Have you noticed your irritable bowel syndrome is worse in the morning, that you’re having more diarrhea at that time than at any other time of the day?
Is there something about sleep that leads to worse IBS-D in the morning?
Or could this be related to morning activities, assuming that the diarrhea occurs at some point after you’ve been up and about?
First of all, you need to be positively sure that you have irritable bowel syndrome.
This “disease of exclusion” should never be a diagnosis in the absence of a colonoscopy, no matter how young you are.
Other conditions, that require different treatments, can mimic it, especially microscopic colitis.
So if you haven’t had a colonoscopy but are suffering from symptoms that have been diagnosed as IBS, you need to schedule a colonoscopy.
IBS and Morning Diarrhea
Why might diarrhea be worse in the morning?
“Diarrhea in the morning may be related to the type of breakfast consumed,” says Lawrence Hoberman, MD, a board certified gastroenterologist and creator of EndoMune probiotic products.
“For some individuals it may relate to problems digesting and absorbing dairy products, or fructose- and sorbitol-containing fruits.
“Coffee can also lead to diarrhea.”
See what happens when you change your morning diet.
However, there is another factor that could be at play for those with IBS-D.
“Stress in the morning may also be a factor leading to diarrhea,” says Dr. Hoberman.
Morning is the most stressful part of the day for some individuals. This can easily be triggering diarrhea.
How to Reduce Morning Stress
• The evening before, lay out the clothes you and any young children will be wearing the next day.
• Prepare as much of your breakfast as possible to save time the following morning, such as cracking eggs and putting them in a bowl; pouring cereal into a bowl; washing fruit; etc.
• Have your next day’s to-do list already made up.
• Make any other preparations ahead of time when possible.
The Great Mimicker of IBS-D
Microscopic colitis is often misdiagnosed as IBS-D in younger patients.
But older people can also get a misdiagnosis.
Learn more here about this often misdiagnosed condition.
With 40+ years’ experience, Dr. Hoberman is an expert in probiotics. He has extensive first-hand experience treating a variety of digestive health issues and has seen the dramatic results probiotics have had on his patients.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.