Crohn’s Disease: Tips and Treatments

Dealing with Crohn’s disease and other inflammatory bowel disorders, such as ulcerative colitis, can be physically and emotionally exhausting. Is your condition likely to worsen? Is your medication providing the results you anticipate? In the event of an emergency, is there a nearby bathroom? People who have Crohn’s disease frequently ask themselves these kinds of questions.

With Crohn’s disease, no single medication is effective for everyone. Treatment aims to reduce the inflammation in your intestines, avoid flare-ups of your symptoms, and keep you in remission. Nobody knows what causes Crohn’s, but specific lifestyle changes you can make to help manage your symptoms. You may regain control of your life by following the treatments listed below.

man with crohn's disease experiencing stomach ache
Freepik / Freepik

What is Crohn’s Disease?

Inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract is a hallmark of Crohn’s disease. In most cases, Crohn’s disease affects the small intestine and colon. A set of disorders called inflammatory bowel disease includes Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis.

If you have Crohn’s, treatment can help relieve your symptoms and allow you to lead an everyday, healthy life.

Treatments for Crohn’s Disease

1. Lifestyle Changes

When you have been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease, you may want to adopt certain lifestyle modifications to help you cope. Changing your diet, exercising regularly, and giving up smoking are all part of this process.

There is a strong correlation between stress and the occurrence of flare-ups and the severity of the symptoms they cause. That’s why taking care of your mental health is just as vital as treating your physical health. It would be best to give it the attention it deserves no matter what you choose to improve your mental well-being.

If you’re not receiving enough vitamins in your diet, you may want to look into vitamin supplements. Furthermore, drinking wine, liquor, beer, coffee, and tea is another typical habit that should be restricted or abolished. To avoid this, drink water or herbal tea without caffeine instead.

2. Medication

Patients with the disease have a wide range of treatment choices. Anti-inflammatory medications are a standard treatment. Also, this may be done through the use of corticosteroids or oral 5-aminosalicylates.

Immune system suppressors can be used in combination with anti-inflammatory medications. Anti-inflammatory medications directly target the immune system’s production of a chemical that promotes inflammation. Azathioprine, mercaptopurine, and methotrexate are among the drugs that may be used to treat this disease.

Antibiotics may be prescribed to minimize the amount of discharge from fistulas and abscesses. Crohn’s disease involves a wide range of symptoms, which necessitates the use of additional drugs. A patient may take fiber supplements, pain medications, or vitamins to manage all of their symptoms.

3. Natural Remedies

Alternative medicine, complementary medicine, and integrative medicine are all forms of natural treatment. In contrast to alternative medicine, complementary and integrative medicine uses a combination of conventional and non-mainstream treatments.

Crohn’s patients may incorporate some natural remedies into their treatment regimens, such as:

  • Herbal and botanical treatments
  • Biofeedback
  • Fish oil
  • Acupuncture
  • Probiotics
  • Prebiotics

Make sure to see your doctor first before using any natural remedy.

Rawpixel / Freepik

4. Dietary Changes

Crohn’s disease symptoms might be worsened or triggered by specific meals and beverages. In the long run, it may be beneficial to make dietary changes to help treat this condition. Also, individuals with Crohn’s disease should avoid foods heavy in fat and fiber and raw vegetables.

Crohn’s disease does not appear to be caused by food, but soft, bland foods may produce fewer symptoms than spicy or fiber-rich foods when the condition is active. Furthermore, most Crohn’s disease patients’ doctors attempt to be as flexible as possible for their meals.

Some foods are safe for persons with Crohn’s disease to eat while others are not. Among them are:

  • Dairy substitutes
  • Rice and rice pasta
  • Potatoes
  • Bananas
  • Fish
  • Tofu
  • Eggs
  • Peeled cucumbers
  • Bell peppers

In contrast, here are the foods to avoid or limit:

  • Soda
  • Butter
  • Cream
  • Barley
  • Broccoli
  • Apples with skins
  • Sausages
  • Red and dark meat
  • Whole wheat bread and pasta
  • Rye products

5. Surgery

A large number of patients with Crohn’s disease will eventually need surgery. In some cases, surgery is required to save a patient’s life or improve their quality of life. A surgeon will try to keep as much of the patient’s bowel as feasible in any surgery they can conduct.

Because of the location and severity of the disease, the type of surgery that individual receives will vary. Surgery is performed to treat intestinal obstruction or blockage caused by thickened or scarred walls of the digestive organs.

Some patients may develop a hole in the intestinal wall known as perforation. An infection known as peritonitis may develop if the intestine’s contents flow into the abdomen. Additionally, people who have Crohn’s disease are at a higher risk of acquiring colorectal cancer than the general population. Elective surgery to remove the colon and rectum may be indicated to avoid this risk.

Surgical intervention may also be a possibility for people who have experienced the following:

  • Excessive bleeding in the intestine
  • Fistulas
  • Abscess
  • Toxic megacolon
Jcomp / Freepik

¹ Crohn’s Disease