What Is Lazy Bowel Syndrome

What Is Lazy Bowel Syndrome?

Lazy bowel syndrome (LBS) is a condition where the body does not produce enough stool or produces too much stool. The term “laziness” refers to the fact that it takes longer than usual for your bowels to empty out after defecation.

The word “stool” means any loose material, such as blood, mucus, pus, feces or other matter.

Symptoms of Lazy Bowel Syndrome:

Difficulty emptying the bowels (bowel incontinence). Symptoms may include pain during defecation, urgency to go to the toilet, feeling like you have to go right away and being unable to hold it. You may feel like you are going to pass out from the discomfort. Other symptoms include bloating, abdominal cramps and nausea.

If left untreated, these symptoms can lead to dehydration and even death.

Causes of Lazy Bowel Syndrome:

Some diseases can cause problems with the production of stool. These include diabetes mellitus, cystic fibrosis, Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Other causes include certain medications, infections and illnesses such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and liver failure. Some medical conditions can affect the function of the intestines such as diverticulosis, celiac disease and irritable bowel syndrome.

Treatments for Lazy Bowel Syndrome:

The treatment for lazy bowel syndrome depends on the underlying cause. If a medical condition is causing the problem, then treating that condition should improve the symptoms of lazy bowel syndrome. Treatments may include changes in diet and lifestyle, certain medications or surgery.

Bloating and Lazy Bowel Syndrome:

Bloating is a common symptom of lazy bowel syndrome. The medical term for bloating is abdominal distension. It occurs when the intestines are filled with excess air, fluid or gas. The main cause is the food you eat, although there are other factors that can contribute to this uncomfortable condition.

In some cases, it may also be related to an underlying health problem.

How Does Bloating Happen?

The intestines contain a layer of muscles that help in the process of digestion and eliminate waste. In some people, this layer of muscle does not work properly. It may expand or contract abnormally when it should not, causing the abdomen to appear swollen or bloated.

Bloating may happen for many reasons. The most common is that a person has excess gas in the intestines. This may be due to swallowing too much air, for example when chewing gum or eating candy, or because the body is not breaking down certain foods properly.

Other common causes of bloating include:

Infections in the abdomen (abdominal infections).

Abnormalities or anatomical issues with the gastrointestinal tract.

Ingestion of certain medicines such as those used to treat seizures.

Ingestion of certain foods such as dairy, wheat or food additives.

Ingestion of certain toxins such as lead or carbon dioxide.

Side effects of certain medicines.

Injury or trauma to the abdomen.

Bloating can also be a side effect of certain medical conditions and diseases. Some of these conditions include:

Spleen issues, such as injuries or autoimmune disease (such as Sjogren’s syndrome).

Gastrointestinal infections such as giardia, salmonella or clostridium difficile.

Gastrointestinal obstruction.

Surgical removal of part of the gastrointestinal tract.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Hormonal imbalance (like thyroid problems).

Adhesions, which are scar tissue that form inside the abdomen and bind organs together.

Chronic diarrhea or loose stools.

Bloating is a fairly common condition and it is usually nothing to worry about. It does not usually cause any serious problems unless there is another underlying cause or condition. If you have bloating along with other symptoms, or if you just don’t feel right, you may wish to consult your doctor.

Diagnosing Bloating:

There are a number of ways your doctor can diagnose the cause of your bloating.

Your doctor will want to know about your medical history in detail, including any issues you may have experienced in the past. This will include questions about the diet you eat and whether or not you have lactose intolerance or any food allergies. They may also ask you about any recent life changes that may be causing stress.

Your doctor will then perform a physical examination on your abdomen, during which they will press on your stomach to see if this causes any pain or bloating. They may also want to examine your throat and nose to check for any issues with breathing or swallowing, which can cause you to swallow too much air.

If your doctor believes that the bloating is related to acid reflux or an internal infection, they may order tests such as an ultrasound or CT scan of your abdomen. If they suspect a more serious condition, such as bowel obstruction, tumor or an injury that needs immediate attention, they may order these tests immediately without waiting.

Treating Bloating:

If the bloating is caused by a medical condition, then treating that condition will eliminate the bloating. For example, a gastrointestinal infection can be treated with antibiotics and an abdominal tumor can be surgically removed.

Bloating may also be caused by lifestyle issues such as eating too quickly or eating foods that you are allergic or sensitive to. If this is the case, then you may be able to treat the bloating yourself at home. The following are things you can try:

Avoid drinking sodas, alcohol or carbonated drinks as they may cause you to belch or have a bloated feeling.

Eat several small meals throughout the day as opposed to three large meals.

Eliminate dairy products and see if this helps relieve your symptoms.

Avoid eating processed or junk food as these tend to be harder to digest.

Do not lie down for at least three hours after eating and try to keep yourself in an upright position. If you can, take a walk or do some light exercise as this may help move things along.

You should see your doctor if you are experiencing ongoing bloating or if the above treatments do not seem to be helping.

Sources & references used in this article:

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Nurses’ perceptions of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and sufferers of IBS by S Letson, CP Dancey – Journal of advanced nursing, 1996 – Wiley Online Library

Intestinal lengthening for short bowel syndrome by J Thompson, D Sudan – Advances in surgery, 2008 – advancessurgery.com

Patients’ explanatory models for irritable bowel syndrome: symptoms and treatment more important than explaining aetiology by RE Casiday, APS Hungin, CS Cornford… – Family …, 2009 – academic.oup.com

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