Figuring Out The Cause
When youre suffering from stomach pain, diarrhea, or both, one of the most important things is to try to determine the root cause. Quite often, this type of abdominal pain is due to stomach flu or another virus, spoiled food, or food that one has developed a sensitivity to. Unless diarrhea and pain are accompanied by other severe symptoms, such as a high fever, the best course of action is to wait it out.
If you feel that it is a reaction to food, most times symptoms will subside in a day or two. However, there are some instances of food poisoning that definitely warrant a doctor visit but again, you will see other severe symptoms along with general GI upset.
If you think you may be having a reaction to food, such as those with celiac disease who have a sensitivity to gluten, its worthwhile to try an elimination diet to confine the source of the upset. It is possible to suddenly develop a food sensitivity later in life its also estimated that up to 20 percent of Americans have food sensitivity. Please note that celiac is a serious condition and ongoing exposure to gluten can cause increasing damage. Celiac should not be self-diagnosed.
Stomach Cramps And Diarrhea
Diarrhea can give out several side effects such as abdominal cramps. Abdominal cramps and diarrhea, however, are only symptoms of several diseases that include food poisoning, indigestion, gastritis, difficulty in bowel release, parasitic infections, and travelers diarrhea among others. If a persons bowel movement occurs at least thrice in a day especially with stomach belching, it can be considered as diarrhea and diarrhea usually goes with stomach cramps.
Causes Of Stomach Cramps And Diarrhea
Many causes of digestive upset will also result in stomach cramping and diarrhea. Cramps in the lower abdominal area usually feel like short, sharp pains that donât last very long. Stomach cramps may also feel as if your belly muscles are tightening.
Some of the reasons for stomach aches that also cause stomach cramping and loose stool are:
- Inflammatory bowel disease
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You Got Into The Bag Of Sugar Free Candies
Sugar free candies may seem like a good idea, especially if you are trying to cut back on sugar while still getting to enjoy the sweetness they provide. However, these candies are typically sweetened with a sugar alcohols like sorbitol which is notorious for causing bloating, cramping and yes, even rampant diarrhea.
What To Do With Really Bad Stomach Cramps And Diarrhea
Stomach cramps and diarrhea are two different disorders but are usually observed to share a common occurrence. Both stomach cramps and diarrhea can occur at the same time or they can occur one after another with both being symptoms of each other. But whether their occurrence is the same or simultaneous both can be really irritating and troublesome. So heres what to do with really bad stomach cramps and diarrhea if and when you have either or both of them.
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How To Treat Stomach Pain Cramping And Diarrhea
There are many effective home remedies to help effectively treat the symptoms of stomach aches and pain that are accompanied by diarrhea.
The best kind of natural ingredients to use if you have stomach pain and diarrhea are ones that help reduce stomach spasms and soothe irritation. It is also important to drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated.
Chamomile. Research has shown that chamomile contains anti-spasmodic properties and can help to relieve stomach pain. The benefits of chamomile also help reduce the frequency of loose stool and improve symptoms of digestive upset.27
Chamomile tea and ginger tea are just 2 herbal teas that can help improve your digestion.
When you feel that your symptoms of an upset stomach and loose stools are getting better, you should switch to a bland diet. This contains foods that are low in fiber and donât place a burden on your digestion.
At the same, you should avoid fatty or spicy foods to prevent burning bowel movements and irritation of the extra-sensitive lining of your digestive system.
For more information, please check out my article on how to naturally get rid of diarrhea based on science.
How To Stop Stomach Cramps And Pain
Medically reviewed by Abbey Sharp, Registered Dietitian , BASc.
I discuss the common causes and symptoms of stomach cramps, and share helpful tips and remedies for pain caused by stomach cramps.
Lets be real, stomach cramps are not fun! Ive had my fair share of annoying tummy troubles and understand just how inconvenient and painful they can be.
So what exactly is the culprit behind those pesky stomach cramps anyway? Lets discuss the common causes of stomach pain and some helpful strategies to help get rid of cramps in their tracks.
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When To Call Your Doctor
There’s a bit of a gray area in terms of which stomach pain cases need immediate attention and which would warrant a call or visit to your doctor instead, as there can be symptom overlap. Again, listen to your body and your instincts if you’re not sure.
If you don’t have any of the symptoms listed above and instead have any of the following features of your abdominal pain, it is important that you contact your doctor within a day or two:
- Excessive vaginal bleeding or blood clots
- Vaginal bleeding that lasts for longer than usual
You should also call your doctor if you experience stomach pain while you are being treated for cancer.
Difficulty Digesting Certain Sugars And Sweeteners
Some people have difficulty digesting certain sugars or artificial sweeteners. Consuming these substances could trigger a bout of watery diarrhea.
Artificial sweeteners may also trigger diarrhea in some people. Sorbitol, mannitol, and other artificial sweeteners are common ingredients in chewing gum and sugar-free products.
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What Is The Treatment For Ibs
There is no cure for IBS, but there are things you can do to feel better. Treatment may include:
- Changing your diet
Your doctor may give you medicine to help with symptoms:
- Fiber supplements such as psyllium to help control constipation.
- Anti-diarrheal medications, such as loperamide , to help control diarrhea.
- Antispasmodic agents such as peppermint oil or dicyclomine to slow contractions in the bowel, which may help with diarrhea and pain.
- Antidepressant medications such as a tricylcic antidepressant or a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor if symptoms include pain or depression.
- IBS medication. A medication known as Lubiprostone is approved by the FDA for women with severe IBS-C .
Take your medicine exactly as your doctor tells you to. All drugs have side effects and may affect people differently. Tell your doctor about any over-the-counter medicines you take.
Causes Of Abdominal Pain And Diarrhea
Most people occasionally experience abdominal pain and diarrhea for short periods. Dietary changes, consuming too much alcohol, and indigestion may cause these symptoms.
Frequent, constant, or severe abdominal pain and diarrhea may indicate a disease or a more serious medical issue. Diarrhea that gets progressively worse and is bloody can be also be a sign of a more serious issue. Possible causes of abdominal pain and diarrhea include:
Diarrhea and abdominal pain that last for more than a week or that frequently reoccur may be a sign of an intestinal disease or disorder. You should talk to your doctor if youve experienced these symptoms for more than a week or on a reoccurring basis.
The above conditions and disorders can cause swelling of various parts of the digestive tract, such as the stomach and intestines. Inflammation of the digestive system can cause cramps and disrupt normal digestive processes. This usually results in abdominal pain and diarrhea.ADVERTISING
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When To See A Doctor For A Stomach Ache
If your symptoms are persistent and you’re having ongoing abdominal pain, it’s best to see your doctor rather than continuing to take these meds to rule out serious conditions.
Also, if your stomach ache is accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and fever, Gagneja says you should seek medical attention as soon as possible instead of trying to mask the symptoms with OTC medications. These symptoms could be a sign of appendicitis, which must be treated by a doctor.
Keep in mind that OTC medications are just band-aids for relieving symptoms. They are not designed to address any serious underlying condition, such as inflammatory bowel disease , celiac disease, ulcers, or cancer, Gagneja says. This is why it’s not recommended to take these medications long-term if symptoms are persisting.
“If people keep on taking these symptom relief over the counter meds, then those diseases can be missed,” says Gagneja.
Stomach Infections Or Food Poisoning
One of the most frequent causes of stomach cramps , especially those that appear suddenly, are stomach infections caused by viruses, bacteria or parasites or food poisoning, those that occur when we eat food in bad condition or possibly contaminated water.
Both stomach infections, which include common conditions like gastroenteritis , and food poisoning, share similar symptoms. If this is the problem, in addition to stomach cramps you will experience:
- Fever, usually occurs with infections
In this case, it is recommended to go to a health care center as soon as possible to get an accurate diagnosis and offer treatment to stop unpleasant symptoms such as diarrhea and vomiting. Additionally, in the case of bacteria, an antibiotic treatment will be required while stomach parasites will also require medication for their elimination.
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Natural Remedies For Diarrhea #8 Brat Diet
Eating high-binding and hardening foods such as overripebananas, rice, apple sauce and toast are definitely the way to goif you currently have a dose of the runs. Other foods including pasta, oatmeal,yogurt and healthy wholemealcrackers are also very good for treating diarrhea and hardening stools. Andmake sure you avoid all spicy foods and saturated fatty foods, especially friedfoods and takeaway foods. Eating these unhealthy foods will only keep sendingyou back to that dreaded thunder box!
Along with following the BRAT diet, try making yourself anice peppermint or chamomile tea as well. Chamomile and peppermint are bothvery soothing to the gastrointestinal tract and help to alleviate the build-upof intestinal gas that can sometimes accompany diarrhoea. Youcan easily buy chamomile or peppermint tea from most supermarkets or online. Forextra benefit and taste, add a slice of fresh lemon to your cup and drink 3-4times per day. For children with diarrhea, try giving them some peppermintcandy . Just be aware thatpeppermint candy can be high in sugar so be sure to go with a sugar free brand.
Prevent Diarrhea And Stomach Cramps
Diarrhea can be easily prevented with these simple methods:
- Observe proper hygiene.
- Keep your kitchen utensils especially your chopping board, clean at all times. Run hot water on your chopping boards every after use.
- Regular exercise is a good way of preventing abdominal cramps due to menstrual period.
- Avoid touching your face especially your nose and mouth with your hands.
- Wash your hands properly and frequently to avoid contamination. Using alcohol or hand sanitizer is highly recommended when soap and water is not available.
- Prepare your food well and if possible, eat your food while it is still hot and store left over on the refrigerator and reheat them before eating.
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When Stomach Pain Is An Emergency
Stomach pain can be caused by a life-threatening condition, such as appendicitis, bowel obstruction , or a bowel perforation .
These emergencies usually cause very noticeable and often intolerable signs and symptoms. Your stomach pain is probably a sign of an urgent medical problem if:
- You are pregnant
- Your pain started within a week of having abdominal surgery or a gastrointestinal procedure
- You have ever had a gastric bypass, a colostomy, or a bowel resection
- Your pain started shortly after you experienced severe abdominal trauma
- Your abdomen appears bruised or is rapidly expanding in size
Your stomach pain may be mild in the beginning, and then you may develop associated symptoms after a few hours. You should get help immediately if you develop any of the following symptoms along with your stomach pain:
- Abdomen is extremely hard
- Inability to have a bowel movement accompanied by vomiting
- Pain in neck, shoulder or between shoulder blades
- Vision changes
Why Does Belly Pain Happen
Pain is the body’s way of telling us that something’s going on. Belly pain alerts us to something that’s happening inside us that we might not know about otherwise.
Some reasons for belly pain are easy to spot, like when someone gets hit in the gut or eats spoiled macaroni salad. Oher times, it might be hard to figure out.
When you get a pain in your stomach, it might be an actual problem right in your stomach, but not necessarily. Your abdomen is more than your stomach. It’s more than your intestines. It’s the whole area between your chest and your pelvic bones. With so many organs in the abdomen, different problems can have similar symptoms.
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Can Otc Antidiarrheal Medicines Cause Problems With Other Medicines I Take
Taking certain medicines with antidiarrheal medicines can increase your risk for side effects. Bismuth subsalicylate also may affect some medicines, causing them not to work as well. Ask your doctor before taking loperamide or bismuth subsalicylate if you also take:
- Medicines for arthritis.
- Medicines for diabetes.
Also ask your doctor before taking bismuth subsalicylate if you take pain relievers or cold medicines. These medicines may contain aspirin, which is a salicylate. You may get too much salicylate if you take more than one of these medicines at a time.
Practicing Good Food Hygiene
Food poisoning resulting from a bacterial infection is a common cause of watery diarrhea. To reduce the risk of food poisoning, a person should:
- store foods at the correct temperature
- wash their hands thoroughly before preparing or eating food
- keep fresh produce and raw meats separate, and use separate utensils and chopping boards when preparing foods
- cook meat and seafood thoroughly
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What To Do About Nutrition When You Have Diarrhea
Do stick with bland foods. One tried and true diet for diarrhea is the BRAT diet: bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. Low in fiber, bland and starchy, these foods can help replace lost nutrients and firm your stools. According to the National Institute of Healths National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases , you can also try boiled potatoes, crackers, or cooked carrots.
Do eat small meals. Too much food will stimulate your gastrointestinal tract to move even more, says Ganjhu, and possibly worsen the diarrhea. Eating five to six small meals, rather than three large ones, can give your intestines a chance to digest the food more easily.
Dont eat fried food. Prepare foods like beef, pork, chicken, fish, or turkey by baking or broiling, not frying, which can worsen diarrhea. Cooked eggs are okay, too, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine.
Do eat when hunger strikes. Listen to your body and dont force yourself to eat, which can worsen symptoms. Trust your body to tell you when and how much it can tolerate, notes Ganjhu.
Dont eat fruits and vegetables that cause gas. Eating gassy food when you have diarrhea can increase intestinal gas and should be avoided. This includes fruits and vegetables, like prunes, berries, beans, peas, broccoli, corn, and green leafy vegetables, and sweet foods like cookies or cakes.
Symptoms Of Celiac Disease Include:
- Diarrhea, usually chronic, and fatty or greasy.
- Bloating, stomach gurgling, and loud noises.
- Malabsorption of nutrients such as vitamins and iron.
- Fatigue and severe iron deficiency anemia.
- Anorexia , and weight loss.
Some people may experience atypical celiac disease such as intermittent diarrhea and stomach gurgling.
Even more, some people may have asymptomatic forms of the disease .
when celiac disease is suspected, your doctor may need to take a biopsy from the small intestine or perform blood tests to confirm the diagnosis.
Gluten-free diet is the only and the best treatment for people with celiac disease. cutting gluten from the diet improves all the symptoms of celiac disease.
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What Causes Abdominal Pain And Diarrhea After Eating
Identifying the cause of your condition can help you to work with your health care provider on the effective treatment plan. Here are some situations that may be to blame for your symptoms
1. Viral Infection
Viral infection is a common cause of stomach cramps and diarrhea. They can cause diarrhea as well as make your digestive track super sensitive. The effects of viral infections usually last for a few days and then the symptoms subside. You may consult with your doctor for treatment.
2. Food Poisoning
Its hilarious that our bodies can identify what they should or shouldnt eat. In case you happen to eat contaminated food or drink contaminated water, the most probable way your body will get rid of it is through diarrhea, and you may feel some discomfort in the stomach. For instance, diarrhea after eating salad may mean that the salad was contaminated. Some cases of food poisoning are usually severe and if symptoms persist, immediately seek the help of a doctor.
3. Lactose Intolerance
In case you have an allergic reaction to lactose- a type of sugar mainly found in dairy products, then you may experience stomach cramps and diarrhea. if you take foods with lactose.
Sugar malabsorption is another condition related to lactose intolerance. In this case, ones body is unable to absorb sugars such as fructose and lactose properly. If these sugars reach the intestines, they may result in gastrointestinal issues as well as diarrhea.
4. Toddlers Diarrhea