How Does It Work
Some people believe that following the BRAT diet can provide several benefits for those with an upset stomach and diarrhea. The apparent benefits include:
- Firmer stools. The foods in the diet are starchy and low in fiber, which may cause loose and runny stools to bind more easily.
- Gentle on the stomach. The foods are low in fat and protein, meaning that they are unlikely to irritate the stomach and put stress on the digestive system.
- Reduced nausea. Due to their bland flavor and lack of strong smells, BRAT foods do not tend to cause nausea or vomiting.
However, these foods do not have varied enough nutrients to warrant the long-term use of this diet.
Q: How Can I Prevent Or Get Rid Of Constipation
A: Dr. Zutshi emphasizes the big three: Water first. Fiber next. Exercise third.
- Water: Drink a lot. Juices, water, tea and coffee count toward your water intake. People who have normal bowel movements should aim for at least 64 to 80 ounces of water daily. Those who tend to be constipated should drink more.
- Fiber: If you cant get enough fiber from food, talk to your doctor about a supplement. Good supplements to try include Metamucil®, Citrucel® or Benefiber®.
- Exercise: Increasing your exercise can be as simple as walking more. You dont need to be a hardcore athlete.
If you think youre having issues with constipation, Dr. Zutshi advises you to be proactive.
See a gastroenterologist to figure out if everything is OK. And if you have not had a colonoscopy, and youre over 50, its time to schedule one.
Constipation In Adults Prevention
- Develop regular bowel habits. Set aside time before or after breakfast to use the toilet.
- Do not ignore the desire to defecate. Answer natures call to empty your bowel as soon as possible.
- Eat a well-balanced diet that includes wheat grains, fresh fruits, and vegetables. Recent evidence suggests that increasing dietary fiber intake may help some people with hard stools, but is not necessarily of benefit in every person with constipation.
- Drink plenty of water and fruit juice.
- Exercise regularly. Walking is especially important.
- Avoid intake of medications that may cause constipation. Discuss the medications and OTC products you current take with your doctor or pharmacist.
- The use of laxatives can make a constipation problem worse in the long-term and should be avoided.
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Causes Of Recurrent Stomach Pains
- Stress or Worries. The most common cause of frequent stomach pains is stress. Over 10% of children have a “worried stomach.” These children tend to be sensitive and too serious. They often are model children. This can make them more at risk to the normal stresses of life. Examples of these events are changing schools, moving or family fights. The pain is in the pit of the stomach or near the belly button. The pain is real.
- Abdominal Migraine. Attacks of stomach pain and vomiting with sudden onset and offset. Often occur in children who later develop migraine headaches. Strongly genetic.
- Functional Abdominal Pains. Functional means the stomach pains are due to a sensitive GI tract. The GI tract is free of any disease.
- School Avoidance. Stomach pains that mainly occur in the morning on school days. They keep the child from going to school.
How To Get Rid Of Stomach Cramps & Aches
There are many possible causes of stomach cramps and they can affect or emanate from your digestive organs, your appendix, your aorta, your kidneys, or your spleen, or they can originate from an infection elsewhere in your body. Stomach cramps are painful but it is possible to relieve them using home remedies easily and effectively.
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Alginate Drugs Such As Gaviscon
Gaviscon is probably the best-known heartburn therapy. It has a different mode of action than antacid drugs. Alginate drugs such as Gaviscon vary slightly in composition, but they usually contain an antacid.
The alginic acid works by creating a mechanical barrier against the stomach acid, forming a foamy gel that sits at the top of the gastric pool itself.
Any reflux is then relatively harmless as it consists of alginic acid and not damaging stomach acid.
The active ingredientalginateis found naturally in brown algae.
If you want to buy Gaviscon, then there is an excellent selection available online.
Using Apple Cider Vinegar As A Stomachache Cure
Another paradoxical-sounding remedy is using acidic drinks to relieve pain from gastric reflux. Since gastric reflux can result in stomach acid leaking out into places its not wanted, your stomachs acidity can end up lower than is optimal for digesting food.
Drinking apple cider vinegar can help improve the levels and ease an upset stomach. This assumes that youre able to, well, stomach the drink in the first place. While apple cider vinegar does its work best if taken raw, you may find mixing it with water, a teaspoon of honey, and sipping slowly to be the more tolerable option.
- Add one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to one cup of warm water.
- Mix in one tablespoon of honey.
- Drink this remedy every three hours until pain is gone.
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Stomach Cramps With Bloating
Stomach cramps with bloating are often caused by trapped wind, or constipation. This is a very common problem that can be embarrassing, but is easily dealt with. Your pharmacist will be able to recommend a product, which can be bought over the counter to treat the problem. If problems persist, you should see your GP.
Bleeding And Ruptured Blood Vessels
The stomach is full of blood vessels, including the aorta, which is the bodys largest blood vessel.
A ruptured aortic aneurysm occurs when a bulge in the aorta breaks. An aortic dissection happens when something cuts or punctures the aorta. Sustaining any tear or rupture in the stomachs blood vessels is a life-threatening emergency.
The main symptom of a ruptured blood vessel in the stomach is sudden, unexplained, extreme pain. Some people also experience shortness of breath, a racing heart, and dizziness.
People who know they have an abdominal aneurysm should treat any stomach pain as an emergency. On arrival at the emergency room, they must tell the physician about the aneurysm.
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Take Some Deep Breaths
Deep breathing may help with gas pain. But this only tends to work if it’s something you practice regularly.
Since deep breathing from the diaphragm is so effective for reducing stress, it’s worth taking the time to learn how to do it. You can then use this breathing technique as needed for future gas attacks.
Can Abdominal Pain Be Prevented
Eating enough fibreand doing regular exercise can help prevent constipation and keep your bowels working well, which will prevent some forms of abdominal pain. It will also reduce your long-term risk of some diseases, such as diverticular disease or bowel cancer.
Drinking plain water but not carbonated or fizzy drinks will reduce the chance of pain from bloating as well as keeping your body healthy.
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What Are Treatments For The Causes Of Constipation
There are several principles in approaching the evaluation and treatment of constipation. The first principle is to differentiate between acute and chronic constipation. Thus, with acute constipation or constipation that is worsening, it is necessary to assess for the cause early so as not to overlook a serious illness that should be treated urgently. 2) start treatment early of constipation and use the treatments that have the least potential for harm, which will prevent constipation from worsening, and it will prevent potential damage to the colon that can be caused by the frequent use of stimulant products. 3) know when it is time to evaluate the cause of chronic constipation. Evaluation for the cause of chronic constipation needs to be done if there is no response to the simple treatments.
How To Handle Your Upset Stomach
An upset stomach does not require medical attention in most cases. Pain or discomfort from an upset stomach is typically acute and will go away on its own, or with home treatment. However, its important to realize that many different things can cause an upset stomach or stomach pain. Be aware of these causes, find out how to treat an upset stomach, and learn when to speak to a medical professional.
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Using Hot Water Bottles To Relieve Stomachache
Hot compresses can help soothe stomach pain. The word hot is used loosely here, since the desired level of heat will depend on both the level of pain and personal preference.
Fill the bottle or similar object with warm or hot water, place a cloth between it and your skin, and find a comfortable place to lie down.
- Place the hot water bottle, or a cloth soaked in hot water, on stomach for a five- to 10-minute treatment throughout the day.
- Take a warm shower or bath twice a day for 15- to 20-minute intervals.
Gut Feeling: How To Know If Stomach Pain Is Serious
Abdominal pain is the single leading reason for emergency room visits in the U.S. according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, accounting for more than 12 million of the nearly 139 million annual ER visits. Most people call it stomach pain, but it’s not always a stomach problem. Your abdomen holds many other organs, too, including your intestines , pancreas, liver, gallbladder, kidneys, spleen and appendix.
So its not surprising that, just as with chest pain or a headache, it can be difficult to tell whats really going on in there when your tummy’s not feeling well. Add in other vague symptoms such as nausea and vomiting and you could have the stomach flu, food poisoning, gallstones, kidney stones or any number of other conditions.
Here are some ways to tell what the source of your pain is and when you should seek medical care.
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When To See A Doctor
An upset stomach and indigestion should not usually cause concern. For most people, symptoms should go away within a few hours. As older adults and children can become dehydrated much more quickly, they should seek medical attention for vomiting and diarrhea that lasts for more than a day.
People with severe, frequent, or persistent stomach problems should talk to a doctor. It is also best to seek medical attention if the following symptoms are present:
- continual or uncontrollable vomiting or diarrhea
- chronic constipation
Treatment For Abdominal Pain In Adults
Your treatment depends on what is causing your pain, but may include:
- Pain relief your pain may not go away fully with painkillers, but it should ease.
- Fluids you may have fluids given into a vein to correct fluid loss and rest your bowel.
- Medicines for example, you may be given something to stop you vomiting.
- Fasting your doctor may ask you not to eat or drink anything until the cause of your pain is known.
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Constipation Produces The Following Symptomswhich Can Cause Stomach Pain
This cause of stomach pain that is annoying and irritating. These arent usually too much trouble unless:
- A fever is present
- Cramping lasts more than 24 hours
Stomach cramps usually come from constipation, gas, indigestion, and bloating.
This results from backed up stool in the colon.
This backed up stool causes problems with the whole gastrointestinal tract. The regular function of moving food into the digestion processes is slowed down, which can result in nausea.
The following can also cause nausea:
- Distension of the colon
- A bowel obstruction
A full feeling
When constipated, have you experienced a bloated, distended stomach? Then in a few hours perhaps it gets worse, as your stomach starts feeling even tighter and starts to hurt.
This tight sensation makes you feel heavy and full. Sometimes you might skip a meal because you feel so full and by skipping a meal can cause a hunger headache and dehydration.
This can cause severe stomach pain. Constipation can cause intestinal blockages at any point in the colon.
These can block the intestinal track from passing waste material, fluids or gas along the digestion pathway, producing sharp stomach pains.
Gas build up
This can be caused by constipation. Yeast in the colon ferments the stool, and a byproduct of fermentation is gas. When this gas cant be expelled, it produces pressure and pain.
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It Could Be Constipation
While youre spending a lot of time at home, you may not be moving as much as you usually do. You may also be eating different foods. This can lead to constipation. You may be constipated if you experience:
- Fewer bowel movements than normal for you
- Stool that is lumpy or looks like pebbles
- Difficulty passing stool or a feeling that you still need to go after youre finished
Fortunately, you can make a number of at-home changes to help relieve your constipation. These include:
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Related Conditions Of Abdominal Pain
Some of the most common conditions associated with abdominal pain include the following:
Irritable Bowel Syndrome This condition is characterized by symptoms like diarrhea, constipation, and bloating.
Constipation If you arent having regular bowel movements, you may feel bloated and full and experience sharp gas pains in your abdomen.
Peptic Ulcer When a sore develops in the lining of your stomach or upper small intestine, you may experience a burning sensation similar to hunger pangs, along with nausea, vomiting, or heartburn.
Pancreatitis Inflammation of your pancreas may cause sharp, severe pain in the upper middle area of your abdomen, along with nausea, vomiting, or fever. This condition can be either acute or chronic.
Sudden Stomach Cramps With Diarrhoea
If your stomach cramps have started recently and you also have diarrhoea, the cause may be a tummy bug . This means you have a viral or bacterial infection of the stomach and bowel, which should get better without treatment after a few days.
It can last for up to 14 days, and this would not require you to see your GP unless you have any of the following features:
- blood in the stool
- recent hospital treatment or antibiotic treatment
- persistent vomiting
- painless, watery, high-volume diarrhoea increased risk of dehydration
- night time symptoms disturbing your sleep
Gastroenteritis may be caused by coming into close contact with someone who’s infected, or by eating contaminated food .
Long-term or recurring abdominal pain
See your GP if you or your child have persistent or repeated abdominal pain. The cause is often not serious and can be managed.
Possible causes in adults include:
Possible causes in children include:
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Ways To Reduce Or Control Your Symptoms
Gastroparesis problem is an incurable one. However, dietary changes may help you to reduce your symptoms or let it go away and control your health condition. These measures are-
- Dietary Changes Tips
- If you are a Gastroparesis patient, you should opt to try six small meals in a day instead of three big meals. When there would be relatively less amount of food remains in your stomach, your digestive system may pass it easily and controls your system.
- Secondly, you should make your habit to have well-cooked i.e. soft and liquid food items, as your stomach may digest them in an easy way.
- Make sure chewing your food properly before you should swallow them.
- Gastroparesis patients should strictly have any type of non-carbonated liquid with each of the meals they intake.
- Finally, you should make your habit of sitting or walking for at least 2 hours following your meal instead of lying down directly.
When To Seek Immediate Medical Attention
Get medical help immediately if:
- You have abdominal pain that is very sharp, severe, and sudden.
- You also have pain in the chest, neck, or shoulder.
- Youre vomiting blood, have bloody diarrhea, or have black, tarry stools
- You have a high fever.
- Youre having difficulty breathing.
- You develop consistent nausea and/or vomiting.
- Your abdomen is stiff, hard, and tender to the touch.
- You cant move your bowels, especially if youre also vomiting
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Home Remedies For Stomach Pain
Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.
Stabbing, throbbing, pulsing, or burning abdominal pains may be the sign of either minor or serious health conditions.
In most cases, relief can be found with all-natural home remedies for stomach pain.
The powerful yet nontoxic properties of many common kitchen products may help to alleviate the pain and other symptoms caused by gas, constipation, irritating foods, indigestion, food allergies, or viral infections.
Identifying the cause is the first step in knowing how to get relief from stomach pain.
In this article:
When Should I See My Doctor
In some cases, you should seek urgent medical attention or consult a doctor if you have abdominal pain.
If you have a sudden, severe, incapacitating pain in your abdomen, go immediately to your nearest emergency department or call triple zero and ask for an ambulance.
You should also seek urgent medical attention if you have pain that:
- is severe and/or getting worse
- has lasted for several hours or more
- wakes you from sleep
- is spreading to your neck, chest or shoulders
- makes it difficult to swallow
Urgent medical attention is also required if you have abdominal pain accompanied by
- unexplained weight loss
- skin that appears yellow
If you are experiencing pain high up in your abdomen that is made worse by exercise it could be angina or a heart attack. If you, or someone near you is experiencing symptoms of a heart attack, call triple zero immediately and ask for an ambulance.
If you are pregnant and experiencing abdominal pain, check with your doctor or midwife. Abdominal pains are common in pregnancy, but should always be checked out.
If your abdominal pain does not match the situations above, but it is recurrent or persistent , or it started mild but is worsening, you should still consult a doctor.
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