IBS is a common condition that affects both men and women. There is no single management plan for everyone. Management of the condition will depend on the individual person’s symptoms, potential triggers and lifestyle.

You should keep a diary of what you eat and your symptoms for a month. This will help identify potential irritating foods, which you can then look to reduce or eliminate from your diet.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for IBS. However, these general tips on effective treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can help:

  • Cook homemade meals using fresh ingredients when you can
  • Avoid eating processed, oily or spicy foods
  • Avoid excessive intake of caffeine, alcohol or fizzy drinks
  • Eat meals at regular intervals and do not skip or delay meals. Also eat slowly and chew food thoroughly
  • Reduce stress
  • Exercise regularly
  • Try probiotic supplements
  • Use medications containing antispasmodics (such as Colofac, Senocalm, Buscopan and Colpermin peppermint capsules for IBS) to relieve stomach cramps and pain
  • Use medications containing anti-flatulents such as Windeze to relieve trapped wind and bloating
  • If you get constipation or diarrhoea associated with your IBS you should manage these individually through lifestyle (including diet) changes and medication

You should see your GP if:

  • Your symptoms are not improving after a few weeks of making your lifestyle changes and using medications
  • You need to avoid lots of different foods to control your symptoms
  • You have blood in your stools
  • You have extreme pain in your stomach or bowel

Although all of our content is written and reviewed by healthcare professionals, it should not be substituted for or used as medical advice. If you have any questions about your health, please speak to your doctor.

Authored Nov 04, 2020 by Joseph Issac, MPharm
Reviewed Jun 27, 2022 by Prabjeet Saundh, MPharm