Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is one of the most common gastrointestinal disorders and is believed to be a disease with no typical manifestations, but doctors can list the most commonly reported symptoms. Doctors have found that females are more likely to suffer from IBS than men, especially young females in their 20s and 30s. It is assumed that the higher frequency of females’ affection is related to their sex hormones (estrogen and progesterone). Many theories were made explaining the widespread incidence of irritable bowel syndrome among women, but none of them was accepted by scientific communities. IBS is found to be more common in second world countries such as South America.
Regarding the severity of symptoms, it is believed that the peak of sex hormones level during the menstrual cycle is associated with worsening symptoms of IBS. Although the regular fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone levels are reported to coincide with most of IBS symptoms, there is no research showing the relationship between female sex hormones and the gut. Pregnant and lactating women also complain from severe symptoms leading to impaired health status. Pregnancy could probably relapse (reoccur) IBS symptoms for cured women. If you suffer from altered bowel habits, review the following prevalent IBS symptoms.
It is a condition of defecating (excreting) loose and watery stool. It is the most critical symptom of IBS, and it’s more likely to happen in females than males as IBS-D (irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea) is more reported by women. Diarrhea is characterised by an increased bowel movement, which is caused by bacterial infection or presence of irritants in the gut. Female IBS patients often complain from diarrhea during their menstruation (period), it is believed that is due to the released prostaglandins which cause successive contractions in the intestines.
In case of dysentery (presence of mucus and blood in the stool), you should see a doctor immediately because diarrhea might have been misdiagnosed with a symptom of irritable bowel symptom which may cause serious complications. Women with IBS may probably complain from tenesmus, which is the frequent sensation of cramping rectum and the urge to defecate. Diarrhea is usually accompanied by indigestion and poor absorption of minerals and nutrients, so make sure to get a check-up especially on your period.