Post # 1
Hi bees! Warning: long and very TMI!!! I’ve posted before here about my IBS and endo issues. It’s been a long time since I’ve worked f/t due to my health. I’ve been working p/t but we need to be bringing in more $ so I recently started looking for a new job. I’ve gotten my health issues somewhat under control over the last six months ~ I take Celebrex for the endo, Levsin (an anti-spasmodic) and Imodium for IBS, and an anti-anxiety medication because my IBS was so bad I was afraid to be too far from home (when I get an attack I can be in the bathroom for hours). The anxiety alone could bring on an attack. This leads to my question and way Too Much Information ~~ I just got hired for a new full-time job and I start in 2 weeks. I am really afraid of my IBS acting up when I change my routine & as luck would have it I’m also due to get my period the week I start the job (even with Celebrex, I am nervous b/c it makes me sleepy and my IBS usually flares that time of month).
My eating routine at home to deal with my IBS is this: I eat 2 slices of french bread for breakfast around 11 a.m., along with one cup of weak coffee. Coffee is not good for IBS but for some reason the combination of the weak coffee + french bread will make me “go” within about an hour and then my stomach feels pretty decent the rest of the day, as long as I stick to ‘the rules’ of what I can eat and only eat small amounts at certain times. I have alternating C & D IBS but sticking to this routine has helped keep flare ups to a minimum.
My fear is how my stomach is going to react when I start working f/t and have to follow a new schedule w/ strict break times. I really REALLY do not want to have to use the restroom at work to have a bm. The thought seriously terrifies me. I have to be relaxed, not pressured for time, or worrying about other people hearing me. I don’t know what to do to change my body’s internal routine so that I can have a bm either before work or at night when I get home. If I try to eat/drink coffee at 6 a.m. I think that’s going to give me an attack b/c my stomach just doesn’t do well that early, but if I wait until after I get home from work to drink coffee then I’d be up all night from the caffeine.
I’ve kind of freaked myself out (obviously, lol) trying to come up with a plan, going so far as to consider daily enemas to force myself to go when I’m at home. I know anxiety plays a big part in my IBS. I wish I could just be NORMAL and not worry about this! I know I sound crazy but IBS has had a negative impact on my employment in the past and I don’t want to screw this up because I feel like it’s a blessing & a miracle to have found a good job in this economy. Does anyone else deal with anxiety about this at work? Any suggestions? Thank you! 🙂
Post # 3
I have Crohn’s not IBS but I understand where you’re coming from. I also have severe anxiety due to health issues that has caused me not to be able to work.
Since you have 2weeks before you’re due to start the new job, what if you just adjust your routine now to something similar to what it will be then? It may give your body time to adjust to a new routine and help reduce anxiety over the change. It is no fun to get up early for no reason but in this case, it may help.
Have you considered using hormonal birth control to stop your period altogether? I do this because my Crohn’s gets worse and it has worked wonders.
good luck to you!
Post # 4
So try an elimination diet. I was gluten/dairy/fructose/yeast intolerant and had no idea. blood tests did not tell me anything. Probiotics (the refrigerated kind), enteric coated peppermint oil and digestive enzymes have made a world of difference for me.
Post # 5
@MrsPaulsBabyBallerina: I actually see my gyno tomorrow and was going to ask to get a Mirena IUD. I had one years ago and didn’t have any periods, which was a blessing for my endo! I still had the IBS, but at least it wasn’t affected by the time of month. I think it’s a good idea to try to change my schedule now ~ I actually am up that early already b/c I take my kids to school but I could try eating that early and see what happens. Thank you for your reply!
Post # 6
@HappySky7: Thanks! I actually have done the elimination diet before (I’ve had IBS since my teens, ugh lol) & I’m lactose intolerant. I know what my safe foods are but my IBS can sometimes act up even with those (probably due to stress). I tried Digestive Advantage but that made my symptoms worse. I’ll definitely check into the peppermint oil and probiotics, though!
Post # 7
@cutiepatootie: I like natural factors peppermint oil caps, and DDS for probiotics. Hope you feel better soon 😀
Post # 8
I have IBS too, but I’m the opposite about public restrooms… I adore them. I am a public restroom connoisseur. In any city I’ve visited, I can tell you where the nicest public restrooms are, where the convenient ones are, where you kind of have to buy something to use them vs who doesn’t care, which ones are gross but I will TOTALLY use them anyway if I have to. In the Elementary school where I teach, I could tell you what bathrooms are least used at what times of the day.
Learning to love public restrooms, to me, is one of the biggest things you can do for yourself with IBS. (If you’re anything like me, you will totally be in that bathroom, so it’s good to make friends haha.) As a traveler, I joke that I leave a part of me everywhere I go. ;D
Post # 9
@cutiepatootie: I also have IBS and can feel your pain! I have the D kind of IBS and never any C. I’m usually ok at work with my attacks and they rarely happen here which is probably because I have a routinue going on and have had for 5 years. My IBS is definetly triggered when I dont have a rountine going on like if I go on vacation sometimesor even on a day off from work. Do you have a job where you can have snacks or breaks when you need too? Or are the scheduled for you? I would maybe just let your superior know your issue and maybe they can help you work around you breaks to accomodate. AS for the bathroom issue for me when I have to go I have to go and luckily my work bathroom has a fan and is a single use bathroom with some air freshener (TMI?) I think the best thing to do is to try not to stress your self out about it too much as that might cause more issues for you because of stress.
Post # 10
I’m a nervous poo-er, as in, in a new environment I just won’t go. I physically can’t. When I go on trips, I will usually go over two weeks without going #2. As an added bonus, I have a sensitivity to fat, so I get food poisoning symptoms if I get too much of it (think IBS only with vomitting too, ugh). Travel is hard on me.
And I’ve managed to work for years in an office building without issue!
It probably took me 2 (painful) years before my body would recognize the office as a safe place (I’m so weird I know), which involved a lot of rushes home, sick time, etc.
Now, after 5+ years, I can tell you the easiest thing to do is to go to another floor. No one will know you there but everyone will assume you are supposed to be there. Go to a floor with less people, and you’re very likely to have the bathroom to yourself for the duration of the time you need it.
Post # 11
Thank you for the replies! I am sure I will have strictly scheduled breaks/lunch in my new work environment but I think once I am used to the schedule of eating lightly at certain times that *hopefully* my stomach will adjust. I am definitely going to take the suggestion to look for a private bathroom, hopefully on a different floor. I would LOVE it if it had a fan. I think I need to take a lesson from Bebealways and change the way I look at public bathrooms ~ just tell myself it’s a normal bodily function & ok to go in public! Beachbride, I too have had issues where I just physically can’t go b/c I’m freaked out it’s a public bathroom, until I get a stomach attack and then it doesn’t matter where I am. I’m going to do my best to not stress about it, though, and at least I have meds I can carry (anti spasmodic & anti anxiety) so it gives me a little comfort knowing if the worst happens, I have something to help.