Stomach problems, digestive issues or gastrointestinal problems have become a common problem everyone faces from time to time. From gas, diarrhoea and slow digestion to upset stomach, constipation and heartburn, these are just a few of the many stomach issues that all of us face occasionally. When you start facing digestive problem symptoms frequently they may lead to digestive disorders, stomach disorders, gastrointestinal disorder or maybe intestinal disorders. These disorders can cause major disruptions and discomfort in your life. To prevent this from happening changes in your diet and lifestyle can be implemented. From this blog you will learn about causes, symptoms, and treatments for certain digestive system problems, gastric problems, and other stomach related issues.

Digestive system problems also affect our digestive tract known as gastrointestinal tract (GI). Any health issue that affects our digestive tract is termed as digestive disease. The digestive system consists of oesophagus, small intestine, large intestine, stomach, pancreas, liver and gallbladder. Due to Covid many people have been facing frequent digestive issues and gastrointestinal problems which are more serious. These health issues need to be treated with utmost care. If you face such Read on the more about different types digestive problems their symptoms, causes and treatments for further understanding.

List of some common digestive problems recognized by best doctors include:

  1. Gastritis and gastric ulcers are types of stomach issues  that are caused by cancer or even Helicobacter pylori infection.
  2. Excess gas in stomach
  3. Heartburn and bloating are common gastrointestinal issues
  4. Constipation
  5. Food poisoning
  6. Gallstones
  7. Cholecystitis
  8. Cholangitis.
  9. Anal fissure
  10. Haemorrhoids
  11. Proctitis
  12. Rectal prolapse
  13. Pancreatitis

Most common cause of digestive problems:

There are many factors that can lead to problem in your gastrointestinal tract such as:

  1. Less physical activity such as walking, exercising, etc.
  2. Consuming a diet with low fiber
  3. Changes in lifestyle
  4. Increase in travelling
  5. Changes in your routine
  6. Stress
  7. Increased consumption of dairy products
  8. Pregnancy
  9. Consumption of medicines such as antidepressants, iron pills and other strong medicines.
  10. Consumption of calcium or aluminium-containing antacid medicines.
  11. The overuse of anti-diarrheal medications which results in weakening of bowel muscle movements over time.
  12. Feeling the need to have a bowel movement but opposing it, perhaps because of haemorrhoids.
  13. Ageing
  14. Genetic factors

Symptoms of digestive problems

The symptoms will definitely vary from condition to condition however, below listed are some general symptoms that consider most of the digestive problems. Common symptoms are:

  1. Loss of appetite
  2. Fatigue and tiredness
  3. Diarrhoea
  4. Constipation
  5. Unexpected weight loss
  6. Acid reflux
  7. Faecal incontinence
  8. Vomiting
  9. Bloating
  10. Abdominal pain or cramps

Other Digestive problems symptoms include, bleeding tissue in swallowing, nausea, heartburn, gas, and weight loss or gain. The symptoms one faces may differ from the condition they are experiencing and not necessarily that they go through all types of symptoms. Sometimes you might also see blood stains in your stool or vomit. When this happens and your symptoms get severe it is advised to consult a doctor as soon as possible or else the problem can be extremely serious.

5 simple solutions to manage digestive problems

Even though the specific treatment will depend on the particular problem a person is facing and what all symptoms are they going through, the below mentioned ways are some general and simpler way that will help improve your process of treatment:

  • Eating a high-fiber diet

There are many health benefits of fiber, including lowering cholesterol and reducing the risk of heart disease.Fiber helps regulate bowel movements, which in turn helps digestion. In accordance with national dietary guidelines, fibre ranks as one of the most important nutrients in the diet of most adults, who should consume around 30 grams daily.

Some good sources of fiber include:

  1. Fruits and vegetables
  2. Beans
  3. Whole grains
  4. Lentils
  5. Nuts and seeds

A person should also consider drinking enough liquids since it helps fiber to be absorbed easily by the digestive system and pass through it quickly.

  • Resting

Stress and hectic schedules are one of the factors that can contribut to digestive problems.

Stress can connect the brain and gut which can lead to problems such as gut issues or slow digestion. A link between physical health and mental health suggests that stress can lead to digestive problems.

Few ways through which you can manage stress:

  1. Get enough sleep
  2. Regular physical activity
  3. Thinking positive
  4. Have a calm mind
  5. Take out time for things you like
  6. Spend quality time with your friends and family members
  7. Have emotional support

Our lives have become really hectic and tiring. At times it becomes difficult to manage professional life and personal life which can cause stress leading to stomach discomfort, gastro problems or maybe small intestine problems. Therefore it is extremely important to take time, be calm especially before and after your meal. There are many more changes you can bring in your lifestyle that can help you avoid stress.

  • Avoid eating outside food

When your stomach is upset, it is crucial to take care of what you eat. Some foods that may increase your problem and therefore you should consider avoiding are:

  1. Alcohol
  2. Spiced foods
  3. Fried foods
  4. Caffeine
  5. Acidic foods

Additionally, prepackaged meals and fast food contain high levels of sugars, salts, and saturated fats which can be difficult for the body to digest leading to problems such as constipation and gas.

  • Do physical activity such as walking or exercising

Apart from our food, our body movement also affects our digestive system. One of its benefits is that it enables the gut and improves intestinal activity.The muscles in the digestive system are massaged by physical activity, causing them to work more efficiently and more quickly by increasing blood flow. This is called peristalsis.

Physical activity that will make your digestive system stronger:

  1. Walking
  2. Yoga
  3. Simple exercise
  • Applying the BRAT (Banana, rice, applesauce and toast)

A BRAT based diet will benefit your stomach. This was especially designed for kids when they have an empty stomach but works for everyone. Following the ideology of this diet will allow your gut to rest by eating easy to digest foods and decrease the amount of stool produced.

Apart from banana, rice applesauce and toast there are few more things that you can eat under this diet such as:

  1. Boil potatoes
  2. Weak tea
  3. Soda
  4. Broth
  5. Oatmeal

If you know someone who exhibits digestive problems or is having difficulty, consult Dr Nivedita Pandey.  Dr Nivedita Pandey is a Gastroenterologist and Hepatologist. She treats everything from acid reflux to ulcers, IBS, IBD, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and colon cancer.