Going Back to School with IBS

Kids with IBS at school

A funny commercial currently running on television depicts irritable bowel syndrome as a constant companion who is always ruining your social plans and stealing the fun out of everyday activities. Of course, living with IBS doesn’t have to be that way. But it can pose a special challenge to youngsters who are going back to school this time of year. For those who are dealing with disruptive digestive problems, feelings of anxiety and dread can replace normal “first-day-of-class” excitement. They worry about bathroom routines, taking part in sports, and potential embarrassment. But planning ahead can help them to alleviate some of the problems that might arise. Here are a few simple tips:


  • If you’re a parent or guardian of a child or teenager with IBS, make sure the treatment prescribed by their physician is being followed. An effective solution can lessen many, if not all, of the symptoms of IBS.

  • Communicate with a school counselor or teacher. It’s important to let a trusted educator know that there is a possibility of missed classes. Making these connections at the beginning of the school year will ensure that students are able to make-up any missed assignments or homework.

  • Consider packing a lunch from home. Although school dietitians are becoming more aware of various dietary restrictions, it might be a good idea to bring a lunch that is more likely to suit specific digestive issues – just to be sure.

We hope these tips help. Just remember that the proper treatment can help immensely, so be sure to talk to your doctor about any discomfort you’re experiencing. Enjoy the school year!