Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) mainly describes two long-term conditions that inflame your gut. These are Crohn’s disease and ulcerative disease. Although there are no cures for these conditions, there are treatments that can help relieve your symptoms and stop them coming back.
Ulcerative colitis only affects the colon (large intestine). Crohn's disease can affect any part of the digestive system, from your mouth to your anus. There is also a rare form of IBD called microscopic colitis.
You can also get support for IBD from Crohn's and Colitis New Zealand
IBD is not the same as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), which is sometimes called irritable bowel disease. IBS is a common condition that has symptoms such as abdominal cramping, bloating, diarrhoea and constipation. It is treated with lifestyle changes.