Being a colitis sufferer for almost 10 years now, I have my fair share to say about the symptoms that I experienced. Over the years, I developed my own methods of dealing with them, and I would like to share those with you today.
Top 5 Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis
And what you can do about them
Symptom 1 - Diarrhea
Probably the worst aspect of ulcerative colitis for me was the fact that I had to go to the bathroom so often. The urgency I experienced was such that I needed to know the exact location of the nearest restroom – all the time. Here are some tricks that helped me deal with having to go to the bathroom so much.
Don’t eat too late
If your colitis symptoms make your mornings worse than your evenings, then you are like me. I noticed that if I ate past 9PM, I almost always had a more difficult time the next morning. I eventually started eating my last meal earlier. If I got hungry at night, I’d limit myself to small snacks with less fiber. This really did help me improve my morning trips to the good ol’ toilet.
Symptom 2 – Pain
Pain. Everywhere. Even down there. Yes – this symptom definitely sucks. If your colitis is anything like mine, then you know about the intense cramping that came 30 minutes inside and outside of every bowel movement. You can relate to the feeling of “pooping your guts out” because that’s what the pain felt like. But here’s something you can try:
When you poop, put your feet on a box
Yes. I know. This sounds ridiculous. But it helped reduce the pain. The guys over at http://www.squattypotty.com know what I’m talking about. Basically you put your feet up on a box to recreate the “optimal” pooping position. I don’t know the exact science of it, but I can say from experience that it helped ease the pooping pains.
Symptom 3 – Urgency
Although this was touched on when we talked about diarrhea, it deserves a spot of its own. Diarrhea was the devil that makes you go to the bathroom a billion times a day. Urgency is the other devil that makes you have to go to the bathroom right now or else it will unleash all hell immediately ASAP STAT kabloom tooo late
Yep, that evil guy. We all have our shitty stories, but here’s a trick that might lift your spirits.
Practice yoga, and use it to stop the urgency
If I feel like going to the bathroom, but I have no accessible bathroom around, I need to immediately clear my mind in order to make the feeling go away. Before, I used to start anticipating the feeling, and then fearing the anticipation, which would cause the feeling. It was a vicious circle that could only be broken if I could control my thoughts. Yoga was the best way for me to learn this technique. Through my now very elementary knowledge of breathing exercises, I have managed to develop the skill to get over that nasty feeling of having to go through the bathroom. Look in to it to help your colitis symptoms too!
Symptom 4 – Blood in stool
This is the least painful, yet most hurtful, ulcerative colitis symptom. The actual bleeding doesn’t hurt as much as seeing the blood. Seeing blood there is a signal of the colitis and is always demoralizing. Especially in the beginning period of a flare, seeing even that little, initial blood can really knock you down. There’s really not much in my arsenal of colitis symptom fighting techniques that can effectively reduce blood in the stool. This is where supplements come in.
- Make sure that your diet is steady and that you are taking your medicines regularly (that means at the same time everyday, too.)
- Look in to CC Compound because its got some ingredients that could help reduce blood. It’s what I take, and it helped me.
Anyways, on to the last symptom…
Symptom 5 – That Feeling of Just Being Drained
Let’s face it – this disease can knock you down. Ulcerative colitis can really drop anyone’s spirits. It’s not just physically taxing, but even after you’re temporarily over the pain, you’re still thinking about how the disease is going to affect you next. I started judging a “good” period of time as one in which I didn’t think of going to the bathroom, or any aspect of colitis for that matter. Believe me, there were rarely any “good” times.
Here’s what I did to help that feeling:
Just get active
I noticed that every time I was in one of those post-toilet drained states, doing almost anything else would quickly bring my energy back. For example, if I started cooking, my mind immediately went off of sulk mode and into the food I was preparing. Eventually, the pain would get bored and leave too. For me, the activity had to involve moving around. If I were to, say, pick up a book and read it in an attempt to get my mind off of my pain and drain, I would not be successful. Try and see what works for you, but if you’re having these drained days, maybe some activity will make that symptom go away.
Colitis sucks. When you’re in a flared state, it may seem like you’re going to be there forever. But whenever I’m down in the worst of my symptoms, I always think of a proverb my dad told me
“This too shall pass”
Or similarly, ‘que sera, sera’, which is Spanish for “whatever will be, will be.” As long as you do everything you can do in your power to stop the disease from getting worse, you are doing fine. Beyond that, you cannot control the outcome, so why worry about it?
Also consider CC Compound to help reduce your ulcerative colitis symptoms and get you back to remission.