When To Call The Doctor About Abdominal Pain
If your abdominal pain is serious, doesn’t go away, or keeps coming back, talk to your doctor. Call 911 right away if your belly hurts because you had a recent injury there or if you have any chest pain.
You should also contact your doctor as soon as you can if you have symptoms along with the pain, such as:
- Can’t keep food down for more than 2 days
- Signs you’re getting dehydrated, including not urinating frequently, dark-colored urine, and being very thirsty
- Can’t have a bowel movement, especially if you’re also vomiting
- Pain when you pee, or you need to urinate often
Also call your doctor if:
- Your belly is tender to the touch
- Pain lasts more than a few hours
You may have other symptoms that could be a sign of a problem inside your body that needs treatment as soon as possible. Get medical care right away if you have abdominal pain and you also:
- Have unexplained weight loss
Discomfort After Food Symptoms: Causes Types Treatments And Home Remedies
Find a Doctor:
How Can I Feel Better
Most bellyaches don’t have a serious cause. They can happen for many different reasons, but most are easy to treat.
If stress or anxiety seem to be behind the pain, the doctor may recommend that you talk to a counselor or therapist. They help people figure out what’s behind their stress and give advice on how to fix problems or handle them better.
Read Also: Why Does The Lower Right Of My Stomach Hurt
Overeating And Your Digestion
The average stomach ordinarily holds about one or two cups of food. When we overeat, we may be consuming twice that or even more. To make room for that extra food, your stomach stretches like a balloon. If you overeat frequently, your stomach expands easily . Most people will feel discomfort as their stomach is stretched beyond its normal capacity.
Depending on what youve eaten, that feeling may stick around. Foods high in fat and fiber take longer to digest. So, if youve overeaten fried foods, expect stomach pain to linger.
As that food lingers in your belly, it can start to push up against your diaphragm, causing you to have shallow breaths. It can also cause digestive fluids to sneak back up into your esophagus. When that happens, you may experience heartburn, which has nothing to do with your heart, or a sour, acidic taste in your mouth.
Here are four guidelines to help avoid these symptoms.
Slow down. As you eat and your stomach stretches, hormones signal to your brain that youre full. If you eat too quickly, youll have overeaten by the time your body gets the fullness signal. Also, try to listen to your body when you get that full feeling.
Get moving. If youve overeaten, take a gentle walk to help stimulate the process in your body that pushes the food down your gastrointestinal tract. Dont run or overexert yourself, though. If you work too hard, blood will flow to your legs rather than your stomach, and digestion will slow down.
How Do You Relieve Abdominal Pain
Stomach pain has a wide variety of causes and treatments. Some conditions, such as gallstones or appendicitis, may require surgery. Others, such as ulcers or infections, may be eased with medicine. And sometimes you may just have to get through a bout of stomach flu or a kidney stone until it passes.
If you dont know whats causing your abdominal pain, its important to find out, especially if it doesnt go away on its own. Remember that even mild cases can be serious. However, if you have a pretty good idea that your stomachache is related to digestion, you can begin by treating yourself with:
- Bowel rest. Stop eating, or only eat easy-to-digest foods like crackers or bananas.
- Hydration. Drink plenty of water or a hydration formula.
- Heat therapy. Try a warm water bottle or a soak in the bath.
- Home remedies. Try licorice for gas, ginger for indigestion, or peppermint to help relax your intestinal muscles.
You May Like: How To Flush Your Stomach
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.
When To See A Healthcare Provider
Pain in the body means something is wrong. If you feel pain after eating every once in a while and it doesn’t keep you from functioning, you may want to mention it to your healthcare provider at your next visit.
But if you regularly have pain after eating, or your pain is significant, it’s vital that you make an appointment with your healthcare provider right away. A proper diagnosis is the first step toward a treatment plan.
Seek emergency care if you have severe pain along with any of these symptoms:
- Severe vomiting
Recommended Reading: How To Get Rid Of Constant Stomach Pain
What Is Discomfort After Food
How Do Doctors Find The Cause Of A Stomachache
To find the cause of a stomachache, doctors ask about:
- your symptoms
- illnesses you’ve had in the past
- health conditions that other family members have
Be honest with your doctor, even if a symptom seems embarrassing.
The doctor will do an exam and sometimes might order tests, such as an X-ray, ultrasound, or blood test. It all depends on what the doctor thinks is causing the problem.
Recommended Reading: What Causes Stomach Gas After Eating
First Up: Is It Actually Your Stomach That Hurts
Before we get into the most common causes of a crampy middle after eating, lets clear up something many of us have been unknowingly getting wrong since we were kids. When you say your stomach hurts, chances are youre talking about the part of your torso between your chest and your hips. This part of your body is technically your abdomen. Your stomach starts a bit under your chest on your left side and extends down into the middle of your torso.
Its no surprise, then, that figuring out exactly what hurts in this general area can be tricky. There are organs that overlap, Nitin Ahuja, M.D., M.S., assistant professor of clinical medicine in the gastroenterology department in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, tells SELF. The small intestine occupies a lot of space, and the colon sort of drapes around the entire abdomen and overlaps of the stomach as well.
Also, depending on what is going on, the nerves in the abdomen may not be as good at localizing pain, Dr. Ahuja says, so it might be hard to tell where the pain is coming from. Keep all of this in mind as you try to figure out what might be causing your post-eating cramps. Now, for the next bit of background information you need to know, since high school biology was a long time ago for some of us
Symptoms Of Stomach Pain After Meals
Most of the time, the causes of digestive trouble after eating are not too much to worry about. But if the pain is very strong, sudden, or long-lasting, it should be examined by a doctor as soon as possible.
Some common warning signs of stomach pain after a meal are:
Just because others can tolerate certain kinds of food well, does not mean you will too. Eating too fast, too much, or foods too high in fat can all trigger gas and bloating issues in the stomach. Try logging the foods you eat and tracking how your body responds to different things.
Stomach pains after eating, coupled with constipation, can spring from various lifestyle and dietary factors. For example, the abdominal muscles and diaphragm are needed to aid digestion, and insufficient fiber in the diet can make it hard for food to pass through your system properly.
Heartburn often accompanies stomach pain and indigestion. Heartburn is often caused byacid reflux, the reverse flow of stomach acid up into the esophagus, causing burning and discomfort. Too much alcohol and fatty food are often to blame.
Nausea is an important sign to look out for because it has several possible causes, anything from food poisoning to Crohns disease, a chronic inflammatory disease of the gastrointestinal tract. If you regularly feel nauseous after eating, see a doctor.
Other symptoms and warning signs associated with stomach pain after eating are:
Recommended Reading: What Causes Stomach Cramps After Eating
If Your Abdominal Cramps Are Making Life Miserable Try To Talk To A Doctor
Treatments for the above issues can vary wildly. For instance, if you think the issue is that you have a hard time processing beans, which then leads to painful gas, over-the-counter medications like simethicone may help with the distension that causes your pain, Dr. Krishnareddy explains.
However, if youre experiencing cramps that are pretty severe, along with other symptoms that make you think you might have a chronic issue like IBS or IBD, its really important to try to consult with a doctorparticularly because taking over-the-counter medications wont treat the real issue at hand.
These medications can decrease the symptoms just enough that the person doesnt go to their doctor to get evaluated, Dr. Krishnareddy says. But its not actually the underlying problem.
Ultimately, if getting abdominal cramps after eating is affecting your life, its time to consult the professionals. If youre having symptoms that are occurring frequently enough to interfere with your ability to conduct your daily activities, you need to see a doctor, Dr. Chey confirms. This is especially true, he says, if youre having serious symptoms like vomiting , seeing blood in your stool , or inexplicably losing weight.
Trust your gut when it tells you somethings wrong. At the very least, your doctor should be able to ask you some questions that get you closer to figuring out whats going on.
What Are The Symptoms Of Gastritis
While symptoms may vary from person to person, some of the most common symptoms include:
- Burning feeling in the stomach between meals or at night
- Abdominal pain, especially in the upper abdomen just below the sternum or breastbone
- Nausea or recurrent upset stomach
- Abdominal bloating
- Black, tarry stools
You May Like: Does Stomach Cancer Cause Bloating
How Are Helicobacter Pylori Transmitted
Even though there are many hypotheses for how Helicobacter pylori are transmitted, their major mode of transmission is not specifically known. Possible routes of infection include oral-oral , fecal-oral , and sometimes spread via inadvertent use of unsterile medical equipment such as probes or endoscopes.
What Foods Trigger Gastritis
Diet does not generally cause chronic gastritis, but some foods can make the symptoms worse, including fried, fatty, spicy, and highly acidic foods, such as citrus fruits or tomatoes. Other triggers include alcohol, coffee, and fruit juices.
There are a number of foods and drinks that can help ease symptoms of gastritis and promote good digestive health, including:
- High-fiber foods: whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and beans
- Low-fat foods: fish, lean meats, and vegetables
- Low-acidity foods: vegetables and beans
- Non-carbonated drinks
- Caffeine-free drinks
The Helicobacter pylori bacteria is the most common cause of gastritis, so eating healthy, probiotic foods can help as well, such as yogurt, kimchi, sauerkraut, and kombucha.
Read Also: What Is Pain In The Stomach
Stomach Pain After Eating Here Are 7 Things It Could Be
Recurring stomach pain after eating is not good and maybe a sign of chronic indigestion or an underlying medical condition that needs to be checked by a specialist. Gas, bloating, nausea, and abdominal pain can affect your routine life and eating habits to a large extent. The gastrointestinal specialists at Manhattan Gastroenterology use the latest technological advancements to find out what may be wrong with your digestive system and come up with the best treatment options for your specific symptoms. The top-rated gastro doctors diagnose and treat your ailment, provide quick relief to protect your gastrointestinal health, and help you feel better in the shortest possible time.
Stomach pain or gastrointestinal discomfort after eating a meal is not dangerous if you know what is causing it and subsides on its own. Most people report bloating, a swollen stomach, feeling full quickly, and diarrhea, which is quite normal if it is happening from overeating, consuming something undercooked, or contaminated. However, if you continue to experience ongoing discomfort despite making lifestyle and dietary changes, it may be some medical issue that needs to be checked.
How Is Indigestion Treated
Most people find relief from indigestion by making diet changes or taking medication. Your healthcare provider may recommend a combination of both.
Diet changes include:
- Avoiding foods or drinks that trigger indigestion.
- Cutting down on alcohol, caffeine and carbonated drinks.
- Removing fatty, spicy or acidic foods from your diet.
Also Check: Do Probiotics Make Your Stomach Hurt
What Are Stomach Cramps
It can be really worrying if you get stomach pains after eating. Stomach ache, stomach cramps, tummy ache or tummy cramps often refer to the same thing. Its the dull ache you feel in your stomach or abdomen.1
Ordinarily they are short-lived and soon disappear. Although, in more severe circumstances, if your pain starts suddenly and unexpectedly It may be more cause for concern.2
According to the NHS there are four common stomach cramp causes. They are3:
It’s advised that you should see your GP if:
- If the pain quickly gets worse
- If pain or bloating will not go away or keeps coming back
- If you have stomach pain and problems with swallowing food
- If you lose weight without trying to
- If you suddenly pee more often or less often
- Peeing becomes suddenly painful
- You bleed from your bottom or vagina, or have abnormal discharge from your vagina
- Your diarrhoea does not go away after a few days
Stomach Pain After Eating: Causes And Natural Treatments
Mealtimes are supposed to be enjoyable occasions when we can spend time with family and close friends. However, it can be very frustrating if immediately after eating, you suffer from stomach cramps, discomfort, or abdominal pain. Very often there are some simple home remedies that can help you relieve and treat the post-meal intestinal pain.
Lets look at the most common reasons for this type of pain as well as ideas on how to relieve stomach ache after eating.
You May Like: What To Give Toddler For Stomach Ache
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.
Stomach Bloating After Eating: Causes And Treatment
Bloating can be a huge painliterally. Bloating is characterized by inflation of the stomach, often after eating. Stomach bloating can often occur after eating certain foods. It may be accompanied by pain, cramping, flatulence, and belching. At times, bloating can be caused by underlying medical conditions and can be experienced by women during menstruation, but more often, bloating is a result of dietary choices. Bloating is usually temporary and will subside on its own in time.
Recommended Reading: What Helps With Stomach Bloating And Gas
When To Call Your Healthcare Provider
Some kinds of stomach pain need immediate attention. With others, you can call or visit your healthcare provider. It can be hard to know what you should do. Listen to your body and trust your instincts if you’re not sure.
If you have any of these symptoms along with stomach pain, call your healthcare provider within one to two days:
- Fever for three days or longer
- Loss of appetite
- Pain that gets worse or doesn’t get better within one or two days
You should also call your healthcare provider if you have stomach pain while you are being treated for cancer.