Living With Crohn’s Disease: Recognizing And Managing Flares

Crohn’s disease is a typical type of inflammatory condition that can seriously affect several parts of the gastrointestinal tract. Crohn’s disease along with ulcerative colitis, has affected almost five million Americans which is typically a lifelong chronic condition alternating between periods of relative stability or absent symptoms. The exact goal of treating Crohn’s disease is to establish remission while further maximizing the overall period of remission. However, it is also important to understand that patients suffering from this disease will be experiencing some sort of flare-up at some point or another. If you are a patient suffering from this dreaded disease then it is extremely important for you to recognize its symptoms and know all the ways in which you can manage flares.

Tracking Crohn’s Symptoms Might Help In Early Recognition Of Flares

Remember flares can be easily triggered by a series of factors which include change in diet, infection, stress, new medications, and even changes in the underlying disease itself. In most cases, a trigger can be identified but sometimes, these triggers might even remain unknown.

The symptoms of Crohn’s disease are usually varied in nature. Most of the people have abdominal pain or diarrhea whereas others might be facing nausea, lack of appetite, abdominal distention, etc. Some people might even have fewer specific symptoms such as mouth ulcers, fatigue, joint pain, or even issues in the key.

crohn's diary record

The key to all these is to have a great sense of baseline symptoms, especially at remission. Numerous mobile applications can be of help to patients in order to monitor their condition while prompting them to track stuff like symptoms, medication, or even bowel movements. Overall these records are very much helpful in providing a better picture of your disease and other related issues.

Change In Diet Or Lifestyle Can Help In Managing Crohn’s Disease Flares

Precautionary measures can be of great help in managing flares especially when they occur. Here is a list of some of them.

Reduction In Stress: Stress might not be a direct cause of this disease but it can indeed create an impact on these flares. Most of the patients suffering from Crohn’s disease find out that regular management of stress is of great help. Most of these stress management techniques include yoga, deep breathing, meditation, and cognitive-behavioral therapy.

Avoiding NSAIDs: NSAID’s or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications such as naproxen or ibuprofen can adversely affect the ability of the GI tract to protect or heal itself, which in result might precipitate a flare. In case you are facing some sort of pain try inducing acetaminophen instead of NSAIDs.

Try Simplifying Your Diet: In actuality, there isn’t any specific diet that cures this disease, but identifying some specific type of food might be helpful. Here is a list of some general principles helping patients feel better while experiencing a flare.

  • Try avoiding fried or greasy foods.
  • Try limiting all the foods that are fiber-rich such as whole grains or raw vegetables.
  • Eliminate all dairy products.
  • Only limit your diet to properly cooked vegetables.
  • Minimize alcohol or caffeine. They are usually the reason for continued flares.

Remember, carefully tracking or monitoring your everyday symptoms can help you in recognizing flares before it actually begins. Your lifestyles and dietary modifications can also help in managing these flares especially when they occur.