PLEASE NOTE: PRIVATE REFERRALS WILL NO LONGER BE TAKEN. PATIENTS FROM ROYAL MELBOURNE HOSPITAL CAN STILL MAKE APPOINTMENTS VIA SKNOWLES@SWIN.EDU.AU
FREE online psychological support programs developed by Dr Knowles et al. can be found at:
Irritable Bowel Syndrome: www.IBSclinic.org.au
Inflammatory Bowel Disease: www.IBDclinic.org.au
If you are looking for a psychologist with a GI-focus, feel free to look at the section entitled "Other trained psychologists with a GI interest"
Do you want to overcome or better manage your gut distress?
Confirming what individuals with gut conditions already know, there is a growing body of scientific research indicating that most, if not all, gut related conditions are directly influenced by psychological factors, including everyday stress, anxiety, and depression. This interaction between the mind and the gut is due to a complex neutral network commonly referred to as the Brain-Gut-Axis (or BGA). We know that changes to individual gut activity (and symptoms) can be linked back to changes in the brain, individual behaviours, and the way in which we think about ourselves.
Stress and the way we think about ourselves can not only fuel gut related problems, such as pain, bloating, constipation/diarrhoea, but also other commonly related psychological problems such as feeling anxiety and depression. This is not surprising given that individuals with gut conditions (such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Inflammatory Bowel Disease) are more likely to also report having a concomitant psychological condition when compared to many individuals with other chronic health conditions.
Given this, identifying and reducing stress and the psychological factors that contribute to destabilising normal gut function can be one of many positive steps that can be made to reduce gut related problems. Dr Simon has developed several successful psychological intervention programs (both individual and group-based) for individuals with gut related conditions, including Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Inflammatory Bowel Disease. These programs have been specifically designed to match the specific and common problems associated with each gut related condition.