Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Research Digestive Disorders

Alternative therapies Some people with irritable bowel syndrome have found help through alternative therapies: Herbs, including chamomile, ginger, and mint, have been found to be helpful in alleviating gastrointestinal pain. One particular Chinese remedy, Changjitai, reduced diarrhea symptoms in a small clinical trial with 45 patients. Some herbs can interact negatively with prescribed or over-the-counter medications, however. It’s important to consult your doctor before taking any herbal remedies so he or she can warn you of possible risks. Pro-flora dietary supplements such as acidophilus and lactobacillus, taken two to three times per day, may rebalance normal bowel bacteria and reduce gas and bloating. Regular exercise, such as walking, can reduce stress and encourage bowel movements. Therapeutic massage also may help in reducing the effects of stress. Hypnotism is another alternative therapy gaining attention for the treatment of IBS. Hypnotism may help IBS patients manage stress and anxiety and enhance coping skills. Several randomized controlled trials have shown that hypnosis brings about improvement in bowel function, reduces pain and abdominal distention, and increases well-being. While this type of therapy is more expensive than traditional medications, relief may be longer lasting. No well-designed studies have evaluated the effect of chiropractic treatments on individuals with IBS, but it is thought that spinal manipulation may improve symptoms in some people. In these cases, spinal manipulation may have a positive effect on the nerves connected to the intestinal tract. Some patients report symptom improvement from meditation and biofeedback therapies.

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Pediatric Irritable Bowel Syndrome Treatment & Management

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