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Hi everyone, usually I have D+urgency, but lately with the colder weather I'm experiencing more C and pain. For pain, I don't recall the last time the symptoms were as bad as today! Granted, I guess I abused my body to the max by not leaving my apartment for 4 days straight this week (in my neck of the woods it was very cold and I dreaded going out in -16F with the wind chill! So I stayed inside from Sunday evening to Friday morning. Yes, that's bad I know, but I had no idea how bad it could get until I found out. This week I did not eat sufficient veggies+fruit (hardly any) and tried whole wheat waffles with flax seed, whole wheat bread and brown rice instead of my usual white bread+rice. I recall having only 2 BMs in 4 days. I wasn't eating and sleeping well, getting stressed thinking about work, I even lost appetite lately despite the fact I felt hungry before the pain started. Today was the worst. First my day started with the usual urgency+D, but later on at work, no matter how much peppermint tea I drank (perhaps the bag was worn out?), it had no effect for the waves of pain. I guess having the waffles, WW bread and berries on an empty stomach was stupid too (I know from an IBS cheat sheet, that's a no no, but I wanted some variety from the usual white bread.)Tonight I was trying to leave work (had problems in the morning too), got to the elevator but all of a sudden, had pain + an urge to use the washroom...went back to my office's washroom and (I'll cut out the details), proceeded to suffer with a severe cramp and difficulty with evacuation...so severe I was praying the security guard would come by and check up on me, almost on the verge of calling 9-1-1, but thinking I'm not even sure of the building's address... and for this? I'd have to be on the ground in extreme pain to really call the paramedics, you know? The last time I had a severe episode was late Aug. when I had a panic attack. Otherwise I just have mild/moderate symptoms.Anyway after over 30 mins of suffering all alone in an empty office building (imagine how isolating that must feel), I was praying to be home, but had to tough it out. I finally made it outside and back to my car after 2 BMs...then here at home I felt waves of cramping again! I took a peppermint capsule and it doesn't help - in fact it may have flared up the cramping again. Even though I should be hungry, hardly any appetite at all. I really wonder what triggered all this today? --Stress? The cold? There's a draft flowing onto my hands as I type this from the adjacent window (I should get some plastic sheeting on the windows I guess)--Lack of sleep? yes I guess 5am-11am (had insomnia) or noon really took a toll on my body, trying to fight sunrise and all--The whole wheat /grain diet? - guess I should go back to white bread/rice?--Lack of soluble fiber - hadn't eaten yams, mangoes in a while - usually those work OK for mePerhaps I should just have a bath and trying to eat a bit of something else besides the plate of white pasta with mushrooms, grape tomatoes and hummus I prepared for late dinner? After the bath, I'm thinking of emailing my supervisor who will be in tomorrow (my normal shift) to ask her if she can have someone fill in for me, at least for a 1/2 day. Would you...or would you just take a bath, go to bed hungry and hope for the best Sunday?Oh my, what a lousy day. I hope tomorrow is brighter...
 

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Eat.. sleep and see how you feel in the morning. You could feel good enough for a few hours at work by then. Ya never know. But if you skip eating.. you could guarantee yourself some immediate D right after the next meal you DO eat.By the way, why don't you ask your Dr for an antispamodic to help when you have pain like that?
 

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Shep also....I know what you mean by the cold.. Just shivering alone can bring on a significant pain attack for me too. So I have learned to dress warm enough for the temperature (whether inside or out). Layers are good. But I try to avoid shivering at all costs.
 

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Lack of sleep, and being cold are both physical stressors that can set off IBS. The fiber issue can also set some people off as well, so put those all together...Hope you feel better today.If the pain is upper right quadrant and tends to last for 6 or more hours with out letting up or is in the lower right quandrant and will not let up you may need to get your appendix and gall bladder checked. Both can cause really bad pain. Sometimes it is hard to know with IBS, but when you get something much worse than usual or lasts much longer than usual it may be worth getting checked out.Anxiety and panic also tend to ramp up the pain levels, and when you get severe pain that tends to be set off so that can be a vicious cycle. Anxiety ramps up the pain which ramps up the anxiety which ramps up the pain...
 

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Hi BQ and Kathleen, thanks for your compassionate replies. I agree that lack of sleep, cold, pain and anxiety are all triggers. Been there done that, but someone I continue doing it...I wonder why? Well I'll explain.To update the group, I took a bath last night and that seemed to calm the gut a bit - however the pain still remained. Unfortunately I couldn't fall asleep until early morning again - I guess I'm in a vicious cycle of getting up late, going to bed late - and I really need to make adjustments. Since I associate the morning with most symptoms, especially cramping and D, I thought that if I slept in, it could be reduced. But that assumes you had a good night rest of course.Needless to say, I think I'm going to move out of my current apartment at the end of the lease. I don't want to blame it all on living conditions, but I do know that for a variety of reasons, including thin windows and walls, the street noise, the over-reliance on ear plugs, the spring loaded front doors (which people slam shut) and my neighbours making noise like dragging furniture, loud TVs, etc. despite me asking them to moderate the noise, that there are various stressors that attack my senses. Coupled with the fact I stay indoors way too much in the warm and cozy cocoon, I definitely think that the inactivity and trying to shelter myself from the outside world all played a role. Yesterday's pain wasn't acute for hours, otherwise I'd have likely passed out, however it was sharp for about 30 mins and off and on moderate for several. I get the feeling it was the body reacting to stress at work, lack of sleep, C and a mild cold (felt run down). Mom tells me to make sure I go outside every day, especially my days off, but I often stay inside and don't go for a walk. I look at the weather and see forecasts for deep freeze, windchills and know my building is on a windy corner, therefore dread going out. But I found that more often than not, the anxiety is highest when I'm at home fretting and when leaving. However most of the time I am OK once outside, I may have a D urge and have to return suddenly (it happened twice this weekend), but otherwis I'm generally OK.Anyway, back to the weekend's events, I was delayed for work again today- had set my alarm for 10:30am, but was unable to rise until 12:15! and finally made it out by 14:30, arriving around 15:00. I was 4 hours late and had to email my supervisor+manager about it. I stayed later too though, until 23:00 while my official schedule is 11:00-19:00. I work mostly autonomously, except for some noisy colleagues around me-unfortunately that's been another stressor lately...people talking loudly and whistling...it irritates my ears (have borderline hyperacusis that was aggravated by excessive reliance on earplugs and staying inside all the time in the noisy apartment) I think that by now my bosses have had enough...both the noise concerns and scheduling issues are unresolved - if I could work from home, everything would be better, but I've written about that topic many times before. I did mention in the email that for weekends like this one, I wish I could have remote access...it would boost my productivity, allow me to be more reliable and respect my set timetable, be more efficient, etc. Seems like the ideal solution for my problem, but as I've mentioned before, they denied it and I'm on my own...except that I'm planning to discuss it with upper management very soon (promise, this time!).Anyway, enough rambling...I know I need to try to be more active and eat more regularly, I just often deprive myself and even go for several hours without munching because I guess right now I associate BMs with pain, urgency and anxiety. If I can one day (soon I hope) get an urge I can control and calmly evacuate instead of urgent D or pain after C, then I'd be a happy camper. But I guess that's a common goal here.
 

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Eat.. sleep and see how you feel in the morning. You could feel good enough for a few hours at work by then. Ya never know. But if you skip eating.. you could guarantee yourself some immediate D right after the next meal you DO eat.By the way, why don't you ask your Dr for an antispamodic to help when you have pain like that?
Hi again BQ, can you explain why skipping meals could guarantee immediate D after the next meal? I find that's often the case with me so I guess your theory is right. That's one reason I often skip breakfast and only eat it as brunch around noon once I've gotten up and left for work.About the antispasmodic, unfortunately I'm not currently being followed by a gastro Doc, however I do self medicate with peppermint oil capsules now and then. I read that that's considered a natural antispasmodic. Further advice led me to this site: http://www.aloelife.com/AloeVeraPages/AloeDigestive.html , which describes Aloe Vera Juice as beneficial as a digestive aid. Furthermore, that site and a radio segment I heard suggests that calcium+magnesium supplements are critical for IBS sufferers who lack dairy and other foods in their diet that would normally supply us with these minerals.What do you think of this passage? I know probiotics is a popular supplement here, but how about the others?
Eat nutritious foods with quality proteins and vegetables daily. Especially include dark greens, yellow and orange vegetables. It is suggested that most if not all adults supplement their diet to reach optimum health. (It is especially important if you find you are dairy intolerant to take mineral supplements.)Supplements -a.) Calcium Citrate & Magnesium Citrate (1000 mg./500 mg.)b.) Multiple Vitamin and Mineral supplement that includes B-Complexc.) Probiotics (Milk Free acidophilus)d.) Liver tablets and (and or) herbs that help the liver like Milk Thistle, etc.Digestion Support - Whole Leaf Aloe Vera Juice Concentrate (WLAVJC) or Stomach Plus Formula with Herbs (Especially for Relux.)Make certain your bowels are moving daily. Constipation will make all of your health problems worse.
 

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can you explain why skipping meals could guarantee immediate D after the next meal?
Not my theory.. just what is suggested. IBS guts like to be busy. So eating smaller more frequent meals is best.ANYthing "Citrate" will give you more D. So stay away from that if you have D. (Calcium Carbonate is suggested for those with D.)Multivitamin couldn't hurt.As far as the rest.. there are quite a few probiotics to choose from.. again trial & error comes into play as to which might be best for you. Visit the Probiotic Forum for more info.I am not familiar with "Liver Tablets".I would do a search here about the Aloe Vera Juice... I seem to recall real mixed reviews on that... but do your own search.BTW I don't get my antispasmodic from a Gastro. I get it from my regular Doc.Shep go to the forums on this site that seem to match your symptoms and read up on things you might want to try to manage your symptoms. It will entail loads of trial & error... but that is just the way it is for all of us.As far as your lack of a decent sleeping schedule... I'd make that a real priority so you can keep your job.
 

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Whole leaf aloe has a stimulatory laxative in it, that may not be good for all IBSers.The gel part can be soothing but depends on how much laxative is in the preparation and how sensitive you are to that.Not sure if I've ever known anyone her to get better on milk thistle, but liver treatment seems to be a common thing recommended to everyone all the time no matter what they have.IBSers often have to watch the balance of magnesium and calcium, both are good to get if you avoid dairy, but magnesium in all forms increases diarreha and some IBSers can't handle even very low levels of magnesium in supplements and certainly not at 50% of the calcium dose most cal-mag combo pills have.The vitamin C and magnesium in multivitamins often are higher than some with IBS-D can tolerate and may increase diarrhea.Nutritious foods have to be watched as the ones with sorbitol (like some raw fruits) can make diarrhea worse no matter how nutritious they are. It isn't true that IBS is caused by eating junk food with low amounts of nutrients. However everyone should always eat as healthily as they can but a blanket just eat healthy and not junk food doesn't seem to understand how food and IBS interact. Plenty of life long healthy eaters end up with IBS and usually are quite pissed as they believed they could not get any digestive problems because they were healthy eaters rather than junk food eaters.Being on a regular schedule usually is better than sleeping in trying to catch up. Your body knows what the clock says no matter when you go to bed and get up and basically giving yourself jet lag even without the travel doesn't help much.As for skipping meals. Every single meal you eat activates the colon. This is normal and natural and you cannot shut it off. Some things cause a bigger "move it on" signal than others. Finally eating after skipping meals is one of them. The longer you wait to eat the bigger the "move it" signal is. This is why people on shows like Survivoroften get diarrhea when they finally get a food reward. Larger, heavier, fattier meals make a larger "move it" signal than smaller, lighter, leaner meals. This is true in all humans, even the healthy ones, not just people wtih IBS.
 
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