Causes of Stomach Pain

Heart Burn, GERD, Acid Reflux

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Common Causes of Stomach Pain

Everybody has had stomach pain at one point in their lifetime; most of the time when someone has stomach pain its just temporary and it’s not anything serious, but sometimes it can be. Its important that when you have stomach pain that you also compare that with other symptoms to understand better if this is something that will go away in a few hours, or if its time to see your doctor. Below, you will find the most common reasons for abdominal pain, as well as foods and activities to stay away from IF you have certain conditions. I.e.; GERD.

Most Stomach Pain is Preventable

GERD – Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease or GERD as it’s more commonly called deals with your GI. Mostly it’s a digestive disorder and it can affect the lower esophageal chambers. In most cases, if you have this, it probably feels like the end of the world for you. It can bring on a whole slew of symptoms inducing stomach pain, nausea, stomach aches, heartburn, acid reflux – where the acid in your stomach comes back up into your throat or your mouth, vomiting and more. However, its not the end of the world – this can be fixed, but you have to be super strict when it comes to your diet, what you are eating and drinking, as well as how you live your life. If left untreated, this can cause further issues than the ones you might be feeling right now such as hoarseness in your throat or voice, inflammation, and ulcers in the esophagus, chronic pulmonary disease, and even Barrett’s Esophagus. This is a change in the lining of the esophagus where it leads you to be more prone to getting esophageal cancer. Yes, GERD can result in death so it’s important that you take care of this now.

Heart Burn

Heart Burn deals primarily with the esophagus, it can cause acid reflux. If you want to know why you keep getting heartburn, here are a few reasons:

  • - Eating large quantities of foods or large portions.
  • - Eating certain foods like spicy foods, fatty foods, tomato-based, vinegar based or citrus based foods, this includes drinks too like orange juice.
  • - Drinking soda or anything fizzy, as well as coffee and tea.
  • - Being overweight.
  • - Being stressed out.
  • - Wearing tight fitting clothing, specifically around your abdominal area like tight fitting jeans, tight belts, etc.
  • - Lying down after you have eaten something right away.
  • - If you take certain medications, like Advil, you could be getting heartburn from that.
  • - If you smoke, you can also have more instances of heartburn than a person who does not smoke.

Alternative Heart Burn Causes

So you know what you shouldn’t be doing as noted above, but what are the right tings you should be doing?

  • - Meals: Your meals should be smaller in size. Instead of eating one large meal for dinner, try eating three smaller meals – 1 each for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
  • - Stressed out: If you are feeling stressed out or have a stressful life/job, try meditation, yoga, exercising, calming music or another option available to you.
  • - Foods you are eating: Stay away from or at least limit your consumption of things like fatty foods (cheeseburgers, fried foods, etc), spicy foods (that means no more hot wings!), limit your alcohol consumption, limit the amount of acidic foods and drinks in your diet like coffee, tea, soda pop – even chocolate.
  • - Diet: Try an elimination diet: This elimination diet will have you taking out ALL the foods that “tend” to cause stomach pain, aches, and acid reflux, and live as normally. Then, you can “clear the slate” so to speak. Once you eliminate all those at risk foods, you can then reintroduce them and see which ones are making you sick, and then you will be more aware of it so you can stay away from that particular food.
  • - Smoking: if you smoke cigarettes or cigars, it might be time to quit now. Smoking tends to relax the valve that stops heartburn and acid reflux from happening, which is probably why you’ve been having so much acid coming back up into your chest, lower abdominal chamber, and throat.

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Treat Heart Burn, GERD, Acid Reflux

There are several over the counter medications you can take for Heart Burn, GERD, and Acid Reflux; they include; antacids, acid blockers, etc. You can also try eating healthier as well, which should work better and in a more vigorous manner than the OTC options available to you.

Kidney Stones

One of the things your GI doctor might tell you about when it comes to kidney stones is that often when you get these, there are no symptoms – at first. Only until the stones begin to move and block the flow of urine, is when you will start to notice problems such as waves of sharp pain in your back and abdominal chamber, pain toward your groin or pelvic areas, vomiting, nausea, blood in the urine and the need or feeling the need to urinate more often than usual. In some cases, kidney stones can also cause an infection in with other symptoms such as painful urination, cloudy urine, fever and chills and foul smelling urine. If you suspect that you have kidney stones contact a GI specialist today for a consultation. If you live in Queens NY and looking for endoscopy center with the best gastro doctor near you please contact Palmadessa and Brodsky Gastroenterology Associates and schedule an appointment.

How Are Kidney Stones Diagnosed?

Kidney Stones are a part of life for many out there, but despite the pain that they may cause, they sometimes present without having symptoms. In other cases you could be having some of the symptoms but it could have to do with something entirely different. It's difficult for you to diagnose yourself, which is why you will need to see a doctor so that they can work up a CT scan, an x-ray, an IVP and an ultrasound just to name a few tests. Once your doctor does these tests, they will be able to offer a better opinion regarding if you have them and then of course how to get rid of them as quickly as possible.

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Medical Procedures To Get Rid Of Kidney Stones

There are several medical procedures offered by GI doctors. These methods include; Ureteroscopy, which uses a laser or similar device to break the kidney stone up into smaller fragments. These pieces can then be passed by the patient. The other option is called Lithotripsy. Ultrasonic Lithotripsy uses high-frequency sounds. Electrohydraulic Lithotripsy uses shock waves. Lastly, extracorporeal shock wave Lithotripsy uses shock wave impulses. While these procedures are safe, and they usually do work, people tend to try more natural methods first before the surgical methods.

Natural Methods To Cure Kidney Stones

Natural kidney stone treatments can help to soothe discomfort or speed up the body’s natural healing process, but they don’t always work for everyone.

- Lemon Juice, Olive Oil, and Apple Cider Vinegar: At the first symptom, you can try this method that uses Lemon Juice, Olive Oil, and Raw Apple Cider Vinegar.

- Dandelion Root: This is a good option to clean the kidneys out and remove toxins. Taking it twice a day can help with kidney stones.

- Pomegranate Juice: The seeds and juice of the pomegranate can offer a lot of healing and health properties when it comes to kidney stones.

- Magnesium: Studies show that people that keep getting kidney stones over and over again that take magnesium have a 92.3% improvement rate of getting them again.

Lactose Intolerance

More and more people over the past 15 years have been diagnosed with lactose intolerance. In fact, 30 to 50 million people are said to have this condition. And it ranges from all sorts of ethnicity including; 90% of Asian Americans, 75% of African Americans and Native Americans as well as 20% of Caucasians. When someone is lactose intolerant, this essentially means that you lack a certain enzyme called lactase, that helps you digest lactose, the sugars in milk and other items which can lead to an array of symptoms such as nausea, cramps, painful gas, bloating, even cramps, diarrhea and abdominal pain.

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Food or Not Food

Foods With Lactose

If you are lactose intolerant you might think you only have to stay away from milk, cheese, and ice cream – these are obvious items, but you should also stay away from; this list is pretty darn long but it is as follows;

  • Some cheeses
  • Buttermilk
  • Cheese spreads
  • Cottage and ricotta cheese
  • Evaporated milk and condensed milk
  • Cream
  • Hot chocolate mixes
  • Ice cream
  • Milk, malted milk, cultured milk, milk drink and kefir cultured milk
  • Processed cheese
  • Sherbet
  • Sour cream
  • Whey
  • Yogurt – ALL yogurts
  • Instant mashed potato mixes
  • Prepared muffins, cakes, muffins, bread, pasta, noodles, pancakes, waffles, etc.
  • Butter
  • Cream Cheese

Processed meats that use milk or milk byproducts

Pretty much the list goes on and on, but the main thing you want to stay away from are ALL foods containing any (even cooked in) kinds of milk, kinds of butter, byproducts of milk or butter like margarine, or any meal that has lactose in it.

Lactose Intolerance Tests

There are both at home tests and medical examinations your doctor can do for you, one of the easiest ones called the milk challenge test is the easiest, though. The milk challenge asks that you fast for the night and overnight, then in the morning before you eat or drink anything else, have a glass of milk. If the fluid presents the symptoms mentioned above, after about 3-5 hours long, you are probably lactose intolerant.

Another test is called the hydrogen breath test. This uses a tool to measure the amount of hydrogen in your breath after you consume milk 3-5 hours after you drink it. If you have a heightened measurement of hydrogen, it means that your body is not digesting the lactose correctly and it could mean that you are lactose intolerant.

Alternatives For Lactose Intolerant People

If you are lactose intolerant, or you just read the list above and have slumped into your chair, its okay, there are alternatives available to you. They might not taste as great as that cheese you love or a tall glass of cows milk, but if you miss out on those foods, these are some choices you can use for a close comparison.

- Soy Milk: This takes a little getting used to, but I am sure your gastroenterologist has suggested you try it! Soy milk is made from soybeans and water, it’s about as plain as you can get when it comes to the ingredients and the lack of lactose in the ingredients. It's very natural, and if you can get it chilled enough, it tastes pretty good. They also have flavors as well.

- Rice Milk: Also another fantastic option. Chances are if you don’t like the soy milk above you will like this or if you don’t like this you will like the soy milk. People tend to split their decisions between these two. Rice milk is made from rice. It's usually unsweetened, but you can also find it in flavors as well.

- Lactose-Free Milk: If you love regular milk but can't drink it, this one is going to taste a little different to you than the usual cup of milk, but if you use it for a month or so you will become accustomed to drinking it. This contains ALL the health benefits of regular milk, except it doesn’t have lactose in it.

- Almond Milk: Another very close cousin regarding ease of flavor, thickness and amount of ingredients, like with the soy milk and rice milk above. Almond milk is made from ground almonds believe it or not. It’s not only used for people with lactose intolerance but also persons who are trying to watch their cholesterol and keep it low.

One of the best things you can do is not to self-diagnose yourself with any of these issues. Apparently taking little tests along the way like the milk challenge is okay, but if you really DO have a condition like the ones above, it's best to talk to your doctor about it or speak to a top gastroenterologist in Queens so that they can better figure out what IS the issue with your condition and how to go about getting rid of it – naturally, or otherwise.