When To Worry About Your Childs Stomach Pain
Appendicitis is a serious medical emergency that can cause sudden, severe pain in the lower right part of your childs stomach. If your child complains of stomach pain that moves to the lower right side of the belly, watch for other symptoms of appendicitis including: Fever. Nausea. Vomiting.
Why Does Stress Cause Stomach Pain Or Gi Discomfort
We know through research there is a strong connection between our brain and our gut through the central nervous system. The enteric nervous system an out-branching of the central nervous system serves the GI tract, making a direct connection between our brain and gastrointestinal system. That connection can cause normal physiologic processes to be interpreted as painful under stressful or anxiety-provoking situations.
When were stressed, hormones and neurotransmitters are released in the body. This can negatively impact gut motility, or the way our intestines and stomach squeeze and move waste through the body. Also, stress can affect the delicate balance of bacteria in our gut, causing GI discomfort.
People experiencing chronic stress may also eat more or eat unhealthy foods with a higher amount of natural and artificial sugar that is poorly digested and causes GI distress. People may also smoke and drink more alcohol or caffeine than normal which can cause symptoms.
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
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How Do You Get Rid Of A Stomach Ache In 5 Minutes
Applying a heating pad, hot water bottle, hot towel, or heat wrap over the abdomen and back helps relax the muscles in the abdomen and relieve abdominal cramps and pain. The temperature should ideally be 104° Fahrenheit. Taking a hot bath with bubbles and essential oils or hot showers can also help.
General Abdominal Pain With Bloating
Possible explanation: irritable bowel syndrome
What is it: As a syndrome, IBS refers to a group of symptoms that have been identified in addition to abdominal pain and bloating, many people also experience changes in bowel habits like constipation and diarrhea. It is not well known what causes IBS, but it may be related to genetics, food sensitivity, stress, or an infection.
Treatment: There is no cure for IBS at this time, so treatment revolves around managing whatever symptoms are present. Medications to treat diarrhea and constipation can be supplemented by some changes to diet one highly recommended regimen is a low-FODMAP diet, which refers to foods that contain certain fermentable components.
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Are There Foods That Reduce Stomach Pain
Anxiety-related stomach pain is not usually the result of your diet , so there arent necessarily any dietary changes that can help reduce stomach pain.
That said, those with panic attacks are more prone to experiencing more severe stomach discomfort, even when no anxiety is present. In other words, when you have panic attacks, its possible to have stomach pain even without a panic attack.
Also, those with anxiety attacks and severe anxiety are prone to whats known as over-sensitization. That means that they are more likely to notice and feel smaller, normal changes in the body, and these can trigger an anxiety attack. So if your diet does contain foods that cause you gas, stomach discomfort, or mild indigestion, it may be best to avoid them because the slight amount of discomfort could feel worse than it should and may trigger a panic attack.
Thats why healthy eating is important in those that get stomach pain with anxiety. Make sure youre getting:
- Whole-Grain Carbohydrates
Also, if you suffer from stress-induced hyperacidity, then it is recommended that you consume dairy products and non-spicy foods. In moderate amounts, over-the-counter antacids may be needed as well.
In addition, if possible, try to avoid eating until youre too full. Those with severe anxiety sometimes interpret the full feeling as pain, and this could trigger a panic attack and further pain.
Symptoms Of Abdominal Pain In Adults
The type of pain can vary greatly. When abdominal pain occurs, it can:
- be sharp, dull, stabbing, cramp-like, twisting or fit many other descriptions
- be brief, come and go in waves, or it can be constant
- make you throw up
- make you want to stay still or make you so restless that you pace around trying to find just the right position
- vary from a minor problem to one needing urgent surgery.
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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.
How Is Abdominal Pain Treated
The treatment of abdominal pain will depend on its underlying cause.
Mild abdominal pain may go away on its own within hours or days. Mild pain and related symptoms can also often be treated with medicines from the pharmacy. Your pharmacist will be able to advise you on what type of product is best suited to your situation.
You should not use aspirin or anti-inflammatory medicines, such as ibuprofen, to treat abdominal pain, other than period pain. These medicines may cause or irritate a stomach or bowel problem.
If you are treating mild abdominal pain with a known cause at home:
- use a hot water bottle or warm wheat pack on your abdomen
- eat bland foods when you can start eating again, or as advised by your doctor
Specific treatments, depending on the cause of your abdominal pain, include the following:
Gas Medicines designed to break down gas bubbles, such as antacids containing simethicone, are available over the counter. Gas-reducing medicines such as charcoal products, may help with ongoing wind problems. Dietary changes may also help. An Accredited Practising Dietitian or your doctor can help with dietary advice.
Gastroenteritis This usually only lasts a few days and clears up by itself. Rehydrating by drinking plenty of clear fluids is the most important treatment.
Pain due to muscle spasms Spasms in the wall of the bowel may be eased by antispasmodic medicines. Several are available, so talk to your pharmacist or doctor about which are right for you.
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Why Does Belly Pain Happen
Pain is the body’s way of telling us that something’s going on. Belly pain alerts us to something that’s happening inside us that we might not know about otherwise.
Some reasons for belly pain are easy to spot, like when someone gets hit in the gut or eats spoiled macaroni salad. Oher times, it might be hard to figure out.
When you get a pain in your stomach, it might be an actual problem right in your stomach, but not necessarily. Your abdomen is more than your stomach. It’s more than your intestines. It’s the whole area between your chest and your pelvic bones. With so many organs in the abdomen, different problems can have similar symptoms.
Can Stomachaches Be Prevented
Not all belly pain can be prevented. But to help avoid common types of stomachaches:
- Wash your hands before eating or preparing food, and after using the bathroom.
- Don’t overeat, and try not to eat right before going to sleep.
- Drink plenty of water and eat fiber-rich foods, such as fruits and vegetables, to keep food moving through your digestive system.
- Avoid foods that have passed their expiration date or or weren’t stored properly.
- If you have a food allergy or intolerance, avoid eating foods that make you sick. If you have a food allergy, always carry two epinephrine auto-injectors, and know when you should use them.
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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
Causes Of Abdominal Pain In Adults
There are many reasons why you may have pain in your abdomen. People often worry about appendicitis, gallstones, ulcers, infections and pregnancy problems. Doctors also worry about these, as well as many other conditions. Abdominal pain may not come from the abdomen. Some surprising causes include heart attacks and pneumonias, conditions in the pelvis or groin, some skin rashes like shingles, and problems with stomach muscles like a strain. The pain may occur along with problems in passing urine or with bowel motions, or period problems.With so many organs and structures in the abdomen, it can be hard for a doctor to be absolutely sure about the cause of your problem. The doctor will ask you several questions and then examine you carefully. The doctor may perform no further tests. The cause of your pain may be quite clearly not serious. Another scenario may be that the doctor is unable to find a cause, but the pain gets better within hours or days. All the doctor can do is to be sure that the pain does not require surgery or admission to hospital.
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How To Relieve Stomach Pain Symptoms
There isnt necessarily a cure for the stomach pain symptoms themselves. When your body is under stress, your stomach tends to hurt based on the acids in your stomach and the foods youve already eaten. If you have stomach pain as a result of an anxiety attack, you may need to wait it out.
Water can help a little, however. So consider sipping cool water. Antacids may also be beneficial in some cases, but if you have stomach pain often, you may not want to depend on antacid treatments.
Stomach pain from anxiety can be caused by several stress-related issues, including abdominal tension, digestion issues, and irritable bowel. Although the stomach pain may be caused by anxiety, the acids in the stomach are still very real. There are ways to treat both your stomach discomfort and anxiety.
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Can Diarrhoea Be Prevented
Gastroenteritis the most common cause of diarrhoea is highly infectious, and mostly spread by contact with another person who has the illness, or from contaminated food.
These measures can help to stop the spread:
- wash hands frequently using good handwashing technique
- follow good food safety practices
- if a household member has diarrhoea, they should not prepare food for the other members, and everyone should follow regular handwashing and hygiene practices
- anyone who has diarrhoea should not visit hospitals, aged care facilities, or swimming pools
- babies can be vaccinated against rotavirus
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Diagnosing Abdominal Pain And Diarrhea
To determine the cause of abdominal pain and diarrhea, a doctor will first perform a physical exam. Theyll also ask some questions about your health history and lifestyle.
Traveling to certain countries may increase your risk of digestive disease. Be sure to mention any recent trips overseas. The doctor will also ask questions about any recent changes in your diet.
A doctor may perform a stool culture, in which theyll send a sample of your feces to a lab to check for bacteria, viruses, and parasites. If this comes up negative, they may run a more complete analysis of your feces to look for possible digestive disorders.
Other common diagnostic tests include:
- Endoscopy. In an endoscopy, a doctor sends a camera down your throat and into your stomach to check for problems, such as ulcers and signs of celiac disease.
- Colonoscopy. A colonoscopy involves sending a camera into the rectum and intestines to check for signs of damage and signs of disease, such as ulcers and polyps.
- Lower GI tract radiography. In a lower GI tract radiography, also known as a barium enema, a technician will perform a real-time X-ray of the abdomen. This occurs after the doctor injects a barium-based contrast material into the rectum that can highlight intestinal obstructions and other conditions.
Medication can help treat the underlying condition causing your abdominal pain and diarrhea. If your symptoms are caused by stress or need to be managed, home remedies can help.
Signs And Symptoms Of Abdominal Pain
Abdominal pain may take several different forms. In addition to how severe it is, abdominal pain can be described in the following ways:
Generalized Pain This refers to pain felt in more than half of your abdominal area, and is typical of stomach viruses, indigestion, or gas as the cause of your pain.
Cramping This type of pain come and goes, or changes in its severity or perceived position in your abdomen. Cramping is rarely serious and is typical of gas, passing a stool, or menstruation as the cause of your pain.
Its important to call your doctor if your abdominal pain is so severe that you cant move without feeling more pain, or sit still in a comfortable position.
- Nausea and vomiting that doesnt resolve
- Weight loss
- Abdomen very tender to touch
- Swollen abdomen
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Remedies And Treatments For Upset Stomach And Diarrhea
Upset Stomach Remedies
Most stomach ailments can be treated at home. As soon as you start feeling sick, begin limiting your diet to clear liquids in frequent, small amounts. Make sure to drink enough fluids to keep your urine clear or a pale yellow.
If youâre not able to keep liquids down and begin to vomit, start with sips of water or sucking on ice chips. Once you are able to keep that down, try other fluids like:
- Clear soup broth or bouillon
- Clear soft-drinks like 7-Up, Sprite, or Ginger Ale
- Juices like apple, grape, cherry, or cranberry
Once you are able to keep all liquids down, try some solid foods along with the liquids. Good foods to try are:
- White rice
- White toast
It may take several days to one week to regain your appetite, energy level, and for your bowels to regain normalcy.
Diarrhea TreatmentsMost cases of diarrhea clear on their own within a couple of days without treatment. If youve tried lifestyle changes and home remedies for an upset stomach and diarrhea without success, your doctor might recommend the following:
Antibiotics might help treat diarrhea caused by bacteria or parasites. If a virus is causing your diarrhea, antibiotics wont help. Alternatively, if your doctor determines that antibiotics are whatâs causing your diarrhea, they will likely lower the dose or switch to another medication.
Treatment to Replace Fluids
Upset Stomach and Diarrhea Prevention
Should I See A Doctor If I Get Stomach Pains When I Am Stressed
You should be seeing your primary care physician at least once a year, and you should tell them if you often have stomach pain or GI discomfort.
If your primary care physician identifies symptoms of a chronic GI condition or other warning signs, they may refer you to a gastroenterologist like myself. A gastroenterologist can help determine if your stomach pain or GI symptoms are related to stress, or due to another condition that requires different treatment.
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Apply Peppermint Essential Oil To The Abdomen
Like the benefits that ginger and apple cider vinegar offer, peppermint essential oil acts in a similar way. If you dont have ginger or ACV on hand when a stomachache hits but peppermint oil in your cabinets, this can be a great way to help relive the pain.
Peppermint offers a number of digestive health benefits, most notably it can help to reduce muscle spasms in the gastric lining and colon.
Mix a few drops of peppermint essential oil with a carrier oil like fractionated coconut oil and rub across your abdomen wherever discomfort is occurring.
If you dont have peppermint oil but you have peppermint tea, this can be equally beneficial and soothing to drink.
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How To Stop Stomach Pain During Periods Treatment And Lifestyle Changes
Around 80% of women have experienced stomach pain during periods, also known as menstrual cramps at some point in their life. Usually, menstrual cramp pain is mild. But sometimes it can be severe. The pains can vary from sharp stabs that make you double over to a nagging pain that spreads through the lower abdomen and lower back. Some women also experience dizziness, nausea, diarrhea or vomiting.