Crohn’s Disease

My first hand knowledge of Crohn’s began at the tender age of 5 but I wasn’t actually diagnosed for another 14 years.  This is the earliest memory I have of the disease and it was so traumatic I have never forgotten that day.  Since then I have researched the condition and tried many therapies.  Back then there was no internet and so my mom and I scoured the libraries and bookshops to try and find out about my newly diagnosed ailment.  We eventually found one paragraph in a medical book and that was it!!!  With modern technology available to nearly everyone, there is a lot more information readily available these days.  I am a great believer though in one size does not fit all and so how I experience Crohn’s and how you feel may not be the same.  Unfortunately I also had IBS – yup a real double whammy.

The history of Crohn’s itself is a little hazy.  Although the disorder is named after a New York physician called Burrill Crohn who, with two of his colleagues, reported a number of cases back in 1932, it’s earliest published description was actually 19 years earlier and credited to Dalziel, a Scotsman.  Digging a little deeper, medical historians suggest Crohn’s disease may first have been described as early as 1682 to 1771 or perhaps even earlier.  The medical experts agree though that Crohn’s may be considered a newly recognised disease, with a defined clinical and pathologic description dating back only to the 1960’s when it became clear then this disease could affect any part of the digestive tract.  Little wonder then that I could find hardly any literature back in 1977.

Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis continue to be confused clinically, and the term inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) was coined to include both diseases.

So what exactly is Crohn’s Disease? Here’s a video showing the medical explanation:

 

As well as the abdominal pain and diarrhoea, tiredness and lethargy associated with Crohn’s and IBS, I also experienced painful joint inflammation in my knees, ankles, wrists and fingers together with painful swellings on my arms.  I was in so much pain that I couldn’t walk or even hold a cup in my hands.  This led to my eventual hospitalisation and diagnosis.  I was immediately put on steroid injections.

Through trial and error I have discovered the foods that trigger my symptoms, how to control my stress levels and how to become the master of the disease and not the servant and I’m not alone in this:

“I think we should not rely just on medications,” states Julia Balaz, – coach of the East London support group for Crohn’s and Colitis UK – “we are supposed to be natural beings, without chemical substances in our body.” Based on her experience, she strongly believes that stress and diet are two crucial factors that could cause Crohn’s disease and other Inflammatory Bowel Diseases. This is the reason why she changed her whole life, avoiding stress, doing meditation, focusing on sports and going on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet: “All this has helped me a lot, and now it is a year that I am without the medications.”

There is no evidence that stress, worry or upsetting life changes bring about Crohn’s whereas they are linked to IBS.  Dealing with the symptoms of Crohn’s can obviously trigger anxiety and emotional upset and despondency.

Sunique offers Gut Orientated therapy that’s designed to help and has certainly helped myself.

Sunique is not a medical practitioner and advises that you work closely with your physician in diagnosing and treating your condition.  The treatments Sunique offers are designed to complement your allopathic treatment.