Addressing IBS

Dealing with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms even without seeking treatment can be tolerable for some. IBS includes symptoms such as gas, bloating, abdominal discomfort, constipation and/or diarrhea when other more serious conditions have been ruled out. But if those symptoms get severe that they affect the way you live your life, then you should consider seeking medical attention right away, most especially if over-the-counter medicines you used to take no longer offer you relief. 

The key to managing your IBS symptoms effectively is first seeing a primary care provider. To get the most out of your first visit, you have to get ready to discuss your condition with your doctor or other healthcare provider and receive the right treatment. Use the guide below to learn more about how to prepare for your first visit to address your IBS.

  1. Monitor your symptoms

Correct, effective diagnosis requires you to understand your symptoms. To do this, take note of your symptoms by keeping a symptom diary. Make sure to record your triggers as well as the time of day, foods eaten, stress levels and exercise.

  1. Set an appointment

While some general medical professionals can help you manage your IBS, it is best to visit a doctor who offers the best primary care and specializes in treating and diagnosing IBS, especially if your symptoms are moderate to severe. Make sure to ask if you need to follow any instructions prior to your first appointment, such as fasting or completing paperwork.

  1. Discuss your medical history

During your first visit, the healthcare provider will likely make you complete your family medical history and own medical history. This lets you learn more about your family history of gastrointestinal conditions and personal history, which will be helpful in distinguishing IBS from other conditions

  1. Bring your medical records and medications

If you have any medical records, make sure to bring them along with you during your first appointment. Don’t forget to mention the medications, supplements or diet changes you use to take to alleviate your symptoms and bring any of these to your visit. This way, your healthcare provider will have a better understanding of your symptoms and their potential causes.

  1. Prepare questions you want to ask

Before heading to your appointment, you should list down everything you want to know about your symptoms/IBS and the most effective way to treat it. 

Compile some questions you want to ask your healthcare provider. If you are having a hard time coming up with the questions, here are some you may want to consider:

  • Is irritable bowel syndrome the right diagnosis or is something else going on? 
  • What is the right treatment for my symptoms and what can I expect from it?
  • How can I get rid of my triggers in my lifestyle?
  • What is the prescribed medication I should take?
  • Are there any side effects to my prescribed medication?
  • Are there any diets I can do for this or any supplements? 
  • Are there any tests I can take that can help me determine the cause of my IBS?


When managing your symptoms and treating your IBS, seek medical attention only from qualified healthcare providers. Make sure to prepare for your first visit to get the full benefit out of your appointment.

Let us help you boost your overall well-being with our primary care in Salem, or Hillsboro Oregon. We offer medical services, behavioral health, and nutritionist services. Schedule an appointment today! We frequently treat irritable bowel syndrome with great results and would love to help you.