What Is Bacterial Overgrowth and How Do I Treat It?
Are you suffering from small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) in your digestive system and don’t know what to do about it? Millions of Americans are experiencing gastrointestinal symptoms and distress each year and it’s growing. Bacterium naturally occurs in our digestive tracts, especially in the colon. It becomes an issue when there is excessive bacterial growth in the small intestine. If this is bothering you, it’s time to do something about it.
The small intestine is the place where digestion begins and nutrients are absorbed into the bloodstream. Bacteria help digest food in a healthy system. The problem begins when bacteria becomes excessive and takes over the small intestine. The bacterium can actually consume some of the nutrients. Here is why this is an issue:
- SIBO can lead to poor absorption of essential nutrients
- Your body can become deprived of certain vitamins and iron
- May lead to stomach lining damage
- Can lead to gas, bloating, and pain
- It is more serious than Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
This is a chronic condition that can be cured by our team of digestive medicine specialists.
Detailed Symptoms of Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth
How do you know if you have SIBO? The symptoms are similar to other GI disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome. This is why you need to seek medical help right away. Watch for:
- Gas and bloating
- Nausea, joint pain, and fatigue
- Diarrhea and vomiting
- Malnutrition and weight loss
- Acne, rashes, eczema
- Asthma and depression
Do you have these symptoms? Specialists at Digestive Medicine Associates will be able to correctly diagnose which condition you have and treat it accordingly.
Underlying Causes and Conditions of SIBO
Research has shown there are common causes and underlying conditions that lead to bacterial overgrowth. Being aware of them lets you know if you may need to seek medical help:
- Food digestion associated with aging
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Chronic pancreatitis
- Abdominal surgery
- Certain medications
- Immune system disorders
- Celiac disease
- Worms and parasites
- Blind Loop Syndrome
SIBO is associated with a wide range of causes and conditions. Our doctors will be able to sort them out and treat your condition.
How This Bacterial Overgrowth Can Be Treated
Your doctor will attempt to identify any underlying causes and go from there. Once properly diagnosed, SIBO can be treated in a number of ways. Antibiotics are the starting point to getting well, although the relapse rate can be high. In fact, the symptoms can increase during relapse. It takes a long-term change in diet and perseverance to cope with this condition. Some foods that need to be avoided will be explained by your doctor.
Some patients respond well to antibiotics. Some types of herbal remedies can help those who do not respond to antibiotic therapy. A healthy diet will be prescribed to overcome the nutritional deficiencies. Reducing your intake of food helps because there will be less food sitting in the stomach to interfere with gastric juice production. Eating probiotic-rich foods helps to improve SIBO.
A healthy diet will help repair the intestinal lining and eliminate the bacterial overgrowth. It will also help ease the inflammation you are experiencing. There are a few other simple things you can do to help. Drink enough water each day to stay properly hydrated. Participate in regular exercise and engage in stress reducing activities.
Our Commitment to Quality
Digestive Medicine Associates’ team is committed to excellence in patient care and the development of lifelong relationships with the residents and visitors of South Florida. We believe in promoting both the highest level and quality of care with the greatest degree of compassion. Our facilities and offices use state-of-the-art equipment. They are designed to help us provide our patients with the best service possible. Most of our physicians have more than 25 years of experience delivering consistent and high quality care.
Schedule an Appointment with One of Our Specialists
We are excited to help you with small intestine bacterial overgrowth. Start by contacting your primary care physician for a referral or call to schedule an appointment with one of our specialists to diagnose and begin your program. We are here to serve your health needs and look forward to building a long-term relationship.