If you have inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
, you have probably heard your share of strange ideas about what causes it and what makes it worse. Even though research is ongoing, and there have been some significant discoveries, the same old myths and misconceptions about IBD persist. Learn the truth about such myths and how they may have got started in the first place.
Years ago, it was common to assume that all people who had IBD also had a psychological condition that was tied into their digestive problems. It's now known that this is not the case. However, the relationship between mental health conditions (such as depression
) and IBD is actually quite complicated, and can be a tricky field to navigate. Find out how IBD is -- and isn't -- associated with psychological conditions.
One of the most pervasive ideas about IBD is that it's brought on by stress
. Some people with IBD do have their first flare-up during a period of stress, which is possibly why it was thought that stress could cause the IBD. IBD is an idiopathic disease
-- a disease that we don't know the cause of yet -- but it's thought that an interplay between genetics and environment
might be at fault. The case could even be made that living with IBD is what causes people with IBD to develop the signs and symptoms of stress. Read more about the connection between stress and IBD.
People joke that after a while married couples start to look alike. Do spouses also share diseases? Could one spouse with IBD actually give the disease to their mate? For some people, this is a very real concern, and a question that needs answering. There has been some research into the idea that IBD is contagious. However, the results of research can sometimes be misleading, and the study done on this topic is a perfect example. Find out more about the idea that IBD is catching.