How I Now Manage My Flair Ups in a Better Way

Zerine wedding

Zerine at her wedding recently!

Introduction:
I am 67 and have had ulcerative colitis for over 20 years. It started with Proctitis and then developed into UC. I have a colonoscopy every 2 years. My condition is mild-medium, but wide spread all over my colon. I did have a 17-month remission from flair ups last year, but then it returned Nov 2011. I also had another flair up in May 2012.
My Symptoms:
I have just got over a flair up, which has lasted just over 5 weeks.
My Story:
The good thing for me is that I now manage my flair ups in a much better way. Firstly a lot of mind over matter and trying to think positively to make myself better.
Secondly, RESTING THE COLON! This has made such a difference to how I feel during my flair ups. I only eat very soft, mushy food and I make sure I also chew it properly! It does not seem to matter what I eat, as long as it is very soft. For example: mash potatoes with gravy, very soft overcooked pasta or rice, overcooked squashes, soups, well mashed hard-boiled eggs with mayo, smooth pates, (no other meat), custard, creme caramel, lots of plain yougurt.
I also take aloe vera juice and a multi vitamin/all trace elements drink, which they usually give to elderly people who won’t eat. It’s like a meal in a drink, to get all my daily vitamins, which are missing as I am not having any salads, vegetables or fruit or meat.
For me this has made the flair ups so much more bearable, I don’t have to stay at home all the time, like I use to. I time my going out to ensure I don’t have a problem when I am out. Unlike the U.K., in the USA you at least have toilets easily available all over the place. In the U.K. this is a big problem for UC sufferers.
I hope this suggestion may help some of you, but we are all very different in the way our condition affects us and it tends to be trial and error, doesn’t it?
During a flair up I also take Predfoam, (1 or 2 x per day) which is Prednisole rectal foam and 4800g mesalazine per day. It is a high dose, but it’s only for a very limited time and I always have regular blood tests.
Where I’d like to be in 1 year:
I would like to be in remission again. I have no idea how or why it happened last time, as I did not do or take anything different.
It is also frustrating because consultants seem to know so little about our condition, we are really the experts!
Colitis Medications:
As a preventative I take 2400g mesalazine every day, when I am not having a flair up.
When I have a flair up, I up my dosage of mesalazine andI find Prednisolone rectal foam works best for me, but I have also use Prednisolone suppositories and Mesalazine suppositories, as it is getting better and after a few weeks of the foam.
written by Zerine
submitted in the colitis venting area




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10 Responses to How I Now Manage My Flair Ups in a Better Way

  1. Adam
    Adam July 3, 2012 at 9:42 am #

    Hey Zerine,

    Congrats on your wedding! Way cool!!

    And congrats on finding some ways to get your UC figured out.

    I myself have stayed away from some of the foods you listed like mashed potato, gravy, and rice (i don’t eat any grains for that matter) but if it works for you, that’s great!!

    Cheers to you again, and thanks for sharing your story,
    -Adam

  2. uma July 3, 2012 at 6:26 pm #

    Yes UC is about learning to manage it yourself. Thats what i do too.But adding a probiotic helps a lot.Best wishes.

  3. Zerine
    Zerine July 4, 2012 at 1:34 am #

    Yes, I forgot to mention that with my daily preventative dose of Mesalazine, I also take probiotic, a multi-vit, magnesium, omega-3 oil and a Vit B12 injection every 3 months, as I wasn’t absorbing it in the normal way. I am hoping these make a difference, they were recommended by the nurse at my hospital. Nursing staff are often more open to natural therapies.Regular (every 6 months?) blood tests are also essential to ensure continuing liver and kidney function etc. Zerine

    • Carol from Colorado
      Carol July 9, 2012 at 5:29 pm #

      Do you drink Ensure or Boost. I do make smoothies for myself and squash soaps when having a flare. Soft foods sounds like a good idea too!

      • Zerine
        Zerine July 15, 2012 at 2:15 pm #

        Yes, I take Ensure during a flair up

  4. Maggie July 4, 2012 at 7:56 am #

    Hi, Zerine. I’m glad you found a way to manage your flares. After Christmas I had the worst flare ever and was so sick but I hardly ever lose my appetite but I realized I was going worse after eating. I was going about 20 times a day. I decided to eat less which helped and a call to my clinic helped, they gave me a prescription for Entocort. Since then, I’ve still been flaring moderately to mild, I was reading everything I could on UC and diet and one author suggested using a liquid diet so the bowel doesn’t have to work as hard. That makes huge sense to me after what I went through. I normally eat a lot of yogurt but for some weird reason, my system wouldn’t tolerate it when I was in a severe flare. Now I can tolerate it and eat a of it. Congratulations on your wedding, beautiful wedding party. Thanks for sharing and best of luck to you.

  5. Jenn July 18, 2012 at 8:34 am #

    That sounds great. What do you typically take or eat when not in a flare?

    • Zerine
      Zerine July 18, 2012 at 10:51 am #

      I eat everything

  6. Justin
    Justin July 18, 2012 at 7:34 pm #

    Hey Zerine! I have a question for you. I take aloe Vera juice too but I just kind of guessed how much to drink. How Mich and how often do you drink it?

  7. Zerine
    Zerine July 18, 2012 at 7:48 pm #

    I usually take aloe vera juice when I have a flair up, not all the time. I buy it in 1 litre bottles and finish each bottle once I have started it. I start with 30ml once a day for a few days then build up to 30 mls twice a day. Continue to increase it to 60ml, twice a day. Hope that is helpful.
    I have to admit it is really hard to know what is doing you good, when you take alternative therapies, especially as I always take masalazine any way, every day. I think you just take what you feel comfortable with and have a “gut feeling” that it is doing you good!
    At the moment I am fine……………just hope it lasts for as long as possible.

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