Will Ulcerative Colitis Affect Me Over Time
The effects of ulcerative colitis vary considerably from person to person, based on the nature and severity of their disease. In many cases, the condition does not have much impact on daily life, the ability to work or to enjoy an active social life but does take some getting used to. When it is at an active stage, symptoms such as diarrhoea and abdominal pain often require time away from work, college etc. and can make it difficult to cope going out or even being at home. However, treatment usually makes the symptoms better within days or weeks so normal quality of life can be restored quite quickly. Some severe cases of ulcerative colitis, however, can have a significant impact on peoples lives. This can be due to a weak response to treatment which makes symptom-free remission difficult to achieve and can involve frequent flare ups.
How To Calm An Ulcerative Colitis Flare
This article was co-authored by Peter Gardner, MD. Peter W. Gardner, MD is a board certified physician who has practiced Gastroenterology and Hepatology for over 30 years. He specializes in diseases of the digestive system and liver. Dr. Gardner earned his Bachelors degree from the University of North Carolina and attended Georgetown Medical School. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine and then his fellowship in Gastroenterology at the University of Connecticut. He is a previous Chief of Gastroenterology at Stamford Hospital and remains on the staff. He is also on the staff of Greenwich Hospital and New York Presbyterian Hospital. Dr. Gardner is an Approved Consultant in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology with the American Board of Internal Medicine.There are 8 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 100% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 14,663 times.
Plan A Relaxing Activity
Whether with your partner, friend, or family, planning a relaxing activity like a couples massage, manicure/pedicure, or other spa-like treatment can work wonders on your fatigue. Or, if you prefer, plan an activity like watching a movie with a close friend. Taking time to do something relaxing and slow-paced still provides you with time to be with your friend or loved one but doesnt become too taxing for you. And your friend could probably use a relaxing activity, too!
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Diet Recommendations For Ulcerative Colitis Flare
- Follow a low residue diet to relieve abdominal pain and diarrhea.
- Avoid foods that may increase stool output such as fresh fruits and vegetables, prunes and caffeinated beverages.
- Try incorporating more omega-3 fatty acids in your diet. These fats may have an anti-inflammatory effect. They are found in fish, including salmon, mackerel, herring and sardines.
- Patients often find that smaller, more frequent meals are better tolerated. This eating pattern can help increase the amount of nutrition you receive in a day.
- Consider taking nutritional supplements if appetite is poor and solid foods are not tolerated well .
When To Call The Doctor
- Cramps or pain in your lower stomach area
- Bloody diarrhea, often with mucus or pus
- Diarrhea that cannot be controlled with diet changes and drugs
- Rectal bleeding, drainage, or sores
- Fever that lasts more than 2 or 3 days, or a fever higher than 100.4Â°F without an explanation
- Nausea and vomiting that lasts more than a day
- Skin sores or lesions that do not heal
- Joint pain that keeps you from doing your everyday activities
- A feeling of having little warning before you need to have a bowel movement
- A need to wake up from sleeping to have a bowel movement
- Failure to gain weight, a concern for a growing infant or child
- Side effects from any drugs prescribed for your condition
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Examination Of The Antioxidative Mechanism Of The Si
Si-based agent suppressed the intestinal oxidation associated UC via antioxidant sulfur compounds. Sulfur index analysis of the mouse large intestine. The average bar graphs for the expression of glutathione, oxidized glutathione, and each persulfide . White: control or con-DSS group black: Si or Si-DSS group. Contributory compounds in sulfur-index analysis. The dot graph of individual values and the average for sulfur index analysis. Data are expressed as mean±SEM of six mice per group. p< 0.08, *p< 0.05, **p< 0.01, determined by Students paired t-test.
Other Ulcerative Colitis Symptoms
Ulcerative colitis causes rectal and abdominal pain, but its not the only condition that does . UC pain is chronic, meaning its either continuous or flares up repeatedly over time.
Chronic gut pain isnt the only symptom of UC though, and if youre experiencing it with the following seek out a medical professional:
- A noisy/rumbling gut
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Open Up To Friends And Family
If youre feeling too tired to go to a relatives birthday party, for example, be honest about it. Parris says she hid her fatigue from family and friends for a long time because she was embarrassed. But after I shared what I was going through, they were really supportive, she says. Plus, it made me stop looking like a flake when I couldnt go out. They understood the real reason instead of me having to try and make up an excuse.Speaking up about her ulcerative colitis allowed Parris to help her friends and relatives better understand what she was going through so that they could be more supportive.
What Is Uc Cramping
Abdominal pain and cramping from UC is most commonly caused by the conditions inflammatory process, according to Christina Ha, MD, a gastroenterologist at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Such inflammation usually starts at the rectum and moves throughout the large colon. The greater the inflammation, the more severe the pain.
Ulcerative colitis and Crohns disease pain locations are different, even though both of these conditions are classified as inflammatory bowel diseases . Also, the nature and location of pain vary from one person to the next.
This article explores Crohns and ulcerative colitis pain locations and types, what pain in different parts of the abdomen may mean, and how Crohns and ulcerative colitis pain locations can help with a diagnosis.
Jessica Olah / Verywell
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Side Effect: Weight Gain
A study published in Obesity shows that nearly 20% of Americans take a prescription medication that can cause them to gain weight. Additionally, the University of Rochester Medical Center reports that six types of drugs are known to cause patients to pack on the pounds, including steroids and antidepressants prescribed to those with UC. Overall, drug-related weight gain results from several factors, including appetite stimulation, changes in metabolism, water retention, and fatigue that prevents you from exercising.
Though it may seem as if the digestive issues related to UC would cause you to lose weight, the opposite is true for some patients. In addition to medication side effects, MedicalNewsToday attributes weight increase to difficulty consuming certain foods and trouble exercising due to pain and discomfort from the disease.
According to an article published in Nutrients, a healthy diet is one in which you eat just enough carbohydrates, proteins, and fats to provide the energy you need, along with the vitamins and minerals your body needs for physiologic functioning. Since those with UC often avoid high-fiber foods , MedicalNewsToday recommends eating smaller meals more frequently. You should also walk for exercise, maintain portion control, and ensure proper calorie consumption by using a food diary.
Poor Growth And Development
Ulcerative colitis, and some of the treatments for it, can affect growth and delay puberty.
Children and young people with ulcerative colitis should have their height and body weight measured regularly by healthcare professionals.
This should be checked against average measurements for their age.
These checks should be carried out every 3 to 12 months, depending on the persons age, the treatment theyre having and the severity of their symptoms.
If there are problems with your childs growth or development, they may be referred to a paediatrician .
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Surgery For Ulcerative Colitis
Surgery can eliminate ulcerative colitis but it typically means removal of the entire colon or rectum. Removing all or part of the rectum and colon is usually reserved for severe cases or ones presenting serious complications, says Dr. Englander. In some cases, the surgeon will remove the colon and rectum, then create a J-pouch from the small intestine that acts like a new rectum. Other times, the digestive systems might be connected to an external pouch that collects stool for the patients to dispose of.
Whats A Good Plan To Manage Uc Cramping
Monitor your medications. Talk to your doctor about any prescription, over-the-counter, or herbal medications youre taking. Iron deficiency is common with UC, but oral iron supplements have been shown to increase the risk of inflammation and cramping. Some antibiotics and pain relievers, such as ibuprofen, may also increase flare-ups and cramping.
Review your diet.Keep a food diary and note the connection between the foods you eat and your UC symptoms. In general, its smart to stay away from processed foods and those high in saturated fat and sugar. High-fiber foods and dairy products can also cause UC cramping, but check with your doctor before eliminating foods from your diet, to ensure youre getting the nutrients you need.
Eat frequent, small meals. Instead of two or three large meals, eat four to six smaller meals spaced more closely throughout the day. Also, take your time while eating and chew thoroughly.
Skip caffeine and carbonated drinks. Caffeine can cause gas, intensifying abdominal cramping. It is also a stimulant, which can make cramping and diarrhea worse.
Drink enough water. People with UC may be at increased risk of dehydration, so be sure to drink plenty of H2O. A good rule of thumb, according to the Crohns and Colitis Foundation, is to aim for about 64 ounces or eight 8 oz glasses per day.
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Effective Herbs In Ayurveda For Ulcerative Colitis
The following herbs used to get relief from ulcerative colitis:
Kutaz is a wonderful herb which has a power to stop all sort of diarrheas. It acts as an anti-oxidant, which helps to remove the toxins from the body. This herb helps to stop the inflammation and heals ulcers. It also helps to improve the functioning of the digestive system. Being ruksha, tikta, kashaaye and sheeta, it helps to balance the pitta dosha in the body.
Bilva is one of the main ingredients of the Dashmoola dravya. It has an anti-inflammatory property that helps to heal ulcers. This herb is very well known as traditionally.
Giloy satva is very beneficially in balancing the Pitta dosha in the body. It helps to remove the toxins from the body, hence act as an anti-oxidant. It also provides the immune strength to the body system. It helps to reduce the inflammation.
Vasaka vasicine is one of the extracts obtained from the plant which contains medicinal properties. It helps to reduce the pitta dosha in the body, hence balance all doshas in the body. It is also helpful in controlling the bleeding. Overall, Vasaka provides strength to the immune system.
Arjuna is kashaya, katu, rooksha and sheeta properties. It is very effective for curing ulcers and also helps to improve the count of red blood cells in the body.
Sheesham is another herb which is very helpful to reduce the inflammation and heals the ulcers. It helps to stop the bleeding and diarrhea. It acts as an anti-oxidant and analgesic.
What Other Conditions Can Cause Abdominal Pain
There are dozens of conditions that can cause pain and cramping in the abdomen. Conditions that are sometimes confused with IBD are:7,8
- Stomach irritation
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
Irritable bowel syndrome is a functional disorder. It causes similar symptoms as inflammatory bowel disease, including pain and cramping. However, irritable bowel syndrome does not damage the intestine the way Crohns disease does.
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Urgency To Pass A Stool
Not only will the stool consistency change if you have ulcerative colitis, but the urge to pass could hit suddenly and strongly even though nothing comes out. If you have inflammation in the rectum, you have this sense of needing to get rid of something, even though its not there, says Dr. Englander.
What Role Does Diet And Nutrition Play In Ulcerative Colitis
Diet does not cause the development of ulcerative colitis nor can any special diet cure the disease. However, the foods you or your child eat may play a role in managing symptoms and lengthening the time between flareups.
Some foods may make symptoms worse and should be avoided, especially during flareups. Foods that trigger symptoms are different from person to person. To narrow down what foods affect you, keep track of what you eat each day and how you feel afterward .
Problem foods often include:
- High sugar foods and drinks.
- Carbonated beverages.
- High-fiber foods.
In addition to the problem foods listed above, infants, children and teenagers can also experience issues with:
- Dairy products.
Keep a careful eye on your childs diet and nutrition. Their appetite may decrease during a flareup and they might not eat enough to stay healthy, and grow. Also, the inflammation caused by ulcerative colitis may keep their digestive tract from absorbing enough nutrients. This can also affect your childs health. For these reasons, you may have to increase the amount of calories your child consumes.
Its best to work with your provider and nutritionist to come up with a personalized diet plan if you or your child has ulcerative colitis.
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Personal Stories About Surgery To Cure Ulcerative Colitis
These stories are based on information gathered from health professionals and consumers. They may be helpful as you make important health decisions.
I have suffered from some really bad symptoms from ulcerative colitis. The diarrhea and pain interrupt my life. I can’t go anywhere without checking out where all the bathrooms are. I don’t dare go on long hikes or go skiing, things I used to do all the time. It makes me depressed. I like the idea of having surgery so I don’t have to deal with this illness anymore.
Toni, age 33
The symptoms of ulcerative colitis can be painful and embarrassing, but I only get them a few times a year. My medicines control them really well. I don’t think my condition is bad enough for me to have surgery, and I don’t like the thought of having to use an ostomy bag. I think I will wait and see if my condition gets worse.
Carolyn, age 40
I want to have surgery, because I’m scared of getting colon cancer. I had an uncle who had colon cancer. My risk is already higher than average because I have ulcerative colitis. Besides, I’ve had this disease for 7 years. In another year, I have to start having an annual colonoscopy to check for cancer. If I have surgery, I won’t have to deal with symptoms or be tested every year and worry about colon cancer.
Bill, age 27
Juan, age 30
Side Effect: Mood Swings
Health Navigator reports that ten different types of medications can affect your mood, three of which are commonly prescribed to those with UC. However, it’s often difficult for your doctor to determine whether your mood swings are due to your medication or the ailment they’re meant to treat. This is especially true for those with UC, as there is no cure for the disease, and you never know how it will affect you daily .
Furthermore, a study published in The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology found that over 30% of those diagnosed with IBD showed signs of anxiety, and a similar number had symptoms of depression. The number increased to nearly half in those not in remission. Moreover, medical professionals associated with Clinical and Experimental Gastroenterology refer to a study that shows UC patients often display symptoms of depression before a relapse, and others that indicate that anxiety and depression contribute to UC flares.
If your moods are concerning, Health Navigator recommends that you speak to your doctor about changing doses or medications. However, it’s essential not to stop any medicine without talking to a physician, as that can worsen UC symptoms and mood swings. Some physicians also recommend seeing a therapist, learning relaxation techniques, and joining a support group to control your feelings .
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Give Yourself A Break
The fatigue you feel because of ulcerative colitis is much more severe than the tiredness a healthy person feels after a long day. Plus, its usually accompanied by other symptoms. If Im really tired, says Bogdan, I will also get nauseated. Says Parris, Going to the bathroom multiple times a day is tiring for anybody. Its basically like having the stomach flu 24/7.
Bogdan recommends that you listen to your body and rest when you need to. Dont push yourself, she says. If you sense a flare coming on, taking a break or a nap is a good idea, especially because it might help you feel better later. Dont feel that you have to keep up with everyone else, Bogdan says. You have a chronic illness that you have to manage.