Be on Alert for These Lesser Known Crohn's and Colitis Symptoms
Most Crohn’s and Colitis symptoms actually take place outside of the bathroom, in day to day life. Learn more about the lesser known struggles associated with the diseases.
Fatigue is an extreme symptom, and many refer to it as the "most under-managed problem." Research backs this statement up, as 1100 people who took part in the Ulcerative Colitis in America survey said that fatigue was actually the symptom they experienced most often - affecting them more frequently than either the urgency or abdominal pain that is most commonly associated with the disease. The results for Crohn's disease were not dissimilar, in a Crohn's Disease in America survey, 60 percent of respondents stated that fatigue was one of their most common symptoms, while 70 percent stated that fatigue was at the very top, being their single most difficult symptom to manage.
Of course, with either Crohn's disease or colitis, inflammation occurs in the digestive tract. However, many do not realize that inflammation outside of the digestive tract can also occur, which is referred to "extra-intestinal manifestations." These symptoms are similar to autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis or lupus.
Nearly 35 percent of those who suffer from Crohn's disease also endure joint inflammation or arthritis at various points. Most commonly, this will be peripheral arthritis, which affects the joints within the limbs. Spinal arthritis is also sometimes experienced, which impacts the spine and the back.
Unfortunately, despite the fact that over a third of those with either Crohn's or colitis endure this kind of inflammation regularly, there is very little discussion of it and therefore minimal awareness. This lack of understanding can cause issues within relationships, the workplace, and more.
Have you ever wondered why exactly it is that we experience fevers when we are ill? The answer is that fevers are our body's response to when we have a disease or infection. Therefore, for people with Crohn's disease or colitis, fevers are extremely common. Sometime it is simply an aspect of the inflammatory process, but at other times it can be a sign that there is a problem or a complication, like an abscess or toxic megacolon.
Fevers are already side effects of Crohn's disease and colitis, but they can become much worse with certain medications that are necessary for treatment.
Often, fevers do not only occur during the day. Night sweats happen frequently, which can impact one's ability to sleep, causing further fatigue and occasional troubles in the workplace due to being overtired. Waking up at odd hours in the night drenched in sweat is never a pleasant experience, and dealing with it repeatedly can be incredibly frustrating. The tossing and turning due to these night sweats can also cause issues within relationships.
Read on to learn more about some other symptoms that may go unnoticed.