World Inflammatory Bowel Disease Day

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world inflammatory bowel disease day

May 19 is World Inflammatory Bowel Disease Day. It is supported by purple pins, purple wristbands and purple fabric ribbons, which come in personalized and non-personalized versions of each awareness product.

What is inflammatory bowel disease? Inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD, is an umbrella term for a few diseases, the two most common of which are Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s Disease. Inflammatory bowel disease is when the digestive tract experiences chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation leads to permanent damage. Over time, even mild to moderate inflammation that occurs on a fairly regular basis can lead to serious long term and permanent injury. This is true for all kinds of inflammation, not just in the digestive tract. Treating chronic inflammation is crucial in preventing long-term issues wherever the inflammation may occur.

Inflammation prevents the digestive tract from functioning properly, which can interfere with how well it functions. If the digestive system doesn’t function normally, it can cause all sorts of issues, from constipation to malnutrition. Inflammatory bowel disease can be life threatening, although it is very rare.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Symptoms

Depending where the inflammation occurs in the digestive tract, symptoms can include diarrhea (which can become very severe). Diarrhea occurs when your intestines are unable to reabsorb water, which is also why it can be so dangerous. If your body cannot absorb the fluid it needs, dehydration will occur. It can cause fainting and kidney function issues, dryness, headaches, and many other problems.

Other Symptoms

Another symptom of inflammatory bowel disease is stomach pain. Stomach pain can manifest in the form of mild cramps, to severe bloating and pain. Sometimes, the pain can be due to a bowel blockage. Most patients with IBD do experience some level of stomach pain from the disease, but not necessarily from an obstruction. Weight loss can occur with inflammatory bowel disease. This can be from chronic diarrhea, or from the intestines inability to break down food and absorb the nutrients properly. Lake of nutrient absorption can cause serious deficiencies in the body, which can lead to issues such as anemia, or other vitamin and mineral deficits.

The body relies on proper nutrition in order to maintain itself, and not getting the required nutrition can cause problems in all organs. There is also a symptom called hematochezia, which basically causes blood to appear in the stool because of bleeding ulcers along the digestive tract. Inflammatory bowel disease may be associated with other health problems not related to the digestive tract. This includes inflammation of the eyes, arthritis, and various skin disorders.

Crohn’s disease can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract, starting at the mouth and ending at the anus. Crohn’s disease is when any part of the gastrointestinal tract experiences inflammation, which can vary in severity and symptoms. The disease can be chronic and progressive. This means that the severity of a person’s condition can increase over time. Symptoms are dependent on what part of the gastrointestinal tract is affected, and vary from person to person. There’s no real standard for what the disease looks like. Instead, patients have to learn what the disease looks like for them to determine their normal. Establishing a baseline is important for recognizing flare-ups, which may need attention and treatment. Crohn’s disease can change over time, with ups and downs and possibly even periods of no symptoms at all (called remission).

Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis can affect any part of the large intestine. UC is also an inflammatory disease, like Crohn’s. With UC, chronic inflammation occurs on the inner lining of the rectum and/or colon. Sometimes this results in ulcers on the surface of the large intestine. Hence, the name ulcerative colitis. Ulcerative colitis is different from Crohn’s in pattern of presentation. Where Crohn’s disease may appear in patches, UC is more continuous.

Another key difference is that Crohn’s occurs on any layer of lining in the affected area, while UC affects the innermost lining of the intestine. People can develop symptoms at any age. However, UC is most commonly diagnosed between the age of 15 and 30. There are around 700,000 people in the U.S. with ulcerative colitis, and 20 percent of those people have a blood relative who also has the disease. Like Crohn’s, UC can also be a progressive disease. Ulcerative colitis symptoms range from mild to severe. Mild symptoms may present as diarrhea of up to 4 days, with or without blood, and mild cramps. Severe symptoms may include diarrhea of over ten days, severe bleeding (sometimes requiring blood transfusions), severe pain, and more.

The Cause of Inflammatory Bowel Disease

The cause of IBD is not known, but studies suggest that there may be a number of factors that can affect whether or not a person will develop IBD. Some studies have tied IBD to an underlying issue with the immune system, while others indicate that there may be genetic or environmental factors. As of right now, it is believed to be a potential mix of these causes. There is no factor that determines that a person definitely will or definitely won’t develop IBD. Treating IBD usually revolves around reducing or eliminating the source of the symptoms, which is inflammation. Doctors may use many types of medications to reduce inflammation. In worst-case scenario’s, when all medications fail, there may be a surgical option to treat the disease.

Quality of Life

IBD can severely impact quality of life for people, but treatment often allows them to lead normal lives. By treating the disease early, the body is saved from harmful inflammation that slowly damages the digestive tract, making both symptoms and management more difficult. So, if you suspect you may have IBD, see your doctor to discuss it. Early diagnosis gives you your best chance at preventing serious issues. And, that is the purpose of raising awareness for World Inflammatory Bowel Disease Day.

Personalized Cause and World Inflammatory Bowel Disease Day

Personalized Cause® is the number one source for low volume, custom awareness ribbons in the United States. We are the only company to offer our customers the ability to engrave a personalized name, date, or message onto beautiful hard enamel awareness ribbon pins. Although custom awareness ribbons are our specialty, we sell all varieties of awareness ribbons, as well as awareness wristbands. Basically, we’re awareness accessory people.

Our mission is to give our customers the ability to become advocates for themselves and others, while raising awareness for the cause that is close to their heart. Everybody knows somebody that’s struggled, or is currently facing a health crisis. It can be hard to find the right words to express your support or desire to help. One custom awareness ribbon can convey that without a single word spoken. Trust me, I know.

So, if you’re interested in purchasing a purple custom awareness ribbon, visit the link below. Both Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative colitis are represented by purple awareness ribbons.

Raise awareness with our “>customizable purple colitis awareness ribbon pins.

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