If you’ve recently been diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis (the two main forms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease, or IBD) you may be feeling relief that you can finally put a name to your symptoms.
But you might also be anxious about what happens next and what living with IBD will mean for you.
We’re determined that you should have all the information and support you need to help you manage your IBD. All our publications and support services are available on our website, for when you need them.
Get to know the enemy, get information, talk about it - and then take control - it's your body and your life!
Where can I find information on my condition?
This information is available in more detail in our extensive range of free booklets and information sheets, produced with patients and health experts.
These cover everything from your employment rights through to managing your diet, getting insurance and dealing with specific symptoms and complications.
You may also be interested in attending one of our Local Network’s education and information events that are held across the UK. At these event you can also pick up copies of our publications. Find your closest Local Network.
What sort of treatment am I going to be given?
Crohn’s and Colitis are managed with drugs or, in severe cases, surgery. Some people find relief in dietary therapy or physiotherapy for some of the associated symptoms and complications. Find out more about:
Am I going to be able to live a normal life?
We believe no-one’s life should be limited as a result of IBD, and we’ve made great strides in understanding and treating Crohn’s and Colitis since we were founded in 1979.
With advances in treatment and healthcare, it’s perfectly possible to live a full and successful life with the conditions – as our many ambassadors prove.
Take a look at our page on everyday life to see how other people with IBD manage and minimise symptoms and associated conditions.
We’ve also got a wide range of helpful publications that offer information and advice on dealing with the everyday challenges which may come with Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.
Find out more about living with IBD.
Who can I talk to?
It is helpful to build a good relationship with your GP and your hospital IBD team. IBD specialist nurses can be especially supportive.
Being open about your symptoms and how they affect you will make it easier for your doctors and nurses to make sure you get the right treatment.
Some people with Crohn’s or Colitis can feel embarrassed and upset about having the condition. But if you are feeling this way, you might find that talking about it helps. You may wish to speak to a professional counsellor. Or, you might want to call our confidential listening service, Crohn’s and Colitis Support, which is run by volunteers who have experience of IBD and are trained in giving emotional support.
Find out more about counselling and IBD.
I’m a young person – are there special services for me?
Around 1 in 4 new IBD diagnoses each year are young people under 16. Having a condition like Crohn’s or Colitis when you are young can be especially difficult to manage as the symptoms you experience can be more severe than that of adults.
You may feel isolated and distant from your peers, but we do have information and support specifically aimed at young people and families that can help. For example, you can get family membership of Crohn’s and Colitis UK and meet other families and young people in the same position.
If you’re aged 16 or over, or you’re a student, you can become a member in your own right, for free, and take advantage of all that membership offers.
Many young people get involved with fundraising, campaigning and events, too. Plus, we have publications aimed at young people and families.