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Crohn's Disease Forum » General IBD Discussion » Crohn's Polls » Do you find you flare the same time each year? Weather changes affect flare?


View Poll Results: Does the weather or seasons affect your IBD?
The weather affects my IBD 3 8.11%
The seasons affect my IBD 15 40.54%
The seasons AND weather affect my IBD 8 21.62%
I haven't noticed any difference 11 29.73%
Voters: 37. You may not vote on this poll

01-08-2011, 07:06 PM   #1
Grumbly-Guts
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Do you find you flare the same time each year? Weather changes affect flare?

Have found I always seem to completely obstruct during the summer; and
flare BAD during the start of winter and roughly, straight through to spring.

Has anyone else found there to be a correlation of the weather, and/or seasons with their IBD? I know Thanksgiving and Christmas usuall set most of us off but I am wondering about possible barometric changes, weather/temp changes, lack of sunlight, excess sunlight/heat, damp conditions etc.

My RA tends to be really bad starting March. I don't know why but I can't even open a sippy cup for my son! It's not usually damp or that cold during that time of year...sorry off topic (my meds tend to make me scatterbrained and I end up going off on tangents sometimes! lol).

I also have a friend who finds she flares more in the summer and the winter is her friend.
And if you do find you (or ppl you know with CD) act up the same times each year (either surgery, infections, flares - anything Crohn's related actually, please) can you tell me/us why this happens OR why you think this happens to you or others? Even if you think it sounds silly, I am just wondering if my body's weird and has it's own internal clock to torture me (lol) or if this seems to fit with others as well.

Thank you all who respond,

GG
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01-10-2011, 05:24 PM   #2
Rob.G
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Funny enough, before my Surgery early last year I always flared badly around Christmas time, this Christmas was the first good one I've had in years.
01-12-2011, 10:20 PM   #3
SonWithCrohns
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My son, when diagnosed finally with Crohns in 2007 didnt eat a Christmas supper in three years. This year, he had seconds. I almost cried!! Yes, things seem worse around that time of year. I'm not sure what it is , but just before Christmas things start to go downhill, and don't let up until spring. Now that he is off Imuran things seem to be better. Not sure why, but he seems to be maintaining himself for now.
01-15-2011, 10:11 AM   #4
Grumbly-Guts
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That's really good to hear! Christmas dinner is a no-no for me too, when I'm really desperate for the taste of it I have been known to chew it up but not swallow it, then eat some toast or oatmeal in between (to fill me up) and chew up a bit more of turkey dinner, lol, to get my flavor fix!
I find it interesting that so many people seem to flare this year, i wonder if there has ever been a study on this to see why this happens?

ANyway, congrats to you and your son that he is feeling well and was able to enjoy dinner!! Hope it stays that way for a long time!

GG
01-15-2011, 10:19 AM   #5
Nytefyre
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As far as flaring the same time each year, I would normally say no...but last year around this time I was in a nasty flare, so now I'm not so sure. I will say that I have mini flares throughout the year, but based solely on this time last year and now, I may have to reconsider about major flares.
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01-16-2011, 02:44 AM   #6
SonWithCrohns
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Thanks so much GG. It was great to see him eat! I'm glad to hear that you can still get your flavour fix in as well.lol.
What is it with oatmeal? (porridge in our house) Devin eats it constantly. Every morning, and for snack as well. I wonder if his body gives him that 'craving' for something he actually needs.
I know this probably isn't the place for it ...but has anyone heard of any iron deficiency (anemia) related to crohn's ??
01-16-2011, 02:46 AM   #7
SonWithCrohns
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Probably a silly question Nytefyre...but do you keep a journal or a calender? I find it helpful to track when things are going whacky. It's also great to look back over the years and see where he was ....to where he is today.
01-16-2011, 07:19 AM   #8
Nytefyre
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Probably a silly question Nytefyre...but do you keep a journal or a calender? I find it helpful to track when things are going whacky. It's also great to look back over the years and see where he was ....to where he is today.
I did keep a daily journal for the last 11 months (was required to because of a study I was on for Ustekinumab). It is certainly a good idea. I tracked things such as how many times I went to the bathroom daily, how the poos were formed, what meds I took, what I ate, any extraintestinal symptoms, any pain, blood loss, blah blah blah...after the study was over, I stopped. Now, I will go back to tracking daily, just not so intense.

I do have a long-running journal called The Pain Diaries. I started it in 1999 but don't use it as much as I should. I think I updated it maybe twice in the last year. Reading through it can sometimes be funny, sometimes aggravating, sometimes sad.


It's great to read that your son was able to eat during the holidays!
01-17-2011, 12:37 AM   #9
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I was told by my research nurse ( a very highly respected one) that there are kind of 'high' and 'low' cycles. The low cycles are when you are more likely to get sick. This would be Oct-Feb area. She said its due to lack of sun (Vit D), the fruit isnt as fresh, we dont get as much exercise, some people get SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and many other reasons. It makes sense to me and it happens to me too, like clockwork.
01-17-2011, 11:50 AM   #10
Grumbly-Guts
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What is it with oatmeal? (porridge in our house) Devin eats it constantly. Every morning, and for snack as well. I wonder if his body gives him that 'craving' for something he actually needs.
I know this probably isn't the place for it ...but has anyone heard of any iron deficiency (anemia) related to crohn's ??
LOL, oatmeal to me is a comfort food, easy to digest, warm on the insides and doesn't taste too bad! lol But, it is good for you too, maybe we do crave it? i'm not really sure, lol

As for iron deficiency, from only ppl I have spoken to, this is common with CD. I am anemic as well. I would think this is in part from actual loss of blood. But I'm not too sure.

GG
01-17-2011, 11:54 AM   #11
Grumbly-Guts
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I was told by my research nurse ( a very highly respected one) that there are kind of 'high' and 'low' cycles. The low cycles are when you are more likely to get sick. This would be Oct-Feb area. She said its due to lack of sun (Vit D), the fruit isnt as fresh, we dont get as much exercise, some people get SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and many other reasons. It makes sense to me and it happens to me too, like clockwork.
Interesting to know, so then I wonder if we took a vit D all year and increased it during those times or not at all until those times of year, would these lessen the likelihood of a bad flare during that time?

I think this may go into the book of questions and info, to give to my new GI. LOL but seriously, I am going to check into this! Oh, and if I get any answers I will let you all know.

Thanks again!!
GG
01-17-2011, 01:42 PM   #12
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Yeh, for sure. I find it is very true for me but please, research is always good.
01-18-2011, 12:50 PM   #13
Grumbly-Guts
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Alright, so I found a study completed in Montreal QC, Canada by John H White, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Physiology, Department of Medicine, he works in the endocrinology and metabolism dept. of McGill University.
The study is called (and bear with me as I attempt to attach the link)
"Vitamin D supplements could prevent and relieve symptoms of Crohn's disease, says new study."http://trusted.md/blog/wpho/2010/02/...#axzz1BOV5AMNS


I then sent him an email inquiring further and to my amazment he responded within hours, so I will now attempt to attach that email:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
To: John H. White, Dr.
Subject: Question regarding your findings of Vitamin D and Crohn's Disease


Dr. White,

My name is "GG" and I live in Newfoundland. I have a severe case of Crohn's Disease with a very extensive medical history.
I came across your article while researching a potential link between weather and IBD flare ups. During my research I have entered many support forums and posted threads asking others with Crohn's Disease if they had noticed a correlation with the weather or time of year that their flares are worse; as I have found myself, many other Crohn's sufferers noticed that they tended to flare worse in the winter. This is not to say they don't flare during other times of the year, however, there has been a noticeable difference in the severity during the winter to spring seasons.
After reading through your article I am led to wonder if the flares possibly happen due to the lack of natural Vitamin D we receive from the sun? If this may be the case then would you suggest that taking Vitamin D should be done all year and increased during that time of year, or would you suggest we get it naturally during the "sunny" seasons and then supplement during the not so sunny seasons?
As well, does the vitamin only absorb through certain parts of your digestive tract or can you still benefit from taking these supplements if you have had several resections, particularly the terminal ileum, and the right colon?
I understand you do not have access to my medical records and cannot give me actual medical advice, I am hypothetically asking. I also thought that you would be the most knowledgable on this topic as you preformed a similar study to my question. If you do require further information please feel free to ask. Also, if you know of any more articles that may be related to this I would really appreciate any direction you could give me.

Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you,

"GG"
__________________________________________________ _______________________


Hi "GG",

Thank you for your email. You have obviously researched the subject extensively. Living in Newfoundland, you probably don't make vitamin D in your skin for at least 7 months of the year. Not being a clinician, I do not know where vitamin D is (preferentially) absorbed in the digestive tract. However, it is clear from the literature that malabsorption is a often problem with CD patients.

I would strongly recommend that you have your vitamin D levels checked. I should note in this regard that the Institute of Medicine (IoM) in the United States at the request of the Canadian and US governments recently issued daily recommended intake (DRI) levels for vitamin D that many people in the vitamin D field find very conservative. The IoM suggested that levels of the 25-hydroxyvitamin D form (the stable, circulating precursor of the active form) should be at 50nM or 20ng/ml. It is their job to be conservative and only use the most rigorous clinical data to inform DRI. They considered that only the data analyzing the role of vitamin D in skeletal health was strong enough to meet their criteria. In addition, it should be pointed out that the nutrition community has been 'busted" in the past with other nutrients (e.g. vitamin E), which were subsequently found to be potentially harmful at elevated levels. That being said, my feeling is that there is enough evidence that maintaining circulating levels around 80nM (32ng/ml) would provide added benefit with out any evidence for harm. It is once levels are over 100/40 that small "red flags" start appearing in the literature among other data providing evidence for additional benefit at those levels.

Genetic evidence and other types of studies point to CD arising from a defect in innate immune responses to intestinal flora. There is accumulating laboratory evidence that vitamin D boosts innate immune responses in humans, and this data fits with associations between vitamin D deficiency/insufficiency and susceptibility to infectious diseases in the literature. However, most of the clinical data has yet to reach the level of experimental rigour that the IoM would deem sufficient to include in any recommendations of DRI. This would require (large) randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled clinical trials of vitamin D supplementation. In the CD field I haven't checked the literature for several weeks. However, I did come across one very small trial from Hungary that suggested that vitamin D supplementation reduced the severity of CD flare-ups. Nonetheless, much more work needs to be done.

Even if it turns outs out, the laboratory data notwithstanding, that their is no clinical benefit of vitamin D supplementation on frequency or severity of CD flare-ups, it is a good idea to maintain optimal vitamin D levels because of the long-term benefit for the bone health. You may have to have your vitamin D levels tested on several occasions to make sure that you are supplementing adequately because of potential problems with absorption.

I hope this helps.

Regards,

John White

John H. White, Ph.D.,
Professor,
Departments of Physiology and Medicine,
McGill University,
McIntyre Bldg., Rm. 1112,
3655 Drummond St.,
Montreal Qc, H3G 1Y6

Tel: 514 398 8498
Fax: 514 398 7452




So, that has somewhat answered the question as to whether or not their is a correlation between the weather and flare ups. I find this interesting and will be getting my levels checked and then heading to a holistic center for the "suggested" doses of Vit. D, I will check back in here and let everyone know if I find it helpful or not. I probably won't know anything for awhile as I am suspected to have C Diff. currently (again!).

Hope you find this helpful!

GG

Last edited by Grumbly-Guts; 01-18-2011 at 12:52 PM. Reason: Personal info accidentaly left in pasted email, oopsie!
03-27-2011, 06:31 PM   #14
David
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I've added a proper poll to this thread, so feel free to vote away.

I've personally noticed no correlation between weather or seasons and my IBD.
03-31-2011, 10:49 AM   #15
Sha0913
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My crohns is definitely affected by seasons and weather change, to me its about one in the same. I do really well in the fall and spring, but in the midst of a cold winter I get really crampy and alot of stomach pains and am always flaring, and in the summer the heat makes me not want to eat and if i do eat, i tend to throw up alot, it almost always never fails.
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04-18-2011, 09:51 PM   #16
Keona
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I noticed the cold weather really affects crohn's for me. If I walk in the snow for too long or wait for a bus, etc... not if Im indoors.. I get bad headaches when the barometer changes.. it is all difficult for me to figure out....
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04-20-2011, 11:51 PM   #17
bangarang
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I always flare up between April and May when it starts to get nicer out, any other time Im okay.
04-21-2011, 12:22 AM   #18
tiloah
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I thought the summer was my problem because the heat stresses me out, but now I don't know. I was pretty damn sick this winter.
04-25-2011, 10:58 PM   #19
Gue33
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Spring and fall for me. Maybe it is the angle of the sun, more than likely boredom and depression and eating all the wrong things, brings on a flare.
05-02-2011, 10:48 AM   #20
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I definitely think winter and cold, cloudy days make me flare more, but I think that has to do more with my mood and the fact that I can't be outside enjoying sunlight and warmth. Also, in warmer months I crave smoothies more, I eat better, have access to fresh produce, and get more Vitamin D.
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05-02-2011, 01:02 PM   #21
scoutfinch
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I think the cold makes me flare worse. Whenever I experience a chill (even if it's a sudden gust of cold air from a vent), I can feel my intestines tighten up - which then often leads to full on abdominal cramps and nausea. It also doesn't help that I have iron deficiency anemia which makes me feel cold much of the time.
12-31-2011, 07:22 AM   #22
tlc-x
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No idea why or if it even has anything to do with my IBD... but I flare up mainly around November/december - sometimes early as September.

Also flare up around April/May too.
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09-27-2012, 06:40 PM   #23
orangeleprechaun28
 
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I didn't know if I could actually vote (so I didn't) bc my doctor says I have IBS (unofficially) but I'm quite sure he's wrong and I think it's IBD. I Definitely noticed issues with weather / seasons. I start feeling cruddy 2 days before cold front passes and feel crummy through the storm. I also feel bad through the fall / spring.
09-27-2012, 07:19 PM   #24
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HI. I've found winter and early spring is a really pooey time for me.
09-27-2012, 07:28 PM   #25
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Hello to all out there who share this horrid affliction. I am not feeling too happy as I am newly diagnosed with crohns disease. If I wasn't so tired and exhausted I would probably be rather grumpy but all I can manage is a slight feeling of "I'm not happy"I have been reading other peoples stories and it is rather sad. All these young people just getting started on their life journey and whammy , where do they get to spend the best years of their lives.... On the toilet.
09-27-2012, 07:55 PM   #26
orangeleprechaun28
 
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If I wasn't so tired and exhausted I would probably be rather grumpy but all I can manage is a slight feeling of "I'm not happy"
Your comment made me laugh. Many times when I was tired and grumpy I'd feel like that. However, I would then drink coffee and become an instant jerk (I was still nice to people) when I had the energy to go with the grumpiness. But I'd only get that energy when I was just tired....not sick.
09-28-2012, 03:18 PM   #27
JMC
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I have wondered about a correlation between pollen/hey fever and my flares starting as I tend to get most unwell in the early part of the summer.
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