After visiting every possible IBS related possible, it was a random conversation with a nurse that began my journey to managing IBS. Up to that one moment, IBS had owned me since birth. As I had grown older and the symptoms worse, I had expanded my search for a suitable treatment. I had always remained positive and tried my best, however lots of things were going very wrong and it needed to get fixed.
I had a very nice Doctor, who tried very hard to help. Coming from a 'get over it' type of a family I was an infrequent visitor to the Doctor throughout my life Thus he always took me very seriously when I finally appeared. He sent me to many specialists, none of who really helped, nor offered any palpable suggestions. Their take was generally that I just had IBS, a condition without a cure.
After frustrating times with the specialists the net was cast wider as I grew increasingly desperate to find help. In my mind traditional medicine had failed me, it was time to try something new. While I met with many lovely people during this phase, all of whom were deeply confident of their ability, my conditioned continued to worsen, to a point it became quite scary. Blood started to appear more frequently, and now even liquids raced through my body faster than the roadrunner.
At my very lowest point, when even leaving the house became a tortuous affair, I had that random chance conversation with my hero nurse. So how did she help me when so many others who specialised fail? We will return to this shortly.
Treatments. Treatments, treatments....
Many IBS sufferers try a never ending list of treatments for their IBS. In doing so they may well come across many different people from a plethora of professions. This can involve a great deal of time, money and disappointment.
We very rarely offer guidance on specific treatments for IBS, as the symptoms can be so different. While there are IBS triggers which are attributable for many, and treatments which work for many, the reality is that for most chronic cases you will require the in depth treatment of a specialist.
Where to look
Something we repeatedly talk about is the importance of your own belief system. The significant variance in results of placebo tests show that mind is mightily powerful tool. For example patients who received a higher dosage of a placebo medicine, recovered more swiftly than those on a lower dose.
We always bring this up, as when looking to find the right IBS treatment for you, there is little point in being forced into treatments you do not believe in. While we will always urge anyone to keep an open mind, fundamentally there is a cold reality to our belief system. If we do no believe in a treatment we often will it to fail. So make sure that you choose a treatment that makes sense to you.
This also makes looking for the opinions of fellow sufferers different. Something you see quite often is a sufferer who has been successfully treated swearing that, the treatment they had works for IBS. This may be true, however from bitter personal experience this is not often the case. I once Google'd for 'IBS cure' and came up with a site which sounded the answer to my prayers. It lead to an ebook, which gave the writers tips on how to 'cure' IBS.
To say that this ebook ten times worse would be significantly underplaying the severity of the repercussions. This one one of many such experiences, before I finally quit searching for 'IBS Cures'. I must add, that you may get lucky by searching for a cure, however it it were that simple IBS would no longer exist.
To the hero nurse
With all that in mind, we return to the nurse who changed my life. The reason that I draw upon this example is that in a world full of so many grey areas and so few facts, the simple thing that my hero nurse did, changed everything. She listened.
“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.”
Stephen R. Covey The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change
I love Stephen Covey's quote, so few people truly listen. This is not a criticism, as many do not listen through their mean spirit, they do it as they want to fix our problems, thus the mind races rather than listens.
By simply truly listening my hero nurse picked out some key elements which lead me to make the most wonderful, dramatic improvements. I had told all the other specialists, Doctors and therapists the same things, however only the nurse heard exactly what I was saying. No one before or since had such an impact, and I have gone on to take control of my life. The thought of not having that conversation makes me shudder, it was the catalyst.
Many IBS sufferers encounters lots of people and opinions. There is no hard and fast rule to say that any one treatment is better than another, you are unique. However if you find that you need to help, our simple guide is as follows, find a treatment that makes sense to you and that you believe in. Then find someone who truly listens to you and you will have a great chance of taking control of your life.
Please note: All blogs and IBS Health articles have been written by IBS sufferers for fellow IBS sufferers.
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