Lately I have found some great IBD and ostomy “mythbusters.” Please check these out. Seriously, I wish more people knew this stuff.
From Sara at Inflamed and Untamed:
From University of Michigan, Dr. Peter Higgins: IBD School 109
I would also like to add a few of my own busted myths (that I hope you haven’t encountered):
1. Inflammatory Bowel Diseases are contagious. For crying out loud, Crohn’s disease is NOT contagious, and you will not get sick from being around me!
2. If you do everything the doctor tells you, your health should be fine. Following doctors’ orders does not fix everything. They are not perfect, and treatments have limitations. The “miracle of modern medicine” can only take you so far.
3. People with ostomies can’t go swimming or get their bags wet. Ostomates can definitely swim and enjoy water sports. Personally, I can enjoy beaches more now than I could with a full set of organs.
4. You should always do your best to hide your health condition from everyone in your life. This is absolutely false, and the sentiment behind it has deeply frustrated me. I believe you should be free to openly discuss your health with whomever you choose, and while you need to find your own balance and comfort zone, you should not feel obligated to actively conceal your physical issues for the benefit of others. So what if you look a little sickly or are feeling a little down? It happens. Caring for yourself needs to be a higher priority than worrying about how others perceive your situation.
5. Maybe your mother caused you to get sick by feeding you the wrong foods when you were a kid. Whatever the causes of IBD, which are still not entirely understood by the medical community, there is no way to prevent the development of these devastating illnesses. For those of you with ostomies due to cancer, injuries, or congenital issues, your mom didn’t cause those either. You might already know that, but please make sure your mom doesn’t blame herself at all. Mine still does. She wonders if she could have done anything to prevent my suffering. The answer is no.
Okay, those are my myths for now, but I am sure this will be an ongoing list.