Treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

The treatment for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is focused on relieving the uncomfortable symptoms that may be so severe, they incumber the patient’s day to day lifestyle.


IBS can range from mild to severe in nature, and treatments differ as such. For instance, mild IBS often includes stress management techniques, as well as substantial changes to lifestyle and diet. Doctors may also recommend keeping a food journal to identify trigger foods, and then consciously avoiding foods that trigger your IBS symptoms (i.e.,  high gas foods, and gluten foods that contain fructose, fructans, lactose (or FODMAPs). An typical IBS diet may feature plenty of fluids to keep the body and bowels hydrated, foods rich in fiber, regular exercise, limited stress, and quality sleep. Three main elements that you need to ensure that you completely remove from your list are -. Getting on a diet plan with the help of a professional dietitian is one of the key components of your treatment so that your IBS is kept in check.


The basic treatment for IBS may include the following medications and lifestyle changes to  ease symptoms and prevent frequent IBS attacks, such as:


  1. Fiber supplements

Pills, such as psyllium, taken with water can go a long way in controlling the symptoms of IBS (i.e, constipation).


  1. Laxatives

In instances where fiber does not aid constipation, physicians may prescribe a laxative, such as polyethylene glycol (Miralax) or magnesium hydroxide oral (Milk of Magnesia).


  1. Anti-diarrheal medications

There are quite a few over the counter medications that can help you stop and control diarrhea. Although your physician may prescribe a bile acid liner medication, such as cholestyramine (Prevalite), colestipol (Colestid) or colesevelam (Welchol). Bile binder acid medications may possibly worsen bloating in some cases.


  1. Anticholinergic medications

Bowel spasms are painful and a common IBS symptom. Drugs to calm spastic bowels include dicyclomine (Bentyl), which reduces bouts of diarrhea. However, this medication may cause side effects such as constipation, dry mouth, and blurred vision.


  1. Tricyclic antidepressants

Anxiety and depression are largely linked to IBS, but medication may be required to relieve mental triggers and inhibit the brain neurons that impact the intestines. Medications such as imipramine (Tofranil), desipramine (Norpramin) or nortriptyline (Pamelor) may be prescribed to reduce drowsiness, blurred vision, dizziness, and dry mouth.


  1. SSRI antidepressants

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants, such as fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem) or paroxetine (Paxil), may help if you’re depressed and have a lot of pain and constipation.

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