Following an IBD Diagnosis, Knowledge Is Power

Following an IBD Diagnosis, Knowledge Is Power
Hearing that IBD diagnosis can cause a whirlwind of emotions. If you've recently been diagnosed, you might initially feel anxious due to the reality and uncertainty of living with a chronic disease. At the same time, you likely feel relief in finally naming the affliction, the distributor of life, and in being one step closer to regaining some control. After the shock has worn off and you’ve gone through the next five stages of grief — denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and testing — you’re ready for the last stage: acceptance. Accepting your new normal involves educating yourself about your disease and what to expect from your medical care so that you can advocate for the best quality of life possible while living with a chronic illness. Education begins with learning disease causes and triggers, the symptoms to look for, and possible treatments and tests necessary to keeping your disease under control and to prevent it from worsening. If you are like me, you probably stopped listening to the doctor after you were diagnosed, as you processed the news, or because you were overwhelmed with information. But even if you were listening, you may want to learn more about your disease. An excellent IBD resource I discovered a few years ago is the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. This nonprofit organization was founded more than 50 years ago and is dedicated to working with medical professionals, healthcare providers, and the government to fund and perform scientific research to find a cure for IBD and to advocate for IBD patients. Both patients and caregive
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