I know the cause of my problem

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New Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 11/2/2007 8:05 AM (GMT -6)   
But I don't know how to fix it.
I know my IBS is caused by anxiety. It only tends to flare up on a morning when I am going to do something that requires leaving the house. The problem is I don't feel anxious about going out. I only get anxious about going out when I start having multiple, uncomfortable BMs right after I wake up. How can I have an IBS flare up BEFORE I get the anxiety? This just doesn't make sense to me. I am getting depressed about this because it happens way too much.
Does anyone else have the same problem? How are you dealing with it?

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 11/2/2007 9:30 AM (GMT -6)   
Nearly everyone with IBS has their worst bowel problems in the morning. While this can be linked to anxiety and stress, the most common cause is your body gets woken up from being asleep all night and everything gets cranked up. Most people (IBSers and normal people) have a bowel movement in the morning. This is just becuase your intestines have been slowly processing food all night long, and when you get up, that cues them to evacuate.

There's not much you can do to avoid the morning bathroom rush. A few things that people do to help is to get up earlier, so they can have their problems and get over them and still have time to get to work, and not eating breakfast first thing. I eat my breakfast when I get to work (sometimes an hour or more after I get to work). I started eating it at about 9:15 this morning. I woke up a few minutes before 7. I got up, worked with our horse, came in and took a shower, had my morning poop, got dressed, drove an hour into work, got settled at my desk and only then started in on breakfast. If my guts are acting up a little bit (or I'm not very hungry), I might wait to eat breakfast until 10 or even 11, or skip it all together and go straight into lunch at 12. I find the longer I wait to eat after waking up, the less likely adding food to my GI tract is to upset me. The first meal of the day is always more of a loose cannon for me than the last meal. If I have to, I skip breakfast, then have lunch, dinner, and then some form of post-dinner breakfast. Same three squares a day, just running on a later schedule.

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 124
   Posted 11/2/2007 9:31 AM (GMT -6)   
I don't think you are having IBS flare ups before anxiety. You will have been anxious for some time before the BM and the complex relationship between the brain and what happens lower down can, I understand, be very unpredictable.

I get a bit panicky just before a BM - chiefly because I am apprehensive at what it will look like! - but find that deep slow breathing can help, with the concentration on exhaling and waiting before I inhale. Conscious relaxing of arm and shoulder muscles can help too but I agree the frustration is sometimes monumental! Good luck.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 319
   Posted 11/3/2007 3:29 PM (GMT -6)   

Stress and anxiety do not CAUSE IBS.  If your doctor is telling you that, he is giving you erroneous information.

While the exact CAUSE is not known, it is generally believed that an IBS gut has a heightened sensitivity to the normal function of bowel contractions as well as nervous system complications.  Like you, IBS CAUSES my anxiety, not the other way around.  However, after living with this condition for over 30 years, I suspect that the two are so closely interwoven that I almost can't separate them anymore.  Simply living with a heightened awareness of gut volatility would cause anyone to experience anxiety.

Morning can be stressful for everyone with IBS.  For me, it sets the tone for the day.  If I have a bad morning, either way (C or D), I can predict how I am going to feel physically for the next 12 hours.  Unfortunately, this awareness can become a preoccupation that can limit how one functions in the world.  If I know I am going to be in pain and distress for hours, or I fear I may have violent D, I am not going to feel inclined to participate in regular activities.  That causes stress, especially if those regular activites include work or child care, etc.

New Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 17
   Posted 12/14/2007 11:07 AM (GMT -6)   
Activa is for both and I can tell you it really helped me.

I would go 3 days of no BM and then 3 days of D. It was horrible. My body was not digesting food properly. THe docs said I had IBS/Ibd, and the gave me prescription pills for the pain and cramping I would have every single time I ate. I suffered for almost 2 years. Every meal I ate felt like I was food poisened. could not eat much for food. Everything had to be bland. Like white rice and baked chicken for the last 2 years.

I tryed Activa and the first 3-5 days I did not notice a difference. BM were still loose. I still ate one everyday and now I have been on it for 1 month. I feel like a million bucks!!!! I go the same time everyday now and its normal and there is no pain associated with it. My mood has improved and I am ten times happier then I've ever been. I can finally go out to restaraunt with my boyfriend and eat from the menu without worring. Just only regret I tried this sooner so I would not have to suffer.

And I can eat anything I want now. I might gain alot of weight at this rate. The foods that I would have to avoid before I can now eat with ease....

Like Pizza, ice cream, soda, chocolate, pudding, chips, sandwiches, an occasional beer OMG the list goes on.....
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