This week is IBD Awareness Week. I haven’t done much or even been on this blog for a long time. But, I wanted to write something up for this week and there is something that has been on my mind.
Part of living with IBD is that you can’t always do what you want to in life. Sometimes the pain and the constant bathroom trips stop you from doing things. Well, for me that is going to change.
Lately I have been hearing the song I Lived by OneRepublic a lot. Part of the chorus has really stuck in my head. It is “I, I did it all. I, I did it all.
I owned every second that this world could give. I saw so many places, the things that I did. With every broken bone, I swear I lived.”
I thought back on my life so far. I have done a lot and have traveled to many places, but I really haven’t lived life or owned every second. This actually bothered me when I thought about it. I thought why can’t I? Just because I have a disease doesn’t mean I shouldn’t live life. So, going forward I refuse to let this disease stop me from doing anything. It might slow me down some times but it won’t stop me.
I posted on my Facebook account a list of things I want to accomplish within the next year. I want to share that list again here.
- Finish school with a B average (I can’t get an A anymore but I can work on the B)
- Find a job that I enjoy doing (We should all enjoy the work we do)
- Pass 2 IT certificates (This goes hand in hand with 1 & 2)
- Get in shape
- Lose weight
- Make a new friend (We can never have too many friends)
- Travel somewhere I have never been before
- Read at least 5 books (Knowledge is power)
- Learn to ski (I have wanted to do this for over 20 years. Anyone want to teach me?)
- Bring IBD awareness to more people
To start of my list, here is some information from The Intense Intestines home page.
It’s estimated that around 1.4 million people are affected by an IBD condition in the United States alone.
In the U.S. about 100-200 people per 100,000 are affected with ulcerative colitis.
And 30-100 people per 100,000 are affected by Crohn’s disease.
Crohn’s can affect all areas of the digestive tract. The digestive tracts covers the following areas
Mouth, Esophagus, Stomach, Small Intestine, Large Intestines, Rectum and Anus.
Ulcerative colitis just affects the following areas:
Colon, Rectum, and Anus.
What Causes Inflammatory Bowel Disease:
Unfortunately, no one knows exactly what causes IBD. All we know is that something in your body causes your immune system to overreact. Different stimuli may be the cause of IBD in different people. For instance it might be a kind of bacteria, something in your own intestines or even your family history.
In fact scientists now believe it is a combination of all these factors. if youhave IBD, you may have inherited a unique gene in your immune system. Then something happened to trigger that gene, causing the overreaction, which then cause the inflammation in a patients intestines.
Who Gets IBD:
IBD can be found in both men and women. it may run in families, in fact 20% of people diagnosed with the disease have a blood relative with some form of IBD.
It is usually diagnosed between the ages of 20-30, all though people of all ages can suffer from an IBD. People of Jewish heritage have a greater rush of developing the disease while people of African American heritage have the least amount of risk.
Abdominal pain and diarrhea are the most common symptoms of IBD. Other symptoms include rectal bleeding, weight loss, arthritis, skin problems, inflammation of the eyes and fever. The range of severity of symptoms can vary. A diagnosis of IBD may involve blood tests, stool tests, upper GI, colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy, or biopsy.