IBS Tips and Ideas for Everyday Living
This is a growing list of IBS tips and ideas that will help IBS sufferers cope and deal with normal everyday issues that can sometimes seem debilitating.
We are keen to hear from our fellow IBS sufferers about how you cope every day with IBS. There is a form at the bottom of this page where you can send in your tips so that we can share them with everyone.
The Shopping Buddy Tip
Picture the scene: You are at the checkout in a supermarket. You have a trolley load of goods stacked onto the conveyor.
There are several people in the queue behind you. Suddenly the person in front has a product that won't scan properly and the checkout person has to call for assistance.
You are trapped - no going forward, no going back.For some with IBS, this scenario may be extremely uncomfortable.
If you consider yourself as one who might struggle in this situation, then here's a simple tip that will help take away the pressure:
When you go shopping, go with a friend or relative, and make sure you have enough hard cash to cover the bill. That way you will always have an escape route where the person you are with can take over if necessary.
Just knowing this will help to reduce your stress / anxiety levels, and you will find it easier to stay put and get through the torment of the checkout.
The IBS Emergency Home Bathroom
If you are an IBS sufferer and live in a house with only one bathroom, you might find yourself in a position where your stress levels rise each time the bathroom is engaged.
If you have a large family and the bathroom seems like it is always engaged, your stress levels may be constantly up.
In this article, Rick suggests a very cheap and easy solution to the problem that will end your engaged-bathroom-blues.
The Car Servicing Tip
This is a real simple one, but not everyone thinks of it.
If you dread having your car serviced because you have to arrange alternative transport for yourself to and from the garage, why not switch to a garage that offers a free collection service? They will pick up your car in the morning and drop if back to you when the work is done.
IBS Practical Tips from our Friends and Visitors....
(The newest tips are at the top of this list)
Mark from Canada suggests the following IBS tips:
- Diet-eater smaller, more frequent meals. Chew your food slowly.
- Stop worrying about what other people think. You do not need their approval.
- There are safe drugs like Levsin, which in higher doses are used as anti-depressants but in very small doses are used to treat IBS. It relaxes the spasms.
- There are people who specialize in Hypnosis for IBS sufferers. The Mayo Clinic has completed studies to validate the effectiveness of hypnosis for IBS.
Rachel from the United Kingdom suggests the following IBS tips:
Over the past months, I've recognised and recored patterns in my symptoms and came across certain methods to help ease the abdominal cramp and other symptoms.
- Do not over eat - stop eating before you get the chance to feel full. Also avoid sweet/sugary foods in the morning, as that seems to increase bowel movements.
- Try having something light on your stomach, such as a yogurt. I always carry Imodium with me, this instantly makes me feel more comfortable to know I have them.
- I also discovered the HAYES diet, which is impossible to follow, but it led me to avoid combining vegetables & potato in one meal, this reduces bloating, wind, and excessive stomach rumbling.
Mark from the United Kingdom suggests the following IBS tips:
- Controlled breathing (probably from meditation) make my bowels uncramp, but since I started drinking cranberry juice I have few problems unless I get very stressed.
Savanna from the United States suggests the following IBS tips:
- I've had IBS since I was 15 and it's definitely a struggle. When I have "episodes" I meditate. Breathing helps me so much. I lay down in a quiet dark room. Put my hands on my tummy and breathe very slowly. I imagine a light coming down into my stomach and easing the pain. Sounds crazybut it really does help. :)
- Also peppermint gum is great for the nausea and I always carry immodium with me everywhere I go. I also avoid the foods that bring on the "episodes". Sometimes it doesn't matter but it does make them less frequent. Hope this helps!
Erika from the United States suggests the following IBS tips:
- As soon as I feel it coming on I take some melatonin (herb available at any drug store or supermarket) and lay down. The relaxing effect of it calms the spasms most of the time.
- Sometimes when I sit cross legged or sit on the couch like i would normally sit positioned on the toilet that helps for some reason. I mostly get constipated with my IBS. I don't drink or eat anything as soon as it starts because even water will make it worse.
- As gross as it is, I usually make myself puke once it starts to make me feel extremely nauseous because this seems to empty my stomach and stop the pain from progressing.
Andrew from the United Kingdom suggests the following IBS tips:
- Peppermint Oil is a god send for pain ease. Colpermin is a very expensive way of obtaining Peppermint oil, to ease the pain £5.28 for 16 tablets. Go Online and pay £8.99 for 360 tablets Non-Branded.
Connie from Canada suggests the following IBS tips:
- Stick to the BART diet for a couple days before going on a trip, out for dinner at a restaurant, or when symptoms get severe. B(Bananas) + A(Apple Sauce) + R(White Rice) + T(Toast)= Stabilizes and relaxes the Colon and small intestine. Also DON'T drink water, sip on Gatorade throughout the day. (To replace electrolytes)
- Another tip, keep a journal of severe occurances of IBS and compare it with your diet, stress level, etc. I noticed my IBS flared up when I allowed myself to become overly stressed and fatigued.
- And another tip, have an IBS Buddy. Yes, you heard me right. Get involved withorganizations that have kits for cars while travelling (Brownie points forbeing prepared), become a phone volunteer for an IBS group and help others (Just hearing other people talk about their problem will help you both discoverways to live with IBS.)
Natasha from the US suggests the following IBS tips:
- I have suffered with ibs for about 8 years, and the only thing that seems to give me relief is a yogurt. "A yogurt a day keeps the pain away" also eating your smaller meals works. Peppermint tea and some jazz music works for me , and it helps with stress. Find something that makes you happy and make sure you do it often.
Saagar from Ireland suggests the following IBS tips:
- I tried Andrews antacid powder! One spoonful in waterfeels weird but the pain goes away! I also was given Colpermin tablets pure peppermint oil, available at pharmacys. It goes straight to your bowel to stop the pain! Hopefully this helps!.
Mariah from The US suggests the following IBS tips:
- If you live in the US or Canada, try Queasy Pops to ease nausea. They're all natural and use ingredients like ginger, peppermint and lavender oils. Plus, they use natural ingredients like beet to color them. Also, other naturally flavored hard candies and lollipops help as well (I prefer ginger flavor for both Queasy Pops and regular candies).
Lori from The US suggests the following IBS tips:
- I know this is scary to think about, but wearing an adult protective undergarment while you fly on a plane or take a car trip lets you relax. You probably won't need it, but even if you make a dash to a bathroom and don't quite make it, you can clean up without having your clothing ruined or your dignity and privacy invaded.
Susie from The UK suggests the following IBS tips:
- I find exercise improves my IBS.
- Slippery elm is a good herbal supplement which helps constipation.
Kirsty from Italy suggests the following IBS tip about
Chris from Canada suggests the following IBS tips:
- I travel a lot so I always carry a strip of immodium tablets with me, either in my purse or in my bag, and as weird as it sounds, knowing they are there makes me just that little bit more comfortable!
- Always carry a roll of toilet paper and wet wipes in the car, Just in case, its handy for those rest rooms that aren't kept cleaned or stocked up.
- Chewing gum or sucking on a candy can also help relax you in a tough situation.
- Anxiety is still my biggest challenge also.I've gone so far as spending the night at a hotel or at someones house before an early morning appointment so the drive was only a few minutes away.
Lori from The United States suggests these IBS tips:
John from The United Kingdom suggests:
- Keep a bed sheet tucked under the seat of your car. If you have to make an emergency roadside stop, and can't make it
into a building with a bathroom, you can pull the car over to a grassy shoulder of the roadside, open the passenger door and lean against the edge of the doorway, drape the sheet over yourself for privacy, and "go".
- When you start to suffer from a lot of pain jump in the bath and drink lots of water this seems to ease mine.
Gianluca from Italy has these IBS tips:
- When I usually have my "bad days" I try to sleep or to feel relaxed: sleeping normally can make me "forget" that I have a bathroom emergency. Listening to music while trying to sleep is sometimes good or bad: music can incite me, and inciting while im in emergency is not good at all.
Lola from the UK suggests:
- If you know you’re travelling for a while or going out, get yourself ready & take Imodium before you go to stop yourself from going! Just give yourself plenty of time before-hand, as it may take a couple of tablets to work.
Try to relax & calm yourself using breathing techniques.
You'd be surprised, there are loos pretty much everywhere you go, parks, pubs, garages, malls - Don't be embarrassed. When you’ve gotta go, you gotta! Its human nature - Animals do it anywhere, so can we.
Also take with you, Imodium, wet toilet tissues & normal tissues & a small nice smelling spray just in case the loo you use, or not, doesn’t have tissues. that’s what I do :)
I also know where the loos are where I go, it makes me calmer :)
David from United Kingdom has this tip:
- I suffer mainly with constipation dominant IBS but every few
weeks or so I'll have a night where I'm suddenly in excruciating pain and I
have to go to the toilet very quickly. This usually happens when I eat a bit
too much food than usual, which isn't hard for me as I have a very basic and
bland diet. One thing I will say is that when I have this pain and I'm finally
off the toilet and in bed, I find that laying on one particular side is less
uncomfortable than the other, mainly laying on my right side. I don't know if
this is the same for everyone but I know that this takes the edge off of the
pain when I'm laying in bed and trying to sleep it off.
What's your Tip?
We need your help!
If you have a handy idea or tip that you feel will benefit other IBS sufferers, please tell us about it so we can share it with the world!
Please click here to go to our brand new tips submission page
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