1. Health
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Discuss in my forum

Readers Respond: How Does Your Period Affect Your IBS?

Responses: 109


Updated October 01, 2012


And enough known about the condition for people to be understanding, or empathetic of the dramatic affect it can have on a persons life, as it makes it very difficult to function during an episode. This is the first time I have ever been able to speak about how it really makes me feel and how awful it can be openly. I'm sorry about the lengthy chat, and wish you all the best and luck with finding ways to make life easier to cope with during these episodes. Just don't let it beat you. I always find the symptoms are must worse when I get upset. I really does help though hard sometimes to think positively and say I'm going to beat you :).
—Guest Tracy


diet, and although some things help make the symptoms a little Ore bearable, but nothing I have tried gets rid of them completely. I've also noticed the older I get, the worse the episodes when they do happen have become.. . The one and only positive I take from years of this suffering, is that most times, I am able to control where I am, and whom I'm around when the symptoms are at there worst. It's hard obviously when you work, and sometimes I find it hard being a single mum of a four year old girl it's not something I want my chins to have to see, but unfortunately it's impossible to hide. My first real episode happened when I worked In travel and was looking around five star abroad and having to sample the menus, I ended up two days seriously I'll in bed and no idea of what was wrong, and was very frightened. It's a very scary, upsetting, embarrassing, emotionally/physically draining not to mention painful illness, and I find in general still there is not enough known about
—Guest Tracy


Hi, I'm now 39 and have been suffering IBS for over fifteen year, but was only really diagnosed four years ago, not that this has helped in any way except to put some kind of name to the sheer hell I experience at least once a month. . . I feel for anyone out there that is experiencing the sheer physical and emotional pain that I do on a regular basis, but tonight after reading these post strangely comforted by knowing I'm not alone, even if I feel like I am. I'm experiencing phase 1 as now name it - three days before period due - extreme bloating, cramping, gas constipation, feel sick, dizzy, headache. But what I fear is what comes next the cramping that doesn't stop, just builds and builds until you feel like someone ripping your insides out with their bare hands, until spasm and then it's running to the toilet every few minutes:(. I've tried all kinds of things to make the symptoms less, like peppermint, drinking plenty of water, eating lots of fibre, cutting gassy foods out of my o
—Guest Tracy

There is help!

I have been suffering from IBS for 32 yrs. and have recently figured out how to stop the attacks in its tracks. However, on my period I make sure I have ibuprofen on hand. Okay ladies here it goes: DO NOT take a hot shower it will prolong the pain. DO NOT put anything hot on your stomach. DO NOT lie in bed with the pain. Always find a toilet when you feel the pain coming. The brain tells your bowels to pass. The way to deal with the pain outside of your period time is TUMS, yes I said TUMS. When you feel the attack coming on immediately put two TUMS in your mouth and suck slowly letting your blood stream absorb it. I find that the best TUMS is WAl-MART equate brand. Carry this bottle everywhere with you it is your life line. The bowels is a muscle heat contracts making it difficult to pass your stools ice pack can relax the vowels but the TUMS (Wal-Mart Brand) is the life saver.
—Guest Ellen

Oh my God I've been thinking I'm dying!

I'm 21, I got diagnosed with IBS a few months back but as it wasn't getting better I've been put on mebeverine and Apercap 3 times a day every day for 3 weeks and then back to see how I'm doing, they seemed to be helping a bit until my period came yesterday! Sat on the floor at work close to crying I actually thought I was going to pass out from the pain, I've never experienced anything like it! I've been so worried there's something darker and much more sinister than IBS at play here (no doubt the anxiety caused from thinking I'm dying is making is so much worse) I'm sorry you're all suffering too but so glad to know I'm not alone. Worst thing I have a huge leg cast on right now so can't even lay in a hot bath until the pains go away which is my normal ritual! Back at the doctors in a week or so. Fingers crossed everythings ok. Just wish doctors knew more about IBS instead of just brushing me off like I'm an idiot everytime I'm back there about it!
—Guest Salulie

you're not alone

I suffer from digestive disorder that is what made me get my PhD. It is a lifestyle change... it triggers the nervous system and poorly functioning digestive organs... during periods it messes with hormone balance. Testing your thyroid and hormones can help. Also eating habits have to change with holistic lifestyle habits. For Rx relief found naxophen and muscle relaxers help...natural drugs peppermint oil between meals, digestive enzymes, kelp for thyroid avoid all processed foods and incorporate whole grains. here is one of my secret tips. Use your finger to massage your tongue and gums in the morning it prepares the upper part of your digestive tract for the work of the day. spiritual fitness expert.
—Guest phd in spiritual health /actress

IBS and periods.

I'm 17 years old, and I've been diagnosed with IBS. It makes my period horrible. I get cramps, and stomach cramps. It makes my life horrible.

Absolutely Horrible

I'm 33 and was diagnosed with ibs this year. I had a normal history with my GI tract, no issues except the occasional tummy ache. Well I only wish that was still the case now. With an absolute ton of research I've learned to control the symptoms of gas and extreme bloating with Fennel Tea. The stomach discomfort with Ginger Capsules. Staying away from gassy veggies. BUT when my period comes.....it's like God has left me and the Devil takes residence. The stomach cramping (not counting menstral cramping) becomes so terrible I can't stand it. Diarrhea come with it and I deal with the tag team from hell for hours in end. Throw in terrible menstrual cramps right on too of it and I'm ready to end it all. I come so close to vomiting from the pain. Took Kaopectate and that seemed to help with the cramping and spasms. I am against the meds the docs recommend to help cause all they do is whack me out of my mind. Not an equal trade in my opinion so I study holistic alternatives which work better.
—Guest Tara

ibs hell

i have ibs-a, mixture of both!! at times i cant go and even when i do im dizzy and breathless, its sooooo much worse when menstruating. Mebeverine used to work but now seems to do very little. i suffer from gerd too and have an enlarged thyroid not sure if the thyroid is related to ibs or not! anyone please help x


I haven't had a period for 3 months and my stomach is swollen like a balloon. I have taken 4 pregnancy tests all negative so am not pregnant. My doctor said it sounds like ibs and I will probably need to take laxatives everyday of my life. I take laxatives at least 3 times a week at the moment this is the only way I can go the toilet. It's getting me really down to the point were I don't want to leave the house.
—Guest Rachel

i thought i was dying

im 20 yrs old and this is my first time experiencing anything like this. i'm on my period now and the day it started, i was in unbearable pain. i thought i was having a miscarriage but i knew i wasn't pregnant. i laid in the tub of cool water to relax my back. i was reading up on what i could've been going thru then i found this page and it made me feel better...somewhat. i don't wanna deal with this for the rest of my life. this makes me miserable. i could tolerate it if it's just during my period but i'm scared to have to deal with this 365 days a year. the cramps from the IBS and my period ARE NOT a good combination. A cure for this would be nice. I wish everyone the best. i've only had it for 3 days and i'm ready to rip everything out.
—Guest Nmarieeee

queen b

i have suffered with ibs since i was about 12, have had months sometimes year without it really affecting me, have found the older i get the worse it gets. It has been really bad over the last 3 years, have really bad cramps, feeling like death, feel sick. i have found that it gets even worse a week before and during my period but my doctors says thats norma. they think its down to the hormones but they can not be sure as not much is really known about ibs or what causes it. just wished that more was known about and that people who don't have it were a little more understanding. fed up of having it made out that is not that big of deal and I should just get on with it. I try to but when its really bad all i wanna do is climb into bed until the pain calms down. so nice to see that there are so many other people that suffer the same problems and that i'm not weird.
—Guest claire

Can't take anymore!

I'm a 38 year old mum of two. I've had IBS since I was 12. I can definitely say it is a huge blight on my life and causes me great anxiety. I've had so much counselling but it doesn't help because my IBS symptoms are still there. When I have my period, the IBS becomes unbearable. I actually live my life around my period. Thankfully, my cycle is regular. But I dread if I have to be somewhere when I know my period will be coming. The week before and during I have terrible nausea, very loose bowel and generally feel dreadful. Today I feel like giving up. :(

ibs and perimenopsuse

Omg. Seeing ceedee's response made me realize just how much hell hormones can put us older women through. I've had IBS in the past, mostly due to stressful jobs, but mostly had the constipation. I've also had relatively heavy periods my whole life, though pretty regular when I was on the pill for about 18 years. Now my periods alternate between the extremes of very heavy or very light. Occasionally I skip a period, but it's more likely that I have two in a month. I frequently suffer from low back pain but never knew that could be an IBS symptom. Now at almost 43, I've had the horrible diarrhea and sometimes vomiting, usually the second or third day of my period but today on the first day. I'm also noticing a really cold feeling in my stomach and breasts this time around. Anyone else get that?
—Guest nettie

diarrhea and period

A few days before my period i get very bad cramps and diarrhea..I get so scared and I start thinking stupid thoughts...I also have ibs and bad cramping and during ovulation I get that also..IT gets very annoying and aggravating..dont know what to do at times...Do any of you women feel this way..I also get depressed.
—Guest mickey

Share Your Experience!

How Does Your Period Affect Your IBS?

Receive a one-time notification when your response is published.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.

We comply with the HONcode standard
for trustworthy health
information: verify here.