Your doctor can't prescribe a single treatment to cure your IBS. This condition affects people in different ways, and you might have to try different treatments and dietary changes before you bring it under control.
If you're struggling to manage your IBS, then it might be worth talking to your doctor about taking peppermint oil. How does this oil work on IBS symptoms and how should you take it?
How Does Peppermint Oil Help Control IBS?
Peppermint oil does help some IBS patients. It can alleviate and control some symptoms. However, it isn't yet clear how this works exactly or why it doesn't work for everyone.
It appears likely that the menthol content in peppermint oil is the significant factor here. Menthol can have a soothing effect on the stomach and colon that reduces IBS pain and discomfort.
For example, your colon is usually a problem area when you have IBS. Its nerves and muscles become more and more sensitive as your condition worsens. This increased sensitivity can trigger more IBS symptoms and attacks.
If you take peppermint oil, then the menthol in the oil eventually moves through your system and into your colon. Its soothing and cooling action can help relax muscles and make them less sensitive. It can also cool areas of inflammation and reduce your sensitivity pain. Your IBS symptoms might reduce and become more controllable.
What's the Best Way to Take Peppermint Oil as an IBS Treatment?
If peppermint oil is a viable way to control your IBS, then you usually need to take it in capsule form. You can't simply drink peppermint tea or use peppermint extracts and expect effective results. You need to swallow capsules to get the oil down into your stomach where it will be released in the right places and start to work.
While peppermint oil works well for some IBS sufferers, you shouldn't start to take capsules without your doctor's approval. Like any supplement, you need to take the right dosage to see the best results without causing yourself any harm.
Your doctor can help you assess if this is a suitable treatment for you based on your history of IBS and any other medications or treatments you are taking. They might be happy to recommend a dosage plan as long as the oil won't interfere with other treatments or your general health.
To find out more, contact your doctor or IBS treatment clinic and ask them for advice.