Tuesday, November 28, 2023

How To Stop Stomach Pain From Anxiety

Drink Prune Juice To Relieve Stomach Pain

How to manage anxiety related stomach pain? – Dr. Sanjay Gupta

Stomach pain from constipation tends to radiate from the lower part of your abdomen and sometimes features a periodic shifting or gurgling feeling accompanied by a temporary spike in pain.

When constipation is your cause, consider a glass of prune juice or another type of laxative. If effective, you can expect to experience sudden relief.

How To Stop Anxiety From Causing Further Back Pain

Under the assumption that your back pain is caused by anxiety, treating that back pain does require a focus on the pain itself. Unfortunately, while treating anxiety can reduce your back pain in the long term , breaking the cycle of back pain depends in large part on your ability to also fight the back pain itself. Consider the following tips:

These are all traditional ways to deal with back pain unrelated to anxiety, but they’re still effective because once back pain starts, it needs to be stopped using traditional methods.

But of course, controlling your back pain is only step one. You will still need to learn ways to cope with anxiety so that you can stop your anxiety back pain from occurring again.


Anxiety causes muscle tension, inactivity, changes in posture, and other changes that can all lead to back pain. The pain is real, so over the counter painkillers, stretching, and similar treatments might be needed to eliminate the pain. In the long term, it becomes important to stop the anxiety.

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Types Of Stomach Problems From Anxiety

What’s interesting about anxiety stomach problems is that they may occur at different times for different people. Some people get stomach problems only during severe anxiety attacks. Others get these problems all throughout the day but know that they suffer from intense anxiety.

The following represent the most common types of “stomach problems” from anxiety. Remember, people often use the word stomach to also include bowels, colloquially.

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Is Anxiety Making You Poop Heres How To Soothe Your Stomach

Do you ever get the feeling of suddenly needing to go to the bathroom when you hear bad news? Or maybe before an exam or a big presentation at work?

If the answer is yes, you might be experiencing anxiety poop. Anxiety poop affects more of us than you might think.

Anxiety-producing events can trigger digestive issues, including diarrhea, constipation and nausea. This is because your gut and your brain are linked. Anxiety poop is your bodys reaction to extreme stress.

Here are the steps you can take to soothe your stomach and get your anxiety poop under control.

Research indicates that high stress situations can upset the digestive system, triggering diarrhea, constipation, and abdominal pain.

Triggers vary from person to person, but the bodys response is linked to the gut-brain axis.

Maya Eid is a clinical and holistic nutritionist who knows a thing or two about poop.

Stress and anxiety increase hormones, such as cortisol, adrenaline, and serotonin, Eid says.

The gut responds to these hormones by producing physical symptoms, like watery stools, nausea, or constipation.

Serotonin is especially important when were talking about anxiety poop.

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter and a hormone involved in the peristaltic reflex , Eid says. During heightened anxiety, the amount of serotonin increases in your gut and can cause spasms to happen throughout your entire colon.

These spasms are enough to produce unexpected bowel movements.

Using Apple Cider Vinegar As A Stomachache Cure

anxiety stomach pain

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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If You Do Just One Thing With Breathing: Slow Down Your Exhalations

It doesnt have to be an exercise: just pausing for an extra beat or two at the end of a handful of breaths is a good start. Literally just hold your breath for a count of 1 or 2 at the end of breaths that are completely normal otherwise.

Breathing regularity and overall slowness is a good start, but extending exhalation is even better for a specific biological reason: exhalation is literally more relaxing than inhalation. That is how we are wired.

Whenever you inhale, you turn on the sympathetic nervous system slightly, minutely speeding up your heart. And when you exhale, the parasympathetic half turns on, activating your vagus nerve in order to slow things down .

Robert M Sapolsky, Why Zebras Dont Get Ulcers, 2004, p. 48.

You could make a simple change to the box breathing method described above: instead of holding after inhalation, you can distribute the breaths around the sides of the box like this: breathe in, breathe out, breathe out, hold it out.

Get A Pet Probably A Dog They Are People Too And Those Relationships Are Never Toxic

And if you cant care for a dog yourself, seek out a therapy dog, formally or informally. Its hard to overstate the therapeutic value of pets, and dogs in particular they arent called our best friends for nothing. Dont get me wrong: I am both a cat person and a dog person, and have always had trouble relating to being limited to one or the other. I was blessed with a particularly mellow cat that came with my wife, and I miss her terribly. But even as a cat lover, I have to concede that dogs, on average, are probably the better bet for battling anxiety. They are just so freakishly positive. It is infectious. Its like being around someone who is always laughing.

I have little to add, because the basics are obvious and the details have already been particularly exhaustively explored by others: How Dogs Can Help with Mental Health. Thats a deep dive into the power of human-canine relationships there.

This is Snug. Shes the lab I grew up with & she was fantastic.

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What Causes Anxiety Related Upset Stomach

Scientists have many different theories about why anxiety causes an upset stomach. One of the key beliefs is that anxiety causes changes in neurotransmitter function, particularly serotonin. There are serotonin receptors in the gut, and so when your body is experiencing anxiety, it’s likely receiving chemicals that tell it to respond with that upset feeling.

Other causes include:

  • Adrenaline Body Changes Adrenaline works with cortisol, the stress hormone, to allow the body to respond to danger quickly. These hormones may change the general physiological traits of the gut. Further, the ratio of good versus bad bacteria in the GI system may be altered by these hormones.
  • Slowed Digestion Anxiety activates the fight or flight system. Studies have shown that the speed of digestion decreases as a result of the fight or flight system, and this may cause discomfort in the stomach and intestines as a result.
  • Stomach Tension Anxiety also puts a great deal of pressure on the stomach muscles, and these, in turn, put pressure on the stomach. Any stomach pressure has the potential to change the way that your stomach feels during periods of stress.

All of these are potential issues that lead to problems with your stomach during periods of stress.

The Behavioural Signature Of Anxiety

How to Stop an Anxious Stomach

When people dismiss anxiety as a factor in their health, its often because they dont think of themselves as a nervous person. But that doesnt rule out anxiety: we can be anxious without being prone to anxiety. Anxiety can be a recent and sometimes surprisingly subtle development in life, at odds with a much older self-image.

Because of the stigma against anxiety, most of us try to hide it. Everyones strategies are different, but its common to just get less expressive and stiff in general, a physical stoicism. The British stiff upper lip is a common strategy for concealing anxiety . But it wont fool anyone experienced.

Psychosomatic disorders are physical symptoms that mask emotional distress. The very nature of the physical presentation of the symptoms hides the distress at its root, so it is natural that those affected will automatically seek a medical disease to explain their suffering.

It’s All in Your Head, by Suzanne OSullivan, 8

And we use muscular tension, stillness, and a lack of breath like a rabbit freezing to hide from a predator to try to manage the churning and sinking sensations in the belly that come with worry, to hide them from ourselves and our friends and family. Of course not everyone shows anxiety this way, but its extremely common.

Also Check: How To Help Toddler With Upset Stomach

Find What Relaxes You

There are already things in your life that relax you. You may find it beneficial to make a list of things you enjoy and that help you to relax so you can reference it when symptoms of anxiety arise. When you notice your anxiety rising turn to those activities to help stop symptoms before they escalate.

For example, if you find that a warm bath is relaxing, don’t wait, draw a bath, maybe light some candles or add a few nice scents and get in. Whether it’s a bath, a shower, skipping stones at a park, getting a massage – if it works, do it right away, rather than allowing yourself to become overwhelmed by your anxiety.

Working With The School

The school plays an important role when kids develop physical symptoms of anxiety. Clinicians work with the school nurse and sometimes the psychologist or school counselor to set up a protocol for keeping the childs absences from class as short as possible. For instance, the recommended amount of time to wait before encouraging the child to go back to class might be as short as five minutes.

As much as we can, we urge them not to contact the parent or send the child home if theyre saying that theyre nauseous, adds Dr. Domingues, if we know that they are feeling this way because theyre anxious. The shorter the break can be, the better it is, because the longer theyre out of the thing thats making them feel anxious, she says, the harder it will be to get them back in.

This sort of symptoms can appear in a wide-range of children, but theyre most common in the grade-school years, notes Ms. Greenspan. As kids get older and transition into adolescence and adulthood, they are more likely to manifest their anxiety symptoms in other ways.

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Difficulty Separating From Parent

In some families, the child and one parent have developed a pattern of morning interaction that escalates distress for both of them. For example, the child may cry and cling to the parent and the parent, in turn, may be overcome with concern for the child, causing the child to become even more distressed and unsure about his/her ability to attend school. If the child has particular difficulty separating from one parent in the morning, involve the other parent in taking the child to school. The parent who previously has been less involved in the morning distress may be more matter-of-fact at the time of separation, implicitly communicating greater confidence in the childs ability to cope at school.

The Biological Signature Of Anxiety

How to Treat a Stomach Ache

If you couldnt ask someone about their thoughts, how can you tell if they are anxious? As heady as it is, anxiety isalso quite physical. It has some distinctive tells.

Its easy enough to detect with a blood test. All chronically stressed mammals have too many glucocorticoids stress hormones floating around. Of course, as already discussed, this probably has many adverse effects, and constitutes a medical hazard, including a risk of more pain.43

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Can Stress Cause An Upset Stomach

Have you ever felt butterflies in your stomach before giving a speech or right at the top of a roller coaster just before the plunge? Have you felt gutted after losing a big game, ending a relationship, or getting some bad news? Maybe youre going through a stressful time in your life and youve started experiencing stomach cramps or other digestive issues.

Stress can lead to an upset stomach as well as other digestive problems. While these symptoms arent uncommon, its important that you share this information with your doctor.

Understanding The Link Between Stress And Stomach Aches In Children

Abdominal pain and stress are related in many ways. Having abdominal pain can cause stress, especially when it leads to missed school or other activities. But more often, stress causes abdominal pain, or makes it worse. Do you ever have butterflies in your stomach when you are nervous? Did you ever feel sick to your stomach when you got some bad news? Children feel the same things, but often cant tell where those feelings come from. It took a long a time to understand why my stomach hurt every morning when I turned the corner to my middle school.

Scientists can explain why we have these feelings: the stomach and intestine have their own nervous system, called the enteric nervous system. These nerves respond to the same stress hormones and neurotransmitters that our brains do. We also know that stress and fatigue decrease pain thresholds. This means that a small change, like the passage of a gas bubble, can feel much worse when a person is stressed, tired, and run down. When a person is well-rested and feeling good, he or she might not even notice the gas bubble.

Stress-related eating can worsen pain, too. Which are the comfort foods your child prefers? Are they high in lactose or fructose, such as milk, apple juice, macaroni and cheese, or ice cream? Many people have a poor ability to digest lactose or fructose. Although these conditions are not dangerous, they can be very uncomfortable, causing pain, cramping, bloating, and even diarrhea.

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In General What Conditions Do Gastroenterologists Treat

Gastroenterologists can evaluate for and treat a wide variety of conditions, including inflammatory bowel disease , gastroesophageal reflux disease , celiac disease, peptic ulcer disease, obesity and more. GI doctors also routinely perform screenings for colon cancer.

My area of specialty is in prevention and early detection of cancers such as colorectal, gastric and pancreatic cancer. I enjoy helping patients, especially those with a family history, understand their risk for cancer while offering genetic testing, screening and more.

Overall, its important for patients to openly discuss stress and GI symptoms with their doctors. Primary care doctors can help manage stress and treat symptoms, but in some cases it may be necessary to see a gastroenterologist to evaluate for other conditions.

Drink Warm Lemon Water To Relieve Stomach Pain

Can anxiety cause stomach pain? – Ancient Lemon Balm Remedy

Since pregnant women should avoid fennel, they can try warm lemon water instead. The high acidity of the lemon will trigger extra production of your stomachs hydrochloric acid to further break down food and keep things moving smoothly.

  • Squeeze the juice from one-half of a lemon into one cup of warm water.
  • Mix well and drink while warm.

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Pain Episodes At School

Anticipation of a pain episode at school can produce anxiety in children that reaches the level of panic. Reduce anticipatory anxiety by working with the family and school to develop a plan for handling pain episodes at school. For example, the school might allow the child to go to the nurses or counselors office to rest until the pain subsides. After resting, the child should return to class. Avoid letting pain be a ticket to leave school early as this reinforces pain and undermines the childs learning to cope with pain. Instead, the child should leave school at the scheduled time with praise for successfully coping on his own. However, if signs of acute illness such as fever > 102°, vomiting, and diarrhea accompany the pain, the child should be allowed to return home.

The Enteric Nervous System

The enteric nervous system refers to the neurons controlling the digestive system. This âsecond brainâ is connected to the central nervous system â the brain and spinal cord. This system relies on neurotransmitters to communicate with the central nervous system and may affect mood.

After sensing food, the nerves of the enteric nervous system communicate with muscle cells to initiate contraction, moving food along the intestines.

In response to stress and in disorders such as IBS, the enteric nervous system may function abnormally. For instance, levels of neurotransmitters such as serotonin may be altered, or nerves may become hypersensitive. This may lead to gut symptoms such as abdominal pain, cramping, or constipation.

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Simple Strategies Can Reduce The Headaches Upset Stomach And Shortness Of Breath That May Be Triggered By Emotional Stress

You’ve had headaches on and off, or possibly nausea, or muscle pain. It could be emotions, rather than a physical illness, driving your symptoms.

Blame your autonomic nervous system. This is a system in your body that you don’t consciously control, but that regulates things like your heart rate, breathing, urination, and sexual function. It’s also the system that reacts when you are under a physical threat. The autonomic nervous system produces your fight-or-flight response, which is designed to help you defend yourself or run away from danger.

When you are under stress or anxious, this system kicks into action, and physical symptoms can appear headaches, nausea, shortness of breath, shakiness, or stomach pain. “Doctors see it all the time patients with real pain or other symptoms, but nothing is physically wrong with them,” says Dr. Arthur Barsky, professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.

In today’s world, with the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic toll, many people may be noticing new physical symptoms without realizing what’s causing them. “This is a terribly stressful time,” says Dr. Barsky. “There is stress about what our lives are like, the ominous threat of getting the virus and getting sick. It’s already clear that the pandemic is heightening anxiety and sense of stress.”

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