Do you experience abdominal pain some few hours after eating a meal? Stomach ulcers could cause this. Statistics reveal that about 5 million of the American population live with this disease. Ulcers can be found in the duodenum, stomach or esophagus.
Many of us assume that all forms of ulcers come from stress or acidic food. Doctors differ with this saying that a lot of ulcers come from a bacterial infection. Acids in the stomach can also lead to ulcers since they can destroy the digestive tract lining. This occurs in people whose bodies produce excess acid. These are only some of the causes of ulcers. Today, we aim at helping you manage ulcers caused by different factors by discussing the symptoms and coping strategies.
What are the signs that you have stomach ulcers?
This disease comes with a burning sensation that often occurs after eating. Some people bloat after meals while others have stomach cramping. It is possible to vomit or experience nausea from ulcers. The stool may get dark, or you may suffer from diarrhea.
Some people lose weight due to the loss of appetite while others have difficulties sleeping because of stomach pains. You may also experience heartburns or dehydration. Fatigue and weakness are also possible symptoms of ulcers.
How to cope with ulcers
Seek medical treatment
Ulcers are painful, and they can threaten your life. The best option you have is to seek medical help to identify the cause of the condition. Apart from the bacteria we mentioned above, ulcers can also come from autoimmune disorders. Some of these include ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. A doctor can diagnose the symptoms you are facing to determine the right form of treatment.
Ulcers that is caused by bacterial infection is controlled through the use of antibiotics. These destroy the bacteria in the body so that it can stop affecting the lining of the digestive tract. You can also take proton pump inhibitors which control how much acid is produced in the stomach. Inhibitors such as lansoprazole and omeprazole can heal ulcers.
You can also take antacids
This is another form of medication which neutralize stomach acids. Antacids act as pain relievers since they can minimize the symptoms of ulcers. Some of them also contain alginate medicine which generates a coating that protects the stomach lining from acids.
Maintain a journal
You can monitor the intensity of pain caused by ulcers using a pain journal. Write down the foods that you take as well as your daily activities. Use the journal to track any common patterns that trigger the pain. It can help you know which activities aggravate it.
Do not overeat
Your meal portions can affect the symptoms either positively or negatively. Taking a lot of food makes your stomach work twice as hard to digest it all. This leads to high production of stomach acid. Use small plates to maintain small portions that do not affect your stomach’s activities. Do not continue eating when you feel full. Take a lot of water to help in the digestion and minimize any pain.
Eat the right foods
Look for foods that are rich in flavonoids since these are known to contain healing properties. Flavonoids also provide your stomach lining with a coating to prevent it from getting destroyed by the acid. You can get flavonoids from some fruits and vegetables such as apples and broccoli. Do not take citrus fruits since they can cause stomach irritation.
You can also look for foods which have polyphenols. These act as antioxidants to prevent the abdomen from ulcers. They can also cure ulcers. Such foods include dark chocolate, dried rosemary, and black olives.
Your sensitive stomach does not need acidic or greasy foods. Such only trigger the production of the high amount of acid in the stomach and aggravate the condition. Fried foods contain a lot of fat that can cause discomfort and pain.
Not all drinks are safe for ulcers. Some can lead to pain due to increased acid in the stomach. Stay away from sugary beverages and carbonated drinks. You should also minimize your intake of caffeine and citrus drinks since they extend the healing process.
Avoid alcohol and drugs
Alcohol has harmful contents that can worsen ulcers since it encourages bacterial infection that destroys the lining of your digestive system. Visit alcohol rehab today if you are struggling with the use of alcohol and break the cycle safely.
Smoking other drugs are also unhealthy when you have ulcers. It makes your body produce more acid than it should release. It can also cause a peptic ulcer to people who carry H.pylori bacteria. Quitting this habit will keep your body organs safe from diseases and minimize symptoms of infections.
Whether the cause of your ulcers is stress or not, you need to manage these levels. The connection between the gut and the brain is strong, and stress can affect your digestion. Therefore, practice yoga or meditation as you increase your physical activities. Deep breathing exercises will give you a calming effect to regulate the production of acids in your body.
Probiotics are also an effective treatment for healing ulcers. They contain living yeast and bacteria that your digestive system needs to function appropriately. They also destroy the H.pylori bacteria that causes ulcers. You can get probiotics from yogurt, Miso, Buttermilk or supplements.
Avoid taking NSAID drugs
This is also another cause of stomach ulcers. Studies reveal that people who take this pain relievers daily are at high risk of developing ulcers. Drugs such as ibuprofen used to relieve pain and treat fever are forms of NSAID. They interfere with the digestive system by lowering the production of enzymes in the stomach. Your body needs these enzymes to protect the lining of the stomach from acid.
The techniques above can help you treat stomach ulcers without the need of undergoing surgery. It starts with improving your immunity and maintaining proper nutrition. A healthy lifestyle is also crucial in controlling ulcers.