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Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common but poorly understood chronic (long-term) condition where the normal functions of the bowel are disrupted. Symptoms of IBS include abdominal pain or discomfort, changes in bowel habits and bloated feelings. It affects up to one fifth of the population.
No definite cause has been found, but it is known that the symptoms can be triggered by stress, problems with the immune system or enteric muscular problems.
Although not serious medically, IBS does have a profound effect of sufferer's lives. It can be controlled by diet, regular exercise, probiotics, avoiding stress and medications such as antispasmodic medicines, laxatives or anti-motility medicines, and antidepressants. Complementary and alternative treatments may also offer relief.
Source; Adapted from NHS
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