Can SIBO Come Back After Treatment?
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) can be a challenging condition to cope with, as anyone who has experienced it can attest. Its symptoms are often both uncomfortable and difficult to understand and manage. For example, you might always feel uneasy and bloated after eating, even if you haven’t eaten more than usual. There’s also a good chance you start to lose weight even if you haven’t made any dietary changes, which can be pretty concerning.
When you add abdominal pain, nausea, and diarrhea to the mix, you have a persistent condition that can be extremely challenging to get rid of. The bad news is even though individuals with SIBO make the necessary lifestyle changes, there is still a chance for recurrence, which can be discouraging.
The good news? There are best-practice methods that can help prevent SIBO from returning.
Causes of SIBO Recurrence
One common approach to treating small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) is to use antibiotics. Interestingly, some doctors may recommend this course of action even if test results are inconclusive. This is because if the symptoms strongly suggest SIBO, it is often better to treat it with antibiotics sooner rather than later.
The issue comes after treatment, where you’re supposed to follow it up with a few lifestyle changes. Unfortunately, some people are unable to maintain such lifestyle changes for long periods of time, which eventually leads to a relapse of bad habits. It’s also likely for SIBO to come back based on some underlying health issues, which means some people might have a more sensitive gut than others despite experiencing the same symptoms.
Antibiotics are pretty much meant to stop the overgrowth of bacteria, while probiotics are meant to help maintain the proper balance of good bacteria in the gut. You can think of your stomach and intestines as a kind of biome, where a balance between specific types of bacteria is necessary to keep order.
Preventing SIBO Recurrence
The thing about small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is it’s not the type of thing that will go away easily. Even with how effective antibiotics will be, you still need to ensure that you make an effort to keep things in order. For example, sugar intake is one of the leading causes of SIBO, as diabetes can also end up causing SIBO. It can actually get to a point where any type of sugar intake is a bad idea, which means you’ll have to consider sugar alternatives if you want to successfully manage SIBO recurrence.
There’s also the importance of follow-ups and monitoring after SIBO treatment to ensure that things go smoothly. Thanks to the digital healthcare movement, any follow-ups with the doctor can be made online—unless the need for testing arises.
SIBO can be pretty persistent, which is why it’s a good idea to maintain communication with your doctor about how you feel and what you’ve been doing to prevent SIBO recurrence.
Managing SIBO Recurrence
It’s understandable to feel disheartened or stressed if you find yourself experiencing symptoms so soon after you’ve conquered SIBO. You’re going to want to study your dietary habits and figure out how you ended up with the symptoms once again. Keep in mind that SIBO can recur even if you try to do everything in your power to stop it. What works for one person might not work for the other, so it’s an ever-shifting situation where you constantly have to make tweaks.
Some people try to manage SIBO recurrence with the use of herbal supplements, and there are quite a few that most doctors are okay with—you just have to speak with them about what you’re taking. It’s also possible to go through yet another round of antibiotics depending on the situation. Of course, I don’t have to tell you how risky it can be to deal with antibiotics more than once over a short period of time, but there are some situations when the doctor feels it’s the ideal solution.
Tackling SIBO Recurrence the Right Way
Just because SIBO is persistent doesn’t mean you have to feel discouraged. It can be frustrating to deal with SIBO and the prospect of the condition coming back, but it’s something you can easily manage once you get used to a routine. While it may take some effort and discipline to stay on track, it’s definitely achievable. Don’t let the possibility of SIBO recurrence overwhelm you. With consistency and determination, you can take control of your health.