As dramatic as the title sounds, going out in public can feel like a daunting task when you have IBS, anxiety, or both! There is the constant fear that you won’t be prepared for the worst case scenario. What if I have a panic attack? What if I need to go to the bathroom? What if I stress myself out so much I simply melt myself out of existence? There’s no shame in these ‘what if’ questions, no matter how unrealistic, and while I am on the journey to stop asking them, in the meantime, I built myself a kit so I always have an answer.
This post was brought on by the fact I made the decision to get off my butt and get a job, and in all the excitement, I forgot how scary starting a job can be. It brought a whole minefield of anxieties which in turn triggered by IBS. The morning of the very first training day, I had already spent 30 minutes of my time in the bathroom. It took all of my power to get me out of the door and onto a bus. I then spent 10 minutes in the bathroom before the training started, thanking the heavens I had brought Imodium, and wiping the sweat off my face. LOVELY. This is why I always keep a kit on me. There will never be a day I need everything in there (hopefully) but there’s comfort in knowing you have the option.
What’s in My Doomsday Kit?
Naturally, this does not fit in the kit but rather goes inside your bag, but nevertheless, it’s an important item. I put peppermint tea in a travel mug, and take it with me, to sip before work. Personally, I think the tea works better for me than any of the drops or tablets ever had. It’s incredibly soothing and helps keep nausea and stomach cramps at ease, especially in the morning.
Extra Strong Peppermints:
Similar to the peppermint tea, these help with nausea. Their overwhelming taste overrides the sickly feeling in my stomach.
It is fairly self-explanatory why this is high on the list. For those with nervous stomach or IBS-D, Imodium can be a lifesaver. I don’t use it every day because I am quite sensitive, often having to half the dose, but it keeps my mind at ease. I don’t spend my entire day thinking I’m about to explode because the tablet will probably make me constipated for the next three days. (too much?)
An IBS’ sufferers best friend. You should never be ashamed of having to go to the bathroom, but often it cannot be helped. It especially doesn’t help if there is a smell, that leaves people asking “Oh God, who did that? I might die.” However, this little spray bottle can be used before you go and blocks the scent. This is new to my kit so hasn’t been fully tried and tested, but I like it.
Luckily, I cannot say I have ever needed to use these. But when the creeping question in my head asks, what happens if you just explode?! What will you do?! It’s nice to have an answer
Hunger=Nausea. Nausea=Anxiety. Therefore I bring along little (non-perishable) snacks that I can eat quickly if I ever feel that happening. I typically use Nairns Biscuits, as mentioned in my GlutenFree snacks post.
Bach Rescue Remedy Drops:
Warning: Awfully weird aftertaste, but definitely worth it. These are a herbal aid to relaxation. I found these especially helpful at the height of my panic attacks. They seemed to slow down all the symptoms, allowing me to think and bring myself back down. I know a number of people who have used them, particularly before exams or presentations. Personally, I can never be 100% sure whether something is working or whether it is placebo, but if it helps, I’m not going to find out.
Paracetamol or Ibuprofen:
Another obvious one. I tend to choose Paracetamol over Ibuprofen, simply because the latter can hurt my stomach on occasion.
This was a trick given to me by my counsellor for when I was away from home. I got a small tester bottle of the perfume my mum always uses, and when I got too anxious, I would rub it on my wrists. The familiar smell made me feel like I was in the safety of my home with my mum. I often use this before an anxious situation as a preventative.
That’s all Folks! Everything in my Doomsday Kit. You’ll find loads of people with these type of kits, all slightly different to suit them. Please do pinch ideas off mine to suit your kit!
Do we have any of the same items? Let me know!
This kit helps to make me less,
Anxious and Hungry