Signs And Symptoms That Warrant A Trip To Your Healthcare Provider Or The Er
Stomach pain can have many causes. Most of them arent serious, but some are, and you need to be able to recognize the warning signs.
If you rest, avoid certain foods, take medication, or use a heating pad, you may get relief from some kinds of pain. For others, you may need urgent medical care.
This article offers some at-home remedies, but also presents symptoms that mean you should contact your healthcare provider. It also explains why some symptoms point to a true emergency.
Verywell / JR Bee
What To Do For Diarrhea After Eating
Here are some things to keep in mind if you have diarrhea after you eat. These tips can help ease the symptom or even prevent it from happening.
- Tell your provider: Let your provider know about your symptoms, especially if they are not getting better. They can help figure out the cause and get you the right treatment.
- Stay hydrated: Your body wont absorb fluids and minerals when you have diarrhea because of how quickly stool is passing through your system. Make sure to drink extra water, clear fruit juice, or broth to replace the lost fluids.
- Choose foods wisely: Stick to small meals of easily digested foods while you have symptoms. Avoid foods that can worsen diarrhea, like dairy products, fatty foods, and foods that give you gas.
- Use relaxation exercises to calm your body. Theres a close connection between your brain and your gut, so stress can be a trigger for diarrhea. Deep-breathing exercises and the strategic tensing and relaxing of muscles throughout the body can be effective in calming your body. They may also help slow the emptying of your bowels.
What Procedures And Tests Diagnose Diarrhea
In healthy people with diarrhea, and who appear well otherwise, the health-care professional may elect to do no tests at all. Stool cultures are not usually necessary unless there is high fever, blood in the stool, recent travel, or prolonged disease.
- In some cases, the health care professional may send a sample of the stool to the laboratory to evaluate if the cause of diarrhea can be determined . It usually takes approximately one to two days for the results of these tests.
- Blood tests are sometimes necessary for patients with other medical problems or with severe disease.
- A colonoscopy is an endoscope procedure that allows the physician to view the entire colon to evaluate for infections or structural abnormalities that could cause the condition.
- Imaging tests such as X-rays or CT scans are performed to rule out structural abnormalities as the cause of diarrhea, particularly when pain is a prominent symptom.
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What Other Symptoms Relate To Abdominal Pain
Pain in the abdomen may be experienced as aching, stabbing, burning, twisting, cramping, dull, or a gnawing pain.
The pain may also be accompanied by other symptoms, such as a feeling of discomfort in the abdomen, bloating, constipation, wind , belching , fever, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, fever, dehydration or loss of appetite
The pain might be steady or it might get stronger. It can be made worse or it can be improved by changes in posture or by coughing.
Describing the pattern and location of your symptoms to a doctor may help them in identifying the cause of your abdominal pain. These causes include:
- Peptic ulcer The pain is often felt in the upper abdomen, as a knife-like pain which goes through to the back.
- Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease The pain usually causes a central burning pain that develops just under the breastbone, and may rise upwards. It may be accompanied by belching.
- Appendicitis The pain usually starts near the navel before moving down to the lower right abdomen when it becomes more constant.
- Gallstones or gallbladder irritation The pain is felt in the upper right abdomen, back or right shoulder.
- Lower abdominal pain: Also referred to as lower stomach pain, it is probably coming from your bowel.
- Period pain This is usually a dull, cramping pain, felt low down, which may radiate through to the back.
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Symptoms Of Stomach Ulcers
Although the most common symptom of a stomach ulcer is a burning or gnawing pain in the centre of the abdomen . Not all stomach ulcers are painful.
Some people experience:
Speak to your GP immediately if:
- your symptoms persist
- youre vomiting blood the blood can appear bright red or have a dark brown, grainy appearance like coffee grounds
- youre passing dark, sticky, tar-like stools
- you feel a sudden, sharp pain in your tummy that gets steadily worse
These could be a sign of a serious complication.
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Belly Pain In The Lower Left Side That’s Worse When You Move
Abdominal pain in the left lower area of the abdomen may signify diverticulitis, small pockets in the colon that can become obstructed and tear. Traditional treatment includes antibiotics and stool softeners to reduce the risk of abscess formation. Physicians say according to recent research, antibiotics may no longer be needed in this scenario, and they recommend acetaminophen instead.
Are There Risk Factors
Some of the potential risk factors for developing high levels of stomach acid include:
- Medications: If you take medication to lower stomach acid production and then come off of treatment, you may develop rebound high stomach acid. However, this typically resolves on its own over time.
- H. pylori infection: Having an active H. pylori bacterial infection in your stomach may lead to an increase in stomach acid.
- Genetics: About
High stomach acid is often treated with protein pump inhibitors . These medications work to lower stomach acid production.
PPIs have a higher efficacy than H2 blockers. Theyre often given orally, but can be given by IV in more severe cases.
If your high stomach acid is caused by an H. pylori infection, youll be prescribed antibiotics along with a PPI. The antibiotics work to kill the bacteria while the PPI will help lower stomach acid production.
Sometimes surgery may be recommended, such as removal of gastrinomas in people with Zollinger-Ellison syndrome. Additionally, people who have severe ulcers may need to have surgery to remove part of the stomach or vagus nerve .
If heartburn is one of your symptoms, you can make dietary changes to help reduce your symptoms:
- eating smaller and more frequent meals
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Diarrhea After Eating: The Most Common Causes And Treatments
Jenny Hills, Nutritionist and Medical Writer Health
Having diarrhea is an unpleasant experience for anyone, but if you suffer from persistent or intermittent bouts of diarrhea after eating, it can make mealtimes a stressful event. You may find it hard to enjoy a meal because of worrying that it will be followed by the runs. In fact, the stress itself may also cause diarrhea to become worse after your meal.
Some of the possible causes for having diarrhea episodes after a meal, or postprandial diarrhea, are a viral or bacterial infection, lactose intolerance, food poisoning, and even stress. If you suffer from a chronic condition like irritable bowel syndrome, Celiac disease, or have had gastric bypass surgery, you may also frequently experience loose stools immediately after eating your meal.
The first symptoms of diarrhea may be stomach cramps or abdomen pain after eating. This can occur anywhere between a few minutes and a few hours after finishing your meal. The stomach pain is often followed by having to run to the bathroom.
Thankfully, there are many natural treatments to ease the symptoms of diarrhea after eating which can help you find needed relief and, in cases of chronic diarrhea , help manage your symptoms.
Lets look at some of the most common reasons why eating can sometimes cause diarrhea and what natural remedies are available to get rid of the symptoms.
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How Can I Get Rid Of Stomach Flu
The most important things you can do to feel better faster are rest and staying well hydrated. Between diarrhea and vomiting, your body loses a lot of water and electrolytes. If your belly is still upset, you can take small, frequent sips of water, sports drinks, juice or broth, or chew on ice chips. It is important to know that water alone may not be enough to keep you hydrated in severe cases of diarrhea so make sure to take in electrolyte balance hydration . Eat a normal diet when you feel hungry again.
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When To Call The Doctor
If you experience symptoms for more than a week, its wise to make a doctors appointment. However, if you have severe symptoms at any point throughout, it is also a good idea to be seen. Other symptoms that warrant a doctor visit include high fever, nausea and vomiting, confusion, difficulty speaking, vision problems, rapid heart rate, and seizures. While the most common symptoms of diarrhea and stomach problems are flu, food reactions, medications, stress, alcohol consumption, IBD, and IBS, these conditions can also be indicative of cancer, cystic fibrosis, appendicitis, or intestinal obstruction. If you have persistent symptoms, its best to be safe and be seen.
If you need to see a doctor for diarrhea and abdominal pain, or you are experiencing other GI upset, book an appointment at Carolina Digestive today.
Is It Normal For Your Stomach To Hurt When You Have Diarrhea
Abdominal pain or cramping may accompany diarrhea. Some of the most common causes include food sensitivities, bacterial or viral infections, and medication or alcohol use. It may also result from stress or chronic conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome .
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Stomach Cramps With Bloating
Stomach cramps with bloating are often caused by trapped wind, or constipation. This is a very common problem that can be embarrassing, but is easily dealt with. Your pharmacist will be able to recommend a product, which can be bought over the counter to treat the problem. If problems persist, you should see your GP.
Stomach/digestive Issues With Shingles
Has anyone has stomach or intestinal symptoms along with their shingles?
It feels like I have gastritis or colitis or something. Bloating, gas, burping, abdominal pain kind of all over, diarrhea. As if the shingles/pain werent bad enough! Also having some lightheaded ness which I feel is the virus in the ear area since I have facial/head tingling. If so, what do you do for the stomach discomfort?
4 years ago
I had exactly the same thing. I took a probiotic every day and followed each meal with 100g of probiotic yoghurt. The symptoms cleared in about a week.
Hope this helps
Posted 4 years ago
Thank you! I have been afraid to eat much for fear of the awful cramps! I am already taking culturelle and florastor daily, but I will add the yogurt and see if that helps.
Posted 4 years ago
I had severe nausea with it, so bad that I could not eat anything other than jello and had to have a Rx of Phenergan, which knocked me out. It lasted 2 weeks. From beginning to end , I was sick for almost 4 months. Still not 100% and dont think I ever will be.
Posted 4 years ago
My doctor prescribed me Zofran for the nausea. It helps a little with that symptom. I am afraid to eat much of anything at all due to the nausea and cramps. My bout with shingles has lasted since last July. Ugh! Hope you feel better soon! I hope we all do!! Thanks for the tips!
Thanks for your help!
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Causes Of Lower Abdominal Cramping
Lower Left Side Pain
The abdominal organs found in the lower left abdomen include a portion of the descending colon , part of the small intestine, the spleen, the lower portion of the left kidney, the left ureter, ovary and fallopian tube, the urinary bladder and all the nerves, blood vessels muscles and skin in the left lower quadrant.
An abnormal condition in any of these organs may result in abdominal cramping in the left lower side, including:
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How Do I Find A Healthcare Provider
If you experience any of the symptoms outlined above, please consult with your healthcare provider. If you need a gastroenterologist who specializes in IBD, we are here to helpour Find a Medical Expert tool is a great place to start. There are many factors that go into finding the right gastroenterologist. You may want to consider the following questions and preferences when selecting your gastroenterologist:
- Is the healthcare provider board certified?
- What are their specialties?
- Some physicians have an expertise in liver diseases, IBS, or IBD. You can find a healthcare providers specialty by visiting their website or asking the office staff when calling.
- Do they work with other gastroenterologists or GI surgeons who they can consult with?
- Visit our Find a Medical Expert directory
The Foundation offers a listing of healthcare professionals including adult and pediatric gastroenterologists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nutritionists, and mental health clinicians on our Find a Medical Expert Directory. Each professional listed has expressed an interest in IBD by becoming a member of the Crohns & Colitis Foundation. If you need additional assistance finding a gastroenterologist, please contact the IBD Help Center they will provide additional guidance and suggestions for locating a healthcare provider.
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When Diarrhea Wont Go Away
If you still have diarrhea after 4 weeks, then you have chronic diarrhea.
To figure out the cause, your doctor will want to know your symptoms and medical history. Youâll get the most out of your appointment if you can tell them:
- How long youâve had diarrhea
- Whether your diarrhea comes and goes, or is continuous
- If you think certain foods and situations make things better or worse
- If your stool looks bloody, oily, fatty, or watery
- Other symptoms you have and how long youÃ¢ve had them
- If you have a family history of chronic diarrhea
- Places youâve traveled to recently
- Unusual foods youâve tried in the last little while
- Any medication or supplements youâre taking
- If youâve lost a lot of weight
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Why Do I Have Stomach Pain And Diarrhea
Abdominal pain and diarrhea can be all-too familiar, and nearly everybody will suffer from this combination at some point during their lifetime. But how do I know if my stomach pain is serious?
Having diarrhea with stomach pain is a common symptom of stomach flu. The good news is, the discomfort and pain usually disappear within a few days. However, there are other reasons you may have stomach cramps or diarrhea, and its important to know when to see a doctor and when to ride the symptoms out.
Read on to learn about the different possible causes of stomach pain and diarrhea, how to prevent some instances of it, and when to give your physician a call.
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Should I Be Worried About Painful Diarrhea
Schedule a doctor’s visit for an adult with these symptoms: Diarrhea lasts more than two days without improvement. Excessive thirst, dry mouth or skin, little or no urination, severe weakness, dizziness or lightheadedness, or dark-colored urine, which could indicate dehydration. Severe abdominal or rectal pain.
What Can I Do At Home To Feel Better
Get plenty of rest and keep drinking lots of liquids until your symptoms pass. Drinks that have both sugar and salt help your intestine absorb fluids better and replace the lost electrolytes. Nibbling salty crackers along with ginger ale or a similar sweet drink could also help. Avoid dairy products like cows milk for one or two days milk can make diarrhea worse due to temporary lactose intolerance that often come with gastroenteritis.
To control severe diarrhea, your healthcare provider may recommend an over-the-counter medication such bismuth subsalicylate . You shouldnt use these medicines if you have a high fever or bloody diarrhea, which can be signs of deeper infection from bacteria or a parasite. Antidiarrheal medications arent safe for children to use. Instead, see your healthcare provider for treatment.
Nearly everyone gets a bout of stomach flu at some point. Its not pleasant, but it usually passes in less than a week. Give yourself time to rest and recover before you go back to your daily activities. Fortunately you can take steps to avoid the likelihood of passing it on to others or picking it up again in the future.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 04/26/2020.
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Causes Of Abdominal Pain And Diarrhea
Most people occasionally experience abdominal pain and diarrhea for a short time. Changes to your diet, 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 also be a sign of a more serious issue. Possible causes of abdominal pain and diarrhea include:
The above conditions and disorders can cause inflammation in different parts of your digestive tract, like the stomach and intestines. When your digestive system is inflamed, you might have cramps and trouble with typical digestive processes. This usually results in abdominal pain and diarrhea.
Abdominal pain and diarrhea that last for more than a week or keep coming back may be a sign of an intestinal disease or disorder. Talk with your doctor if youve experienced these symptoms for more than a week or on a reoccurring basis.