Treatment For Ulcerative Colitis
Ulcerative colitis is a condition that occurs in the digestive tract of an individual. It is considered to be a type of inflammatory bowel disease since it results in inflammation and sores in the lining of the large intestine and rectum. The sores and ulcers which develop cause destruction of the healthy cells in the colon and rectum lining. Ulcerative colitis treatment is dependent on the nature and severity of the symptoms. The exact cause of this condition is unknown and different studies put forth various theories.
Many experts believe that ulcerative colitis is caused by a type of bacteria or virus which infects the digestive tract. The immune system then responds in an abnormal manner and inflammation of the colon lining occurs. Some also believe that ulcerative colitis is an autoimmune disorder wherein the healthy cells are attacked by the immune system. Other studies have found a genetic link to the condition.
Stomach cramps and blood tinged diarrhea are the major symptoms of ulcerative colitis. The individual may also experience nausea, loss of weight, tiredness, appetite loss and difficulty in bowel movements. Children affected with this condition may undergo impairments in growth. In left untreated, the inflammation can spread to other areas of the body as well. Diagnosis of ulcerative colitis is done through an examination of the individual’s medical history. A physical exam and laboratory tests are also conducted. Treatment for ulcerative colitis can be done in different ways. In milder cases where the symptoms are not too severe, medications such as aminosalicylates are administered in the form of oral medication, enemas or suppositories. Usually medication for pain relief, diarrhea and other symptoms are also given. In case aminosalicylates do not help to improve the symptoms, steroids may be administered. Ulcerative colitis medications may also include immunosuppressant drugs which help to restrict the inflammatory response of the immune system. In case there is severe bleeding and also risk of colon cancer, surgery may become necessary. It is advisable to follow the ulcerative colitis treatment guidelines laid down by the doctor.
Apart from ulcerative colitis drug treatment, there are certain natural remedies as well which help to bring about an improvement in symptoms. One of the most popular remedies for ulcerative colitis is intake of probiotics. These are good bacteria which are normally present in the gut. They are available in the form of pills, powders and liquids. Probiotics help to keep harmful bacteria in check and hence protect the colon and rectum lining. Fish oil contains essential omega 3 fatty acids which have a positive effect on inflammation and hence is beneficial in treatment of ulcerative colitis. One can also consume aloe vera gel for relief from inflammation and discomfort. The gel has natural anti-inflammatory properties and hence provides relief. Proper diet is also essential for improvement of symptoms. It is important to avoid foods which worsen the symptoms such as high fiber foods, caffeine, alcohol and carbonated beverages. Some people may also experience an aggravation of symptoms after consuming dairy products.