
IBS is described as a “functional” disorder because the way the gut works is affected but there are no notable physical changes. The symptoms are unpleasant and variable and may include bloating, diarrhea, constipation, cramping and stomach pain. Nausea, headache, heartburn and loss of appetite may also feature. It is crucial to get a firm IBS diagnosis from your doctor, mainly to rule out more serious disorders.
So what triggers this disagreeable condition? The causes of IBS are not explicitly known but in all likelihood several factors including stress, diet, fluid intake, sleep pattern, exercise and previous stomach infections may be involved. More…