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Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week

Crohn's and Colitis Awareness Week 2020 blog banner


It’s Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week from December 1st through the 7th. It’s an important time to raise awareness about Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, which are two types of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). 180 Medical is always glad to honor this week by sharing helpful resources and wearing purple for IBD awareness. Plus, we are proud to be a trusted ostomy supplies provider for those who live with a colostomy or ileostomy due to IBD.

The Importance of Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week

Both Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are autoimmune diseases that impact the body’s gastrointestinal tract, including the mouth, esophagus, stomach, small and large intestines, and rectum.

These forms of inflammatory bowel disease can create symptoms ranging from mild to severe. Additionally, for some people, IBD can be so severe that it is debilitating and may even impact the ability to work or go to school.

However, the effects of IBD, along with other types of autoimmune illnesses, can be invisible to others. That’s why Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week is an integral part of helping to raise awareness and make IBD visible.

Hannah - Crohns and Colitis Awareness Week 2020

Read on to find out more about these two forms of IBD, common symptoms, and treatment options. Plus, we share some easy ways you can help raise awareness.

Crohn’s Disease Causes and Symptoms

Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory disease that can affect any part of the body’s gastrointestinal tract.

Symptoms can include:

  • Frequent or chronic diarrhea
  • Blood or mucus in stool
  • Abdominal pain
  • Bleeding from the rectum
  • Weight loss that can’t be easily explained
  • Fatigue
  • Reduced appetite

The precise cause of Crohn’s is currently unknown, although it’s not contagious. It may be related to genetics or a virus that triggers an immune response to inflammation.

Treatment options can include medications such as steroids or immunomodulators. Doctors usually suggest medications as the first option after diet or lifestyle changes.

However, when the condition worsens or the symptoms are unbearable, ostomy surgery for severe Crohn’s disease may be the next option.

crohns colitis symptoms

Ulcerative Colitis Causes and Symptoms

While Crohn’s can affect any part of the GI tract, colitis’s symptoms are restricted to the colon and the rectum, and the symptoms are typically continuous versus the off and on again symptoms of Crohn’s.

Symptoms can include:

  • Frequent or chronic diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Bloody stool
  • Fever
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • A sudden feeling that you need to void your bowels
  • Low vitamin D and other vitamin and mineral deficiencies

The suspected causes are the same as Crohn’s, although ulcerative colitis is considered an immune system overreaction.

Treatment options include medications or ostomy surgery for ulcerative colitis. This may require full or partial removal of the colon (large intestine) and/or rectum.

It will depend entirely from person to person on what the best option for treatment will be. Be sure to talk with your doctor about your possible ulcerative colitis treatment options.

Karisa- Purple for Crohns and Colitis Awareness Week 2020

How to Help Raise Awareness for Crohn’s and Colitis

Whether you or someone you know lives with a form of IBD, you probably want to know what you can do to take part in Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week. Here are a few easy ideas that can make a big impact.

Take Steps for Crohn’s and Colitis

At 180 Medical, we’re passionate about doing what we can to give back and help others. One thing we love participating in is the annual Take Steps for Crohn’s and Colitis, which helps benefit the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. In fact, it’s one of the largest fundraising events of the year.

By participating in Take Steps, you are making a direct impact by helping fund treatment, quality of life programs, and research for cures and new medicines for inflammatory bowel disease.

Find your local Take Steps Walk here.

Share Posts About Crohn’s and Colitis on Social Media

These days, sharing posts on social media, such as Facebook, Instagram, Tik Tok, and Twitter, is one of the best ways to help spread awareness and educate others. You can share helpful facts, or if you live with IBD and feel comfortable doing so, talk about your story.

Social media is a big part of helping make IBD visible.

Wear Purple for IBD Awareness

It may seem like a small gesture, but for those with an invisible illness, wearing purple, the color for inflammatory bowel disease awareness, can mean a lot to those living with IBD. Also, wearing purple can strike up conversations about inflammatory bowel disease, which is a great way to help reduce negative social stigma.

At 180 Medical, we wear purple during Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week to show our support both for our customers and loved ones.

Elisa - Purple for Crohns and Colitis Awareness Week 2020

Where to Buy Ostomy Supplies Online

Living with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis is truly a challenge. IBD warriors know how fatigued and rundown these diseases can make you feel. The good news is that there are options for treatment out there, including medication. Also, some people may find relief from severe IBD symptoms after ostomy surgery.

As one of the leading ostomy suppliers in the nation, 180 Medical is proud to be a trusted resource for those living with an ostomy due to their battle with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis. We provide home-delivered ostomy products as well as compassionate support to help make the transition to living with an ostomy easier.

We make it easy to get started. Just take the first step by contacting us, and our caring Ostomy Specialists have got your back the rest of the way.

Get Started Here!

Disclaimer: Please note that this article should not be taken as medical advice nor be used in place of a visit, call, or consultation with a qualified healthcare provider.

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About the Author
Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week
Jessica is the Sr. Marketing Specialist at 180 Medical, and she has been with the company for over 14 years now. She loves getting to be creative in her role and hearing from customers about the positive impact we've made on their lives.

Outside of work, you can find her hanging out with her husband and their dogs or browsing garden centers (where she will almost certainly buy another houseplant she doesn't really need).