Most people experience bowel pain at some time in their lives, whether from a physical disagreement with dinner or sometimes more serious diseases.
Irritable bowel syndrome is a relatively common condition in the United States, with 25 million to 48 million people experiencing discomfort that ranges from bloating and gas to severe pain and constipation, according to the International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders
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But there are numerous things that can cause bowel pain, including everything from constipation to menstrual cramps. Although bowel pain may necessitate a visit to your doctor, many people also seek relief from complementary or alternative medicine, referred to as CAM.
Here are five things that may help stop bowel pain naturally:
1. Herbal therapy.
Numerous herbs from Traditional Chinese Medicine are recommended for various bowel symptoms, including nausea, bloating, and gas. The IFFGD said traditional medical practitioners have used them for thousands of years, but there is little evidence-based medicine to back them up. One study showed that peppermint oil decreased abdominal symptoms, although it did increase heartburn, and another study showed treatment with a herbal formula found symptoms also decreased. The more typically recommended herbs are ginger, rhubarb, barley, tangerine peel, cardamom, and licorice, IFFGD said.
This 3,000-year-old procedure has gained relatively recent acceptance in the Western world, and today is even covered by many insurance policies. The University of California San Diego Center for Integrative Medicine reported
that clinical studies have shown support for colic, nausea, and vomiting, but there is also probable support for the treatment of abdominal pain, chronic ulcerative colitis, and other conditions that cause bowel pain.
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These beneficial bacteria, which can be taken in supplements or ingested through food, have been shown to help diarrhea, bloating, and other gastrointestinal symptoms, according to The Mayo Clinic
"The best evidence relates to a particular organism, Bifidobacterium infantis 35624. Studies have shown this strain to be superior to placebo in relieving the main symptoms of the irritable bowel syndrome (abdominal pain/discomfort, distension/bloating and difficult defecation)," according to IFFGD.
4. Regular exercise, yoga, or meditation.
Relieving stress, which is known to make many GI symptoms worse, can be helpful to alleviating bowel pain, The Mayo Clinic said.
5. Constipation relief.
If your bowel pain is caused by constipation, WebMD recommends eating more fiber in your diet, and making sure you stay hydrated.
Before treating yourself with natural remedies, be sure to consult a doctor about your bowel pain.
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