My Tips for Getting Gassy at Work
We know that Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis are very unpredictable.
You never know when it is going to start up. With my symptoms, I always have to be on the lookout for bathrooms. Not just the bathroom, but safe spots to let go of gas.
Gas at work with Crohn's or ulcerative colitis
I've recently been having lots of gas and bloating issues. I'm a teacher, and I walk around school all day holding this air in. I can hear my stomach gurgling like it is trying to tell me something.
Sometimes, my students and fellow teachers can hear the spasm. I play it off, but in reality, the gas aches become quite painful. I did speak about this a few articles ago, but I have an update on what to do.
I would of course excuse myself from my classroom. This is allowed because I have an accommodation plan put into place.
This plan allows me to leave the classroom when I need to, and also puts a teacher’s assistant in my room. It is a legal document that covers me just in case something happens in the classroom when I am gone. This rule has been a lifesaver for me.
Releasing gas in work bathrooms
Once I excuse myself from class, I make my way to the adult bathrooms toward the back of the school. I typically know the schedules for the other teachers, so nobody is usually back there when I go.
I use the bathroom, but then make myself lay on the floor. This position pushes the air down past the stoma, and out. Sometimes it is quite loud. But I will tell you, the amount of air that comes out allows my stomach go down quite a bit.
Even though it is quite a relief, I can’ lay there forever. I have to get up when someone walks in. Also, nobody knows that I actually do this.
My passing-gas closet
A few weeks ago, my administration made us clean out our supply closet. Each grade has one, and it contains materials that date back to the 1970s. Our closet was a big mess, but we spent a few hours on a professional development day cleaning it out.
What was left were a few boxes of materials that I wanted to hang onto. There was a lot of space, however, to spread out. You get where I'm going with this, right?
I now have my own “passing gas room.” I know that sounds funny and foolish, but it really does work.
We may be gassy, but we're also creative
Nobody ever has a reason to go in my passing-gas closet. If I keep the lights off and enter when nobody is looking, nobody will know that I am there.
I can be as loud as I want because it isn’t connected to another bathroom or classroom. Finally, it gives me the peace of mind to pass gas, without being embarrassed.
I ended up making the room very homey. I added a small rug in the back to make it more comfortable. Now when I have really bad gas pains, I excuse myself to my pod.
Nobody knows, and nobody will find out. You have to be creative when you have Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis. We'll do whatever it takes to get through the day.
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