Basic Tummy Trouble or IBS: How to Tell the Difference

Basic Tummy Trouble or IBS: How to Tell the Difference

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a chronic condition that affects anywhere between 25-45 million Americans, even children. But just because you have tummy troubles, that doesn’t mean IBS is to blame.

Our experienced team of gastroenterologists at GastroMed LLC can help identify digestive disorders like IBS at several convenient locations in Miami. The first step in reaching a diagnosis involves recognizing the different symptoms you see in a sensitive stomach compared to a condition like IBS.

What a sensitive stomach looks like

Just about everyone has an upset stomach at some point in their lives. These symptoms often include:

But, when these symptoms occur frequently, you might have a sensitive stomach. In most cases, these issues arise because of food sensitivities to eating spicy or fried food, dairy, or consuming alcohol. You can also have stomach issues because of certain situations.

One of the main differences between having a sensitive stomach and IBS is pain. That’s because irritable bowel syndrome interferes with your colon.

The symptoms of IBS

Your colon is always working to process and remove waste from your body as it passes through your large intestine. To do this, your colon reabsorbs electrolytes and water while turning digested food into stools so it can leave your body.

A common symptom of IBS is abdominal pain because your colon can’t function properly. In some cases, you might also notice moderate pain relief following a bowel movement. IBS also changes the frequency or form of your bowel movements.

Additional symptoms of IBS include:

IBS can also cause fatigue and difficulty sleeping as well as emotional changes like anxiety and depression. When you have IBS, your symptoms can appear unpredictably and impact your quality of life. They can also be more severe for women who are pregnant or menstruating.

Living with digestive disorders

Several bowel-related conditions have similar symptoms. The best way to determine if you have a digestive issue is by working with an experienced professional, especially if you have significant changes in your digestion or bowel habits.

So, to reach an accurate diagnosis, we start by performing a comprehensive physical exam and reviewing your symptoms. We might also recommend a minimally invasive exam, like a colonoscopy, to rule out other conditions.

There isn’t a cure for a sensitive stomach or chronic condition like IBS, but we offer several therapies to help you manage your condition. One of the first steps is learning to identify food triggers that aggravate your symptoms and learning stress management techniques. We can also provide medications to help control problems like diarrhea, bloating and cramps.

To learn more about IBS and basic tummy troubles, call us at GastroMed or schedule an appointment online today.

 

You Might Also Enjoy...

Fatty Liver Disease is Becoming Increasingly Common

Fatty liver disease is a serious condition that can interfere with your liver’s ability to function, and it’s increasingly common in the United States. There are steps you can take, however, to protect your liver from irreversible damage.

Living with IBS

IBS — irritable bowel syndrome — often goes far beyond a localized digestive concern. IBS can hijack your life in many ways, sending you on a quest for better coping mechanisms. We review some here.

Everything You Need to Know About Crohn's Disease

When your Crohn’s disease has you looking for the nearest restroom everywhere you go, it’s time to get to the bottom of things. Read on to discover what Crohn’s is, why you have it, and how you can manage the symptoms.

Diet Tips to Avoid GERD Flare-ups

Are you sorry after you’ve eaten some pizza with extra sauce? Making some changes in what you eat and drink could help alleviate a lot of discomfort from gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

How a Colonoscopy Can Save Your Life

You may be tempted to procrastinate getting a colonoscopy. But don’t. Whatever unpleasantness you perceive about having this diagnostic procedure, know that it is the best tool you have in helping to prevent colorectal cancer. Read on to learn more.

When Does Diarrhea Warrant Medical Intervention?

Everyone can expect to experience diarrhea at times. But is there a time when you should see your doctor about it? Yes. Find out when diarrhea warrants a visit to the doctor or maybe even the emergency room.