Why might IBS cause tiredness and fatigue? January 06, 2016 14:30

In addition to pain and bowel changes there are many symptoms associated with IBS that sufferers experience with varying intensity. Many sufferers of IBS report fatigue, there are a number of causes of this tiredness.

It is important to remember that although there is a lot of information available about IBS much of this condition is not fully understood. Until the specific cause of IBS is known and a cure found solutions will be focused on reliving these symptoms.

Dehydration and Nutrient Loss: Anyone suffering from diarrhoea loses vital water and nutrients, to combat this ensure you are replacing those lost fluids and eating foods that will replace any lost nutrients to the body. Those suffering from constipation can also feel a lethargy, again ensure that you are taking in enough fluids.

Stress Related: Also known as Brain Fog. Stress is known to have a direct link to IBS, you may have reached mental exhaustion and are wondering why? When a body experiences stress it is responding to its natural ‘fight or flight’ mechanism where adrenaline releases and has a knock on effect physically on your heart rate, muscle tension and blood flow. Unless this stress cycle is countered your body will continue to ‘fight’ until it is exhausted. Try focusing on stress relief techniques and introducing more gentle exercise to help break the cycle.

Pain Related: If you have been suffering pain because of IBS or any other cause your body will have a similar response to stress where it will begin to ‘fight’. Pain itself can lead to stress or depression which can further magnify this response. Seeking out effective pain relieving solutions and practicing stress relieving techniques should eliminate the cause of this fatigue.

Medication Related: In order to treat Irritable Bowel Syndrome you will probably be advised to take certain medications or supplements to relieve your symptoms. Some of these medications may have fatigue or tiredness as a side effect. It is important that you speak with your family doctor if these side effects become severe or unusual.

Sleep Disruption: During flare ups of symptoms diarrhoea may cause sufferers to make several trips to the bathroom day and night. Constipation may keep a person awake with both pain and discomfort. Where possible try to find extra time to sleep or rest knowing that you are going to be unsettled. Remember that once the bowel related symptoms are back under control this will finish as well.

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*Please remember to always seek medical advice. This article is written generically about IBS and should not supersede any advice received by a medical professional about an individual condition. If you think you have IBS or any other condition get the advice of your Family Doctor especially before beginning or changing any course of medication.