Ulcers

December 29, 2010

Gastric Ulcer Symptoms

Gastric ulcers can be painful, and sometimes fatal if the symptoms are ignored. An ulcer occurs when the lining of the digestive tract becomes damaged, and a hole or tear occurs due to injury or trauma. An ulcer can happen anywhere in the body’s digestive system, but when it happens in the stomach, it’s labeled as a gastric ulcer.

Gastric ulcer symptoms are slightly different than ulcer symptoms located in other portions of the body. For example, eating doesn’t generally relieve pain as it might with other ulcers. In fact, eating may cause pain. The pain can be a dull ache located in the upper chest area, possibly below the breastbone.

Other symptoms of a gastric ulcer include:

  • Heartburn or acid reflux
  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss that wasn’t part of a planned diet program
  • Waking up in the night with pain. Only about 3 out of every 10 people with a gastric ulcer will experience this symptom, and it generally occurs 3 or 4 hours after dinner. Eating late meals will exacerbate it.
  • Vomiting, and vomiting blood, which may look like coffee grounds
  • Blood in the stool, which would look like a black or tarry substance
  • Some people may not have any symptoms at all

Causes

Gastric ulcers have a few causes, but one thing in particular is pointed to as the main cause,┬áHelicobacter pylori. H. pylori is a corkscrew shaped bacteria found in most everyone. It’s unknown why it causes problems in some people and not others. An H. pylori infection occurs when the bacteria grows in the lining of the stomach, causing it to be easily damaged by stomach acids and other digestive enzymes. An H. pylori infection is generally cleared by a course of antibiotics, followed by additional testing to make sure the infection has been eradicated.

Pain killers are another main cause of gastric ulcers. Pain killers stop the body’s production of an enzyme that protects the stomach lining, making it more susceptible to damage. NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) like Aleve and Ibuprofen as well as Aspirin and prescription pain killers can all be pointed to as causes of gastric ulcers.

Another thing thought to cause gastric ulcers is smoking. The nicotine found in cigarettes is thought to increase the presence of acids in the stomach, making the lining more susceptible to damages. Smoking also slows the body’s natural healing process, making it difficult to recover from an existing ulcer.

Alcohol can also erode the stomach lining. Although, it’s unclear if alcohol will actually go so far as to cause an ulcer, or just worsen an existing ulcer, it should generally be used in moderation.

Stress is another thing that can’t be pointed directly to as a certain cause for ulcers, but it will definitely worsen an existing ulcer. Stress is thought to be the cause of a wide range of health problems, so whether it caused your ulcer or not, it’s beneficial to try and get your stress levels under control. Reduce your stress by putting some instrumental or calming music on in the background at work, or enrolling in a meditation class. These techniques will help you relax and allow your body to heal much faster.

For more information on gastric ulcer symptoms, check out The Reflux Remedy Report at www.refluxremedy.com.

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Symptoms of a Gastric Ulcer

A gastric ulcer happens when the lining of the stomach becomes damaged or torn in some way. Some people may never experience symptoms of a gastric ulcer, while others will have intense pain and bleeding. If left untreated, a gastric ulcer can sometimes be fatal, so always seek medical attention if you suspect you have a gastric ulcer.

What would I feel if I had a gastric ulcer?

As stated before, some people won’t have any symptoms of a gastric ulcer. But, if you do experience symptoms they can include:

  • Blood in your stool that would look like a black or tar-like substance
  • Vomiting, potentially vomiting blood that may resemble coffee grounds

If either of these symptoms is occurring, seek medical attention immediately.

These can be signs of a bleeding ulcer, and should be treated as quickly as possible to prevent further complications:

  • Nausea
  • Weight loss that wasn’t part of a planned diet and exercise routine
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pain after eating
  • Dull pain in the upper chest, near the breastbone
  • Pain that wakes you up in the night

What can I point to for causing my gastric ulcer?

The most common cause of gastric ulcers, or ulcers located in the stomach, is the H. pylori bacteria. It’s a fairly common infection caused by regular day-to-day contacts, like kissing. It can also be found in some foods and contaminated water. Some people who have the bacteria don’t even know it, while in others it goes into overdrive and multiplies in the stomach lining, making it vulnerable to corrosive stomach acids. Your doctor can perform tests to see if you have H. pylori. If you do, a course of antibiotics is generally prescribed, followed by additional tests to make sure the bacteria has been killed.

Another common cause of gastric ulcers is pain killers. If you have chronic pain, like joint pain or headaches, you need to be aware that pain killers can have some pretty serious consequences when taken regularly. NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) inhibit the production of a protective enzyme in the stomach. Without this enzyme, the stomach lining is vulnerable to stomach acids and other digestive elements that are meant to break things down. Aleve and Ibuprofen are a few NSAIDs that should be taken in moderation, along with Aspirin and prescription pain medications. If you have an ulcer or are susceptible to them, your physician should be aware of it so he can prescribe your medications accordingly.

A few other things that are thought to worsen ulcers are alcohol and stress. Both cause the body to produce an excess of stomach acids, which leads to ulcers. While a direct link can’t be made between either and a cause of ulcers, they are defiantly blamed for worsening ulcers and making it more difficult for the body to heal from an ulcer. Eliminate these factors by lowering your alcohol consumption and focusing on relieving stress in your life.

Gastric ulcers can be a very painful condition. For more information on symptoms of a gastric ulcer, their causes and healing them, read The Reflux Remedy Report at refulxremedy.com today!

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December 28, 2010

Natural Ulcer Cures

Ulcers happen when the lining of the stomach is damaged. Natural ulcer cures involve eliminating stomach irritants to allow the body to heal itself. However, if your ulcer is caused by the bacteria H. pylori, you will probably not be able to completely cure your ulcer naturally.

H. pylori is a fairly common bacteria spread by close contact and consumption of contaminated water and food. It grows in the stomach lining, which irritates it and makes it vulnerable to harmful acids meant to break down foods. Generally, it can only be resolved with antibiotics. However, using natural techniques in addition to antibiotics can help the healing process along.

If your ulcer isn’t caused by H. pylori there are a number of things you can do to help relieve pain and allow the body to heal. First, watch what you eat. Although a bland diet is no longer generally necessary when you suffer from an ulcer, eating smart can help. Fatty and spicy foods increase the production of stomach acids, which can be detrimental to the healing process. Additionally, highly acidic foods like citrus fruits and juices as well as tomatoes can have a harmful effect on a healing ulcer. Instead, go for whole grain breads, lean and lightly seasoned meats, low fat milks and dairy products, and other such easily digestible foods.

Also, watch how much you eat. Large meals can cause pressure build up in your stomach and cause pain and heartburn indigestion. That’s counterproductive when trying to let an ulcer heal. However, eating less doesn’t necessarily mean eating less. Just eat smaller meals more often, rather than a few large meals every day. That way your stomach receives tidbits of nutrition throughout the day, keeping your digestive system from getting overwhelmed.

Another thing that can majorly exacerbate an ulcer is pain killers. While ulcers can be terribly painful, and it is very tempting to reach for some Aleve, or even a prescription medication, resist! Pain killers can often cause ulcers and make the healing process virtually impossible. NSAIDs – or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs – like Ibuprofen restrict the body’s production of enzymes that protect the stomach lining from harmful acids. Without those enzymes damage occurs, resulting in ulcers and even worsening existing ulcers. The bottom line is: Resist pain killers when you have an ulcer. If you get a headache, try a massage or a dark room. If you have joint pain, try a hot or cold compress.

Stress is another element that can keep your ulcer from healing. Stress signals the body to produce extra stomach acid, which can stall the healing process. To prevent this, relax! Get a massage, add exercise to your routine, take a deep breath, anything that will help you stay cool, calm and collected. Stress is being blamed for a number of health problems ranging from heart diseases to gastrointestinal problems, so reducing stress in your life can help you have a healthier mind and body in addition to helping your ulcer heal.

Finding natural ulcer cures just takes a bit of patience and common sense. It doesn’t take much too simply give your body the time and space it needs to heal.

For more information on natural ulcer cures, visit www.refluxremedy.com.

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What Can I Eat With a Stomach Ulcer

If you have a gastric ulcer, you might be wondering, what can I eat with a stomach ulcer?

A stomach ulcer happens when the lining of the stomach becomes traumatized or injured in some way. This can be a result of a bacterial infection called H. pylori, stress, smoking, pain killers, or alcohol.

Eating and certain types of food can exacerbate a stomach ulcer and cause additional pain. Some people may find it helpful to watch what they eat if they have an ulcer.

Foods to eat

Certain foods are easier for your stomach to digest and may help make the eating process slightly less painful where an ulcer is involved. Focus on:

  • Whole grain, seedless breads
  • Low acid fruits and vegetables
  • Lean, unseasoned meats like pork, beef and poultry
  • Fish
  • Low fat dairy products in moderation

Foods to avoid

Other foods won’t necessarily cause a stomach ulcer, but they can certainly worsen it, or delay the healing process. Stay away from these types of foods:

  • Fatty breads like croissants
  • Fruits and vegetables that are high in acids, like tomatoes and all types of citrus including grapefruit, oranges and lemons
  • Heavily seasoned foods like beef, pork, poultry and fish
  • Whole milk and dairy products high in fat content

These are difficult to digest and cause the body to produce additional stomach acids to accommodate the digestion process, which can irritate an ulcer

  • Fried foods, like fast food
  • Fatty desserts like cake and ice cream

Things that might help

In addition to what to eat, there are methods you might practice to keep pain at bay when trying to let a stomach ulcer heal.

For example, eat smaller portions more frequently. This keeps your stomach from being bombarded by a huge amount of food, which creates pressure in the stomach and can result in a buildup of acid. This will aggravate your ulcer and cause more pain. Smaller amounts of food helps the stomach?s digestion processes go more smoothly, and can keep pain at bay.

Additionally, try to avoid pain killers. A stomach ulcer can be pretty painful, but taking a pain killer can majorly worsen the condition. Whether it’s an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug) like Ibuprofen or Aleve, Aspirin, or a prescription pain medication, these drugs can inhibit the body’s production of protective enzymes in the stomach, making the lining terribly vulnerable to harmful acids. If you have an ulcer, seriously restrict your intake of pain killers in order to allow your body to heal.

Another way to help an ulcer heal is to reduce your stress levels. While stress hasn’t been proven to cause an ulcer, it is thought to worsen one, by subjecting the already irritated stomach lining to additional acids. If you feel like you’re getting too stressed out, take a walk, add regular exercise to your routine, take a few deep breaths, or enroll in a course on meditation. Practicing a few simple strategies now can help you have a healthier mind and body in the future.

Hopefully by now you understand better what you can eat with a stomach ulcer. If you’d like more information, head over to refluxremedy.com to find out what can cause a stomach ulcer and additional treatment options.

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