What is Crohn's disease and how is it

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Curious fact: Most people with this chronic disease are diagnosed before the age of 30.

Can you imagine what your life would be like if you had Crohn’s disease? Visualize yourself experiencing this inflammatory bowel disease while facing other symptoms like abdominal pain every day of your life, difficulty maintaining a healthy weight, constant fever, etc. This is the reality for about 3 million Americans of all ages and genders. Despite this figure, we often do not know about this health condition, and if we do, we know very little about it, so the first week of December has been established as Crohn’s Disease Awareness Week, with the intention of raising awareness about this serious condition.

What is it?

Crohn’s disease is characterized by inflammation of any part of the gastrointestinal tract, with a higher incidence in the small intestine. It’s a condition that occurs mostly in people between the ages of 20 and 30. It’s more likely when someone in your family has had it. Another characteristic is that the exact causes behind this condition are unknown, however, factors such as viruses, bacteria, abnormal immune system responses, and other genetic factors may be the reason behind their diagnosis. Some risk factors also include being white, smoking, and taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen and naproxen.

Types and their symptoms

People with this disease experience several uncomfortable symptoms, which you need to know to identify a probable case of Crohn’s disease. Although each type of Crohn’s disease has its own symptoms, some of the most common types include:

  • Ileocolitis: Affects the small intestine and colon.
    • Diarrhea
    • Cramps
    • Pain in the middle or lower abdomen area
    • Weight loss
  • Ileitis: Affects the small intestine
    • The same as Ileocolitis
    • Fistulas or abscesses in the lower abdomen
  • Gastroduodenal: Affects the stomach and the beginning of the small intestine
    • Nausea and constant vomiting
    • Appetite loss
    • Weight loss
  • Yeyunoileitis: Affects the jejunum, and the upper part of the small intestine.
    • Mild or severe pain in the abdominal area after each meal
    • Diarrhea
    • Fistulas
  • Crohn’s colitis: Affects only the colon
    • Diarrhea
    • Rectal bleeding
    • Abscesses, fistulas, and anal ulcers.
    • Skin injuries
    • Joint pain

Remember that paying attention to our health is the best way to prevent diseases and treat them if we have any. If you do experience these symptoms, we recommend that you see an expert as soon as possible, as it could be Crohn’s disease, and although it is a disease without a cure, treatment can be helpful tomaintain your quality of life.

Complications

Another reason why it is important to treat this disease is because it can result in serious complications, including those listed below:

– Colon or small intestine cancer

– Infections in the intestines

– Anemia

– Swollen joints

– Lack of nutrients such as vitamin B12 and iron

– Skin lesions

– Among others

Complementary treatment

Many patients with Crohn’s disease resort to different practices that can complement conventional treatment, which primarily includes medication, anti-inflammatory drugs, and immunosuppressants.

The most popular complementary treatment is dietary change, as it has been shown to be beneficial to counteract the symptoms of this disease, establishing a high-fiber diet to prevent constipation and prevent intestinal obstructions. Similarly, your doctor may be looking for other ways to give your bowels a break, so he or she may also prescribe tube feeding, or injections.

Before we get into those things that might help you cope with a diagnosis of Crohn’s disease, it is important to emphasize that complementary treatments are never going to cure a disease, so you should never stop using conventional treatment that has proven to be useful.

Real story

This is the story of Michael, an American citizen. Michael was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease at the age of 11, and what followed was a difficult process: Michael has had to undergo 16 surgeries, with which he has lost much of his intestines; on the other hand, he has also had to receive the nutrients he needs to survive intravenously. Fortunately, he has always had the support of doctors, family and friends, and today, his quality of life has improved, thanks to an intestinal transplant, and he fights so that his illness does not define his happiness.  Read his story here: https://www.crohnscolitisfoundation.org/michaels-story

Health insurance

There are situations that can change life in the blink of an eye. For that reason, in BYBS we focus on finding and assembling health coverages that perfectly adapt to your needs; so that in the event of certain, you know with certainty that everything has a solution.For more information visit our website, where you will find the different coverages, we offer. We have guaranteed approval coverage, which allows you to enroll regardless of your health status, or for those who do not qualify for public health insurance. (healthcare.gov) #CallBlanca (202) 316-4503

Conclusion 

Crohn’s disease is a very serious condition, and it can affect a lot of people. However, there is a lot of misinformation surrounding this health condition, so it is important that we educate ourselves about it, as it may help us to have better health. Visit more resources, learn more, and support those living with Crohn’s disease every day.

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