How Chiropractic Can Improve the Lives of Those with IBS
Irritable bowel syndrome is a complex condition characterized by recurrent abdominal pain with altered bowel functions. IBS with constipation, called IBS-C, means the individual primarily has constipation as their altered bowel activity. IBS with diarrhea, or IBS-D, means the issue is diarrhea, whereas IBS-M means there is a mixed pattern of both diarrhea and constipation. Treatment generally depends on the form of IBS one has. Traditional medicine relies heavily on pharmaceutical interventions, which can be expensive and often have significant side effects. They also do not typically treat the underlying cause of IBS.
IBS has many contributing factors, from stress to dietary intake to genetics. Alterations in the gut biome, i.e., the multitudes of bacteria that colonize our guts and impact our health, and immune cell functions in the gut, such as mast cells and T cells, are both possible contributors to the development of this disorder. With a worldwide prevalence of between 7-20%, it is a serious problem for a great deal of people, many of whom have few options for meaningful relief.
Diagnosis of IBS
IBS is a diagnosis of exclusion, which means all other likely causes have been ruled out and the only remaining explanation is IBS. It requires there to be at least 3 days of each of the last 3 months in which the individual experienced a change in frequency or form of stool and abdominal pain or discomfort relieved by defecation. Sufferers may also complain of bloating, nausea and vomiting, and reflux.
Treatment for IBS is often aimed at the reduction of symptoms. For many, this begins with dietary changes, as many report that food intake influences the severity of their pain. Therefore a nutritionist may be helpful in creating a plan of care. Your Snellville Chiropractor, Dr. Dionne Anderson, can refer you to the correct individuals to complement your care. You may require additional lifestyle modifications, such as increased exercise and fluid intake.
How Can a Chiropractor Help?
Several studies have shown the efficacy of chiropractic care in the treatment of IBS, constipation, and diarrhea. This is because alterations in the alignment of the spinal cord contribute to increased stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system, creating a long-term stress response that leads to inflammation and altered function. Adjustments of the spine have been shown in studies to reduce the symptoms of IBS when done by a skilled and experienced chiropractor, such as Dr. Dionne Anderson.
Dr. Dionne Anderson at Hand and Heart Chiropractic can develop an individualized plan of care to restore your health and well-being. Contact Hand and Heart Chiropractic in Snellville today to make an appointment and learn more about how chiropractic can help you.
Patel, N., Shackelford, K. (2022). Irritable Bowel Syndrome. In: StatPearls [Internet]. StatPearls Publishing. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK534810/
Angus, K., Asgharifar, S., & Gleberzon, B. (2015). What effect does chiropractic treatment have on gastrointestinal (GI) disorders: a narrative review of the literature. The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 59(2), 122–133. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4486990/