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What Causes Your Stomach To Be Hard

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Stomach Bloating: causes, symptoms and cures

The UPMC Heart and Vascular Institute has long been a leader in cardiovascular care, with a rich history in clinical research and innovation. As one of the first heart transplant centers in the country and as the developer of one of the first heart-assist devices, UPMC has contributed to advancing the field of cardiovascular medicine. We strive to provide the most advanced, cutting-edge care for our patients, treating both common and complex conditions. We also offer services that seek to improve the health of our communities, including heart screenings, free clinics, and heart health education. Find an expert near you.


Right Side Of The Abdomen

Upper right:

The upper right side of your abdomen contains the gallbladder, liver, and first part of the small intestine.

The gallbladder is a small sac that stores bile made by the liver. The duodenum, known as the first portion of the small intestine, is where food empties from the stomach into the small intestine.

Center right:

The center right side of the abdomen contains the ascending colon and the transverse colon. Food then passes from the ascending colon to the transverse colon.

Lower right:

The cecum of the large intestine with the appendix and the small intestine are in the lower right side of the abdomen. The cecum is the first part of the large intestine that the end of the small intestine connects to.

Some experts believe the appendix plays a role in the immune system. Others think it has no purpose.

If your doctor performs a physical exam and then suspects a medical condition is causing your abdominal bloating or pain, theyll run various medical tests.

The types of tests they order will depend on your medical history and physical exam results.

Some common tests for abdominal problems include the following:

Why A Rock Hard Stomach May Be Unhealthy

by CareWell Urgent Care | Aug 20, 2018 | Other Ailments, Uncategorized |

Building up an impressive, chiseled set of abs is top fitness goal for many men. However, if you experience a feeling of tightness in a your stomach, it may not be the result of healthy intentions. A rock hard stomach may be the result of digestive or hormonal issues, and there are several symptoms to be aware of if youre questioning the tightness in your abdominals. So what causes a hard stomach, and how can you fix it?

What is a tight stomach?

A tight stomach can feel different for everyone. Most commonly, it may feel as if the muscles are contracting and creating pressure in the stomach. The tightness is often a temporary, however, it can also be a symptom of an underlying condition.


Though a tight stomach can be caused by chronic stress, it is more likely to be triggered by physical symptoms. Those symptoms include:

  • Indigestion

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Chronic Gastritis And Peptic Ulcer Disease

Chronic gastritis occurs when your stomach lining becomes irritated or inflamed over time. Severe inflammation can destroy the lining and formation of the stomach or duodenal ulcer .

Chronic gastritis and peptic ulcer disease are classically present with burning or gnawing pain in the upper stomach .

However, many peptic ulcer diseases dont have epigastric pain instead, they are mild symptoms such as indigestion or discomfort .

Chronic gastritis and peptic ulcer disease are commonly due to:

  • Infection .
  • Irritation by certain foods or medication .

Gastritis often causes frank pain in the upper stomach area rather than a sense of hard stomach.

Common Symptoms of gastritis and PUD:

  • Upper central stomach pain sometimes feels like a hard stomach in the upper-middle abdomen.
  • The pain is usually dull, vague, burning, or aching pain.
  • Associated symptoms include:
  • If bleeding ulcers, vomiting of blood , or passage of black stool can occur.

What Causes Abdominal Swelling

12 Tips to Avoid a Bloated Stomach and Gas

Your abdomen could be swollen for different reasons. These range from eating too much to pregnancy. Only your doctor will be able to determine the exact cause of your swollen abdomen.

A common cause of abdominal swelling is gas. Swallowing air as part of a nervous habit or from eating foods that are high in fiber can lead to gas production. If you dont release this gas, it can lead to abdominal swelling.

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How Can I Tell If My Cat Has A Tumor In His Stomach

When the cat has abdominal distension due to tumors, the belly area either enlarges or becomes loose and flabby. The tumor is a rigid mass which means the cats stomach feels hard. We might also see other symptoms such as: Only the vet can give an accurate diagnosis, especially because many of these symptoms also present with various diseases.

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Youre Not Maintaining A Healthy Diet

In a paper published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers found evidence that people who ate more refined grainsa category that includes white bread, white rice, muffins, bagels, pancakes and the likehad more visceral fat. In contrast, people who ate whole grainsbrown rice, oatmeal, popcorn, and grains like kasha and bulgurhad less visceral fat. Check out this list of whole grains you should be adding to your diet .

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When To Talk To Your Health Care Provider

Bloating can be normal, but it can also be a sign of serious conditions. Its important to keep track of what foods cause you to feel bloated, but also note if you experience other symptoms that have accompanied bloating.

If you notice a drastic change in weight or changes in your bowel movementssuch as changes in color or consistencyyou need to tell your provider that as well, as they can be signs of an underlying condition, Hoffman said. If you ate too much and are having trouble digesting your food, then you know that was the likely cause of your bloating and cramping, but if its come on suddenly with a healthy diet, you should err on the side of caution and visit your provider.

This Is Why Your Stomach Feels Hard When You Press On It

How to fix a Bloated Stomach naturally in 4 minutes

There’s bloating and then there’s, well, âbloatingâ. We’re talking about when your stomach bloats outward â or distends â and becomes hard to press on. It can feel like you’re carrying around a bowling ball in your belly.

Video of the Day

So what exactly is going on here? First, your stomach feeling hard when you press on it is what doctors call a non-specific finding, Shabnam Sarker, MD, assistant professor of medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee, tells This means that a hard stomach doesn’t point to one condition, and there are generally quite a few possible causes.

“This could be from distension from air, such as bloating that happens when you swallow extra air or consume food products that create a lot of gas,” she says. Other times, it may be indicative of a more serious condition, such as a bowel blockage or inflammatory bowel disease .

For your day-to-day comfort and general health overall, a hard, bloated belly isn’t something you should ignore. Here’s what it could mean, and how to get the help you need:

Related Reading

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How Is Abdominal Rigidity Diagnosed

If you have involuntary abdominal rigidity, you should see a doctor right away to rule out serious problem.

Something as minor as a stomach virus could cause guarding. You wont know until your doctor gives you a proper diagnosis.

Dont attempt to take medication to dull the pain before seeing your doctor. It will alter the pain pattern and make it more difficult for your doctor to diagnose your condition.

When you talk to your doctor, its helpful to be aware of the following:

  • when the symptoms started
  • the qualities of the pain, or whether its dull, sharp, occurring off and on, or travels to another area
  • how long the pain lasts
  • what you were doing when the rigidity/pain began
  • what makes symptoms better or worse

Your doctor will also want to know any other symptoms you have and when you last ate, in case you need surgery.

Knowing these factors will help your doctor make a diagnosis.

The first step in finding the cause of abdominal rigidity is to discuss your medical history. A physical exam will usually reveal the cause. Your doctor may also order blood tests, including:

When Should I Be Worried About Abdominal Bloating

See your healthcare provider if your bloated stomach:

  • Gets progressively worse.
  • Persists for more than a week.
  • Is persistently painful.
  • Comes with symptoms of illness, such as fever, vomiting or bleeding.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

A bloated stomach is not a pleasant feeling. While its a common experience and usually temporary, you may become weary of the cycle. Spending a little focused attention on the problem to identify the cause can be well worthwhile. Try recording your symptoms and possible triggers in a journal. Note diet, hormonal and stress factors. When in doubt bring your notes to a specialist for professional guidance. The different factors that contribute to bloating can be complex and difficult to parse, but medical testing can help. As always, seek medical attention if your symptoms are persistent or severe.

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Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease And Acid Reflux

Gastroesophageal reflux disease is known more commonly as acid reflux. It occurs when contents from the stomach are pushed into the esophagus, causing a burning sensation. One of the most common effects of GERD is abdominal bloating. Other symptoms include a dry cough, heartburn, hiccups, nausea, and sore throat.

Why Does My Left Side Feel Bloated After Eating

12 Sources Of Stomach Pain That May Explain Why You

Bloating occurs in the abdominal area. It happens when large amounts of air or gas build up in the gastrointestinal tract. Eating is a common cause of bloating because when the body digests food, it produces gas. People also swallow air when eating or drinking, which then enters the gastrointestinal tract.

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What Can Cause You To Feel Bloated All The Time

Standing or sitting for hours at a timecan make our stomach feelbloatedall the time,and this can causefluid to accumulate in the area. Fluid retention goes hand in hand with a sedentary lifestyle,poor circulation,and excess sodium and sugar. It can also occur as a result of a lack of exercise or not drinking enough water.

Beware Of Hidden Dairy In Packaged Foods

Lactose can hide in foods such as butter, baked goods, cereals, and processed foods that are battered, like chicken wings and chicken fingers.

You can also take lactase tablets before you eat or drink milk products or add lactase drops to milk before you drink it. The lactase breaks down the lactose in foods and drinks, reducing your chances of having lactose intolerance symptoms. However, young children and pregnant people may not be able to use lactase products. Check with your doctor before trying them.

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What Causes Bloating In The Stomach


Gas is a natural byproduct of digestion, but too much intestinal gas means your digestion is gone awry. While you can ingest gasses by swallowing air or drinking carbonated beverages, these gasses mostly escape through belching before they reach your intestines. Gasses in your intestines are mostly produced by gut bacteria digesting carbohydrates .

If theres too much fermentation going on, its because too many carbohydrates werent naturally absorbed earlier in the digestive process, before reaching those gut bacteria. That could be for several reasons. Maybe you just ate too much too fast for proper digestion, or you might have a specific food intolerance or gastrointestinal disease. Some possible causes include:

Digestive Contents

These can include solids, liquids, and gas. Digestive contents can build up in your digestive system when there is a backup or restriction in your digestive tract or when the muscles that move digestive contents along are somehow impaired. Any build-up of digestive contents along the digestive tract will leave less room for normal amounts of gas to process through. It also leaves less room for other things in your abdomen, including circulatory fluids and fat, making everything feel tighter. Causes of build-up can include:


Why Does It Feel Like Something Is Moving In My Stomach And Im Not Pregnant

Your breathing problems may actually be caused by your stomach, not asthma

Its possible to have sensations that feel like a baby kicking when you arent pregnant. Several normal movements in a womans body can mimic a babys kicks. This includes gas, muscle contractions, and peristalsisthe wave-like motions of intestinal digestion. Women often refer to the sensation as phantom kicks.

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Symptoms Of Hard Stomach

Abdominal bloating and stomach distention are related conditions. According to the journal ISRN Obstetrics and Gynecology, a distended stomach is usually accompanied by more symptoms than just bloating.1

For example, a hard stomach may also be associated with mild to severe abdominal pain and excess gas. If you have excess gas with bloating you may find that you have to belch or pass gas to get relief from bloating. Because indigestion can sometimes cause a swollen belly, you may get cramping pains in your abdomen or a burning sensation in your chest .

Dr. Melissa Conrad Stöppler on MedicineNet says that along with abdominal pain, a rigid stomach can cause nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.2

Can You Get A Hernia Above Your Belly Button

An epigastric hernia is a type of hernia in the epigastric region of the abdominal wall. Its above the belly button and just below the sternum of your rib cage. This type of hernia is a somewhat common condition in both adults and children. About 2 to 3 percent of all abdominal hernias are epigastric hernias.

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Hard Stomach During Pregnancy

Generally, you expect a hard stomach when youre pregnant. Your hard-feeling stomach is caused by the pressure of your uterus growing and putting pressure on your abdomen.

The hardness of your stomach while pregnant can be more pronounced if you eat a low-fiber diet or drink a lot of carbonated beverages.

If your experience severe pain along with your hard stomach, you should see your OB-GYN or seek immediate medical attention. Sometimes severe pain in the first 20 weeks of pregnancy is an indicator of miscarriage.

Although more common in the third trimester, in the second or third trimester of pregnancy, discomfort can come from labor contractions or Braxton-Hicks contractions. Typically Braxton-Hicks contractions pass. If the contractions dont pass and become more persistent, it might be a sign that youre going into labor.

A Excess Eating Of Gas

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Eating too many foods that are known to cause excess gas can make you bloated.

Gas-producing foods can lead to a hard stomach feeling due to excess gas inside your stomach.

Eating excess amounts of such food can cause bloating even in a healthy individual without any disease. In addition, the more you eat, the harder your stomach gets.

The list of food that commonly causes gas and bloating include :

1. Milk and dairy products milk,

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Common Causes Of A Hard And Swollen Stomach

Do you not feel that sometimes your stomach looks bigger than the usual days? And it is not because you are overweight but for some other reason. We might have an answer for you, it is in the causes of a hard and swollen stomach. We have too many, which include our eating and also our lifestyle.

What Causes Abdominal Bloating

  • Ascites: Sometimes you may feel bloated due to the accumulation of fluid within the abdominal cavity, called ascites. This is often the result of liver disease.
  • Tumours: Very occasionally, you may feel bloated because there is a tumour present within your abdomen, of the ovaries, liver, stomach or elsewhere. The present of a lump or swelling should alert you to the possibility of a tumour or cancer.
  • Infection: Certain parasitic disorders can cause abnormal dilatations of the colon associated with symptoms of bloating.

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Stomach Bloating Can Be A Sign Of An Enlarged Liver Know The Reason And Diagnosis

An enlarged liver or a liver inflammation is a serious health condition. Leaving it, untreated can cause severe distress to the body. If diagnosed on time, its treatment is possible.

Other Diseases

If your doctor tells you that you need to keep a check on your drinking or eating habits, that means you need to be careful about your liver health. Liver enlargement or inflammation in the liver is a grave health condition, which can even lead to deaths in the worst cases. Hepatitis is usually another reason behind this, although this condition can be treated, but only if the diagnosis is done on time. Liver problems mainly crop up due to several lifestyle-related factors including excessive drinking, lack of exercise and a disturbed diet pattern.

This medical condition should be treated on priority as the liver helps in the regulation of food in the body. It also cleanses your blood by getting rid of harmful chemicals produced in your body. It makes a liquid called bile, which helps you break down fat from food. Also, it stores glucose in the body, which is a sort of fuel for the body to function. In cases of late treatment, there can be chances of liver transplants, which involves a longer recovery process. Liver transplant cases can be every bit harrowing for the individual to follow a set pattern of lifestyle to reduce the risk of re-damaging the new liver.

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