Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), including Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis, are known to be affected by mental state. Patients with these conditions may experience a worsening of physical symptoms, leading to a flare-up of the disease. Common symptoms include an increase in stools, bleeding tendencies, decreased hemoglobin levels, fatigue, and exhaustion.
In Israel, approximately 65,000 patients suffer from inflammatory bowel diseases, with numbers continuing to rise. While the specific causes of these conditions are not fully understood, they are believed to be influenced by genetic factors, environmental factors, and immune system issues. A recent study published in 2023 examined the relationship between mental health disorders such as anxiety, depression and post-traumatic disorder and IBD symptoms. The study found that there is a mutual influence between IBDs and mental disorders which can negatively impact the course of the disease.
The brain and digestive system have a complex interplay that can significantly affect our overall health. Research has shown that the digestive system has more nerve cells than the spine and stress can have a significant impact on this axis connecting the two systems. In order to effectively deal with prolonged stress that affects chronic diseases such as IBDs, it is important to prioritize self-care first and foremost when it comes to drug treatment and medical follow-up. This includes eating regularly, getting enough sleep and engaging in physical activity such as walking or jogging to release energy. Additionally practicing correct breathing techniques can help stop this situation by releasing tension in the body through calming the sympathetic nervous system.
If mental distress persists for an extended period of time with symptoms that negatively impact quality of life it is crucial to seek support from community mental health providers or through health funds for advice and guidance on managing these symptoms while maintaining control over one’s mental state is also critical in order to maintain control over their disease condition too . For more information about resources available for Crohn’s disease patients you can contact association at 03-7441391 or visit their website at www.ccfi.co.il