- Between one and two in 10 people in the UK are thought to have IBS
- Women are twice as likely as men to report having symptoms of IBS
- You can develop IBS at any age, but it’s most common for symptoms to start between the ages of 20 and 30
It’s not fully understood why someone might develop IBS but stress is one of the three main causes. Some people may get a headache or tense shoulders when they’re stressed, for people with IBS that tension goes straight to their gut.
There is a combination of factors that affect both your brain and your gut, and the interaction between the two. This is sometimes known as the brain-gut connection and this connection can go both ways. The intestine can send signals to the brain and the brain can send signals to the gut. Think about the time you’ve had a ‘gut feeling’ or felt “butterflies in your stomach” when nervous or why you feel like your stomach is “tied in knots” after an argument.
When we are nervous or upset, our body releases hormones and chemicals that affect the digestive system and can cause a chemical imbalance resulting in diarrhoea, constipation, loss of appetite, and nausea.
And if you have experienced IBS pain in the past and are anxious about it, constant worrying about what you are eating creates stress that makes your symptoms worse. And the worse you feel, the more you focus on the foods you choose – the only thing you think you can actively control. Meanwhile, your two brains are continuously sending signals to each other that exacerbate the problem.
It is important to consult your doctor first for information, advice and diagnosis as IBS is a medical condition. Although there is no cure for IBS, there are things that can help manage the symptoms including hypnotherapy. A number of clinical studies have shown that hypnotherapy is an effective treatment for IBS.
Hypnotherapy for IBS will help to reduce and manage emotional triggers that may be contributing to symptoms. You will learn relaxation techniques and develop coping strategies to manage any stress and anxiety which will increase your confidence and self-esteem. It will help to change any unhelpful thought patterns and focus on where you want to be in your life.
Book your free Initial Consultation with us to find out more about how hypnotherapy can help with your IBS.