Diverticulitis is a condition that may occur in anyone. The symptoms may strike without notice. Though there will be negligible symptoms, diverticulitis will be noted and diagnosed only when there is severe pain that won’t subside without medical intervention.
What Is Diverticulitis?
Diverticula are small pouch-formed bulgings that may appear commonly on the lower part of the large intestine or colon. Diverticulosis, or the presence of diverticula, is not harmful as it gets infected or inflamed.
The condition is very common in the 40s. Diverticulitis causes remarkable changes in one’s eating habits and digestive health, as it causes nausea, fever, and abdominal pain.
Causes Of Diverticula And Diverticulitis
Diverticulosis is a common clinical problem that develops due to the naturally occurring pressure imposed on the weak portions of the colon wall. Genetic factors, the environment, and changes occurring in the intestinal microenvironment are considered to be major causes of the condition.
Diverticulosis will be asymptomatic throughout life if the diverticula remains uninfected. A tear, infection, or inflammation of the diverticula due to any reason may lead to diverticulitis. Aging is considered to be the most common reason and risk factor that complicates the condition.
Experts also count obesity, smoking, lack of exercise, high consumption of animal fat, a low-fiber diet, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs as risk factors. Ibuprofen, aspirin, and naproxen sodium come under this category.
Symptoms Of Diverticulitis
Many bowel health-related symptoms point to diverticulitis disease. Most commonly, severe abdominal pain and related symptoms help us diagnose the condition.
- Abdominal pain: severe abdominal pain in the lower left side of the abdomen is the main symptom.
- Fever: Fever and feeling feverish will be there as there is an infection.
- Bloating, nausea, and vomiting: nausea and vomiting that mimic the symptoms of gastric problems are remarkable symptoms here.
- Abdominal tenderness: pain while exerting pressure on a particular point of the abdomen.
- Constipation: Constipation, diarrhea, or obstruction in bowel movement are also considered to be common symptoms of diverticulitis.
It is not easy to identify the symptoms of diverticulitis, as it resembles many other healthy digestive health-related conditions. Routine tests like urine tests, stool tests, and blood tests won’t help you relate your condition to diverticulitis.
Your healthcare provider may suggest a CT scan to learn more. Colonoscopy is the other method for diagnosing diverticulitis, as it allows you to examine your colon with a lighted scope. Dooctiers recommend colonoscopy only if the condition is severe.
How To Prevent It?
There are no written rules for preventing diverticulitis, as there are also genetic and environmental factors behind the disease. Even though certain preventive measures help us stay away from the disease to some extent, Drinking plenty of water is one of the strategies, as water is necessary for fiber to get absorbed.
Drinking water makes the entire bowel flow easy and prevents constipation. Regular exercise also plays an important role in keeping bowel health normal. It reduces pressure on the colon and prevents diverticula from causing infections. A high-fiber diet is the most suitable method of preventing diverticulitis, as it softens the bowel movement.
Fiber-rich food is essential for digestion, absorption, and the formation of soft waste material that can easily pass the colon without exerting pressure on it. There is a myth associated with consuming nuts and seeds and diverticulitis.
Experts state that there is no relationship here. Seeds and nuts are highly nutritious and rich in fiber. It is also recommended by health experts to reduce or avoid smoking, as it increases the risk of diverticulitis.
Is Diverticulitis Curable?
Diverticulitis is curable, and doctors decide on the treatment plan after examining the severity of the condition. In acute cases, a sudden pain will pop up and get cured easily by oral medicines.
There are also chronic cases in which the condition is repeated. Lifestyle changes in diet and exercise patterns will also benefit the customer while taking medication for the condition. Doctors suggest surgery if there are complications such as bowel obstruction, severe abscess, or bleeding. Bowel resection, or colectomy, is performed to cure the condition. The diseased part of the colon will be removed, and the two healthy ends will be reconnected here.