Everyday life

Living with Crohn’s or Colitis may mean that you have to adapt your life to manage your condition. 

But this doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy life. Many people with Crohn's or Colitis do well in their studies and are able to work and have successful careers. Read on for inspiration, information and support.

If I’m going to a foreign country before I set off I make sure I know the phrase for ‘Where is the toilet?’- I carry a Can’t Wait Card in that language, too.

Crohn's & Colitis UK member

Get more tips for travellers in our Living with Crohn's or Colitis videos below... 

Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis can mean that life presents some challenges.  These may include:

  • managing symptoms from diarrhoea to fatigue
  • explaining your condition to  friends, family and employers
  • managing your food and diet
  • detailed planning of travel arrangements
  • keeping up exercise when you are feeling up to it
  • claiming benefits or getting insurance
  • coping with the emotional impact of having a long-term condition.

It is often the ongoing and unpredictable nature of the disease that can be especially difficult to live with.  For example, you may suddenly have a worse flare-up than before, or start getting unpleasant side effects which are difficult to manage.

On the other hand, more positively, you may discover that a new drug works better or helps to keep you in remission much longer than usual.

We produce a range of publications to help you live with and manage your Crohn's or Colitis. As part of our Information Standard accreditation, our rigorous review process means that we run all our publications past medical experts and readers (people with IBD). So you know that what you are reading is accurate, evidence-based, reliable, trustworthy and up-to-date.

Videos: Living with Crohn's or Colitis

Our three videos below are full of everyday tips from people with Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.

1. Going out


2. Going on holiday

3. Diet

The Living with IBD Videos were made possible due to the kind support of the Catherine McEwan Foundation. We would also like to thank the University of Hertfordshire for providing film locations

Information sheets

Our information sheets offer clear, detailed information on specific issues.

Living with Crohn's or Colitis

  • Feelings when first diagnosed
  • Helping others understand
  • Practical tips
  • Sources of help and support

Fatigue and IBD

  • Possible causes of fatigue
  • Talking about the problem
  • Ideas for tackling fatigue

Counselling and IBD

  • Why choose counselling
  • What counselling can offer
  • Finding a counsellor


  • Can diet cause Crohn's or Colitis?
  • How you might be able to use diet to reduce symptoms
  • Importance of healthy eating

Travel and IBD

  • Insurance
  • Vaccinations and taking medicines abroad
  • Travelling after surgery
  • How you may be able to avoid travellers' diarrhoea

Insurance and IBD

  • What to consider when looking for insurance if you have Crohn's or Colitis
  • Recommended insurance companies

Smoking and IBD

  • How smoking can affect people with Crohn’s and Colitis differently
  • Guidance from medical professionals

Claiming benefits

We can help you with information about benefits you may be entitled to, and even with elements of your benefit applications.

Check out our Disability Benefits Service. We also produce a number of guides on different benefits which you might like to download here.

Talk to us

Our Information Service provides answers to queries and questions you may have about Crohn's or Colitis, and Crohn’s and Colitis Support which offers emotional support to those who need it.