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Living with Someone Who Has Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Living with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is difficult for the person who suffers from it. But life can also be difficult for family members and friends who live with and care for the IBD patient.

Remember, chronic illness affects not only the patient with the illness, but it also affects caregivers such as family members and friends. Aside from the bathroom always being occupied (just kidding) the caregiver may experience disruptions to his or her daily routine.

Having to ask for help from friends and love ones is hard for many IBD patients. Patients may not want to inconvenience others, but it is often necessary. Both patients and caregivers should try to remember what the other person is going through. Patients should remember to thank those that help them, and caregivers should try to be understanding of the IBD patient’s needs.

A friend or family member may be asked to drive the patient to a doctor’s appointment or a lab test. Caregivers may also need to take time off work to care for a patient who is having a severe flare up. An important thing for caregivers to remember is not to overextend themselves. There will be times when caregivers should just say no to the IBD patient and ask the patient to seek help from another source. This is difficult for both the patient AND the caregiver. However, if the caregiver overextends himself/herself to the point of becoming ill, he or she will be no good to anyone.

Helping Someone with IBD

If you have a friend or family member who suffers from IBD, here are some tips to help you manage:

  • Be available and listen.
  • Look for organizations that offer support for caregivers.
  • Accept that the chronic illness may not go away.
  • Focus on positive aspects of living, such as participating in fun activities, rather than just the patient’s physical health.
  • Remember to smile.
  • Be positive.
  • Take care of yourself.

If Someone is Helping You Cope With IBD

If you suffer from IBD and seek help and support from friends and family members, make note of the following tips:

  • Say thank you often.
  • Seek help from a variety of people.
  • Do not be afraid to ask for help.
  • Try to be positive.
  • Stay connected with friends and family members.
  • Pursue hobbies and fun activities with people in your support network.
  • Try to smile.

For medical attention in Florida for IBD, make an appointment with us today.