SIBO, aka small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, is a condition where too much good bacteria is in the wrong place (more on that here). How do you know if you have it? There is a simple breath test that can help determine if you have SIBO. The test must be ordered by a healthcare professional, but it can be done in the comfort of your own home.
What are the main symptoms of SIBO? When should I consider getting tested for SIBO?
Abdominal pain, extreme bloating, nausea, and diarrhea are all common symptoms of SIBO. You may also feel worse after taking probiotics, and better when you are fasted. Before you jump onto doctor google looking for the cure to SIBO, you should know if your symptoms are actually caused by SIBO or something else.
Can your naturopathic doctor test for SIBO?
SIBO can be detected through a simple, non-invasive breath test. To complete the test, you ingest a sugar solution, and then over the course of 3 hours, give several breath samples. The breath samples are sent to a lab and tested to find out which gasses they contain. This gives us an indication of what bacteria are present in your microbiome, and where (more on the microbiome here). A diagnosis of SIBO allows your care provider to target your treatment plan, in order to clear up presenting symptoms, prevent them from coming back, and promote healthy digestion.
Can you do a SIBO test at home?
While your family doctor, gastroenterologist, or naturopathic doctor must order the SIBO breath test for you, the test can be done from home. Make sure you talk to your provider to get clear instructions on the test, in order to make sure the results are as clear and accurate as possible.
If you have more questions about how naturopathic medicine can help with digestive health, you can book a free 15 minute meet and greet with Dr. Elena Moore, ND.