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Ulcerative Colitis

Intestines

Ulcerative colitis or colitis is a disease associated with chronic inflammation of the colon, that is the cause of diarrhea, abdominal pain and rectal bleeding. Closely related to Crohn's disease, they are collectively referred to as inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD. This disease if somewhat uncommon. Once it has developed, it is usually a disease that lasts for the entire lifetime of the patient. It is also known as ulcerative when there is ulceration of the rectum and colon.

Symptoms

Symptoms may include bloody diarrhea, fever, abdominal pain, weight loss and general malaise. One may also notice rectal bleeding, a feeling of urgency, an inability to have a bowel movement despite the urge to do so and cramping. Colitis causes nutritional deficiencies because minerals and water are not absorbed. This can cause anemia, dehydration and other problems associated with malnutrition.

Causes

The cause of ulcerative colitis is unknown and is thought to be inherited autoimmune. There is no evidence to link this disease to infection and it is not contagious. Some possible causes may include problems with the immune system because the auto antibodies turn against the intestinal epithelial cells. There may be some genetic susceptibility associated with the disease. Smoking is negatively associated with this disease. There may also be environmental factors that affect it. Consuming milk products may make symptoms worse. Appendectomies have an adverse reaction with colitis. It often affects people who have a diet too rich in refined sugars. Flare ups can be caused by stress, infections and using antibiotics.

Cautions

People suffering from colitis or ulcerative colitis need to be under proper medical care. It is recommended that alternative therapies are used in conjunction with medical treatment to relieve the symptoms of this disease.

Herbal Treatments

Internal Applications

To relieve inflammation and soothe the gut:

To ease spasms and diarrhea:

External Applications

Aromatherapy

For stomach cramps, use the following essential oils in a massage or bath: basil, marjoram, peppermint, rosemary. When using oils in massage, add a few drops to 5 - 10 ml of carrier oil, such as jojoba oil.

Used to combat vomiting, use the following essential oils in a massage, inhalation, burner or bath: basil, bergamot and chamomile.

Used agianst diarrhea, use the following essential oils in massage or burner: chamomile, eucalyptus, neroli, patchouli and peppermint.

Ulcerative Colitis Herbal Remedies Top