Advice for the Newly Diagnosed With Crohn’s
After hearing you have Crohn’s disease, you probably felt mixed emotions. Surprise, or maybe relief, for finally getting a diagnosis. Concern for the present and future.
Each person processes the news differently. You might want a walk and fresh air. Maybe you want to talk. But what’s the next step? We asked our InflammatoryBowelDisease.net community what they would tell someone newly diagnosed with Crohn’s, and they had a lot to say.
– InflammatoryBowelDisease.net Community Member
Who did you first reveal your Crohn’s diagnosis to?
Adjusting to changes brought by Crohn’s
You’re probably wondering how life is going to change. More appointments? Tests? Can you even talk to your loved ones about your Crohn’s? There are so many stigmas to deal with when it comes to this condition, and you may feel hesitant about even broaching the subject.
But communication is important, even if it feels awkward sometimes. Your health has to be prioritized in a new way. If you avoid the issue and try to hide your Crohn's symptoms, it can make things so much harder. Find someone you’re comfortable with. Open up and talk honestly about your condition. Connection matters.
“Remember this: you’re not alone.”– InflammatoryBowelDisease.net Community Member
Getting a handle on Crohn’s
Managing Crohn’s can be so challenging. Some days are one step forward. Other days are two steps back. You may even encounter false starts, roundabouts, and the occasional dead-end when trying to figure out ways to manage your symptoms. You won’t be familiar with this new landscape. And that’s okay.
Your healthcare team can point you in the right direction. There’s a bit of jargon you may need to learn, and it never hurts to prepare a list of questions for your next appointment. You can also join a Crohn’s support community, to get connected, and to feel seen and heard.
“Do the research. You are your own best advocate.”– InflammatoryBowelDisease.net Community Member
What’s the most challenging part of managing Crohn’s?
How Crohn’s means making changes
For those living with Crohn’s, diet is a hot topic. There’s so much information out there. One idea to help cope? Document which foods cause flares, and which ones make you feel better. For many, a food journal is an invaluable tool.
The one-size-fits-all Crohn’s diet doesn’t exist. Each person has different sensitivities and reactions. Some folks can’t tolerate dairy, whereas others have trouble with meat. If you’re unsure what’s best for you, consult a nutritionist.
“One thing that helps? Keep a food journal.”– InflammatoryBowelDisease.net Community Member
Putting Crohn’s into perspective
Your diagnosis may feel like it turned your world upside-down. There is a lot of new stuff to learn, and the future may seem more uncertain than ever. But there are ways to help yourself. Learn about Crohn’s, utilize your healthcare team, and connect with a community. Most importantly, know you’re not alone.
Do you keep a food journal?