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Yes, it’s possible for children to have IBS. It’s most common to develop IBS in your 20s or 30s, but it can start in childhood. Children experience tummy pain and constipation or diarrhoea, like adults. They may be less likely to have bloating and other symptoms though. If your child is getting regular symptoms, contact their GP.
See our About section to find out more.
There isn’t much good-quality evidence to confirm if probiotics can help with symptoms of IBS. But some research has shown that they may be helpful, especially with bloating.
If you decide to try probiotics for IBS, it’s recommended to take them for at least 12 weeks to see if they help. A dietitian may advise a stronger probiotic if they feel it would help.
You can find out more in our section on diet and lifestyle.
In inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), your symptoms are caused by inflammation in your bowel. In irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a disruption between your brain and bowel leads to symptoms. IBD can cause certain symptoms that you don’t get with IBS – for example, bleeding from your back passage.
Our section on symptoms has more information on the different conditions that cause bowel symptoms
The three main symptoms doctors look for in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) include:
- pain or discomfort in your tummy
- your tummy looking bloated
- a change in bowel habits – for example, constipation or diarrhoea
There can be other symptoms too. Read our section on symptoms to find out more.
Certain things have been associated with triggering irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). These include a stomach infection, inflammation due to another condition and taking certain medicines. If you have IBS, certain foods or feeling stressed or anxious may trigger a flare-up.
Our section on causes has more information.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is different for everyone. Some people may get mild symptoms. Others may have symptoms so severe that they interfere with everyday life. You may get diarrhoea or constipation or a mix of both. You may get tummy pains and bloating too.
For more information see our section on symptoms.
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