Gastrointestinal meaning

Gastrointestinal disorders GI diseases are ailments involving the gastrointestinal tract. The oesophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine and rectum, and the accessory organs of digestion, the liver, gallbladder, and pancreas all form parts of the GI tract. These are the parts that can get affected by Gastrointestinal diseases. There are two types of GI diseases – functional and structural. Depending upon the disease, the intensity varies from mild disorders to critical conditions. Some common digestive system diseases symptoms include nausea or vomiting, food poisoning,  stomachache, and diarrhoea. 

GERD, diarrhoea and colorectal cancer are some of the examples of gastrointestinal diseases. Most gastrointestinal disorders treatments are easy to cure and safe.

Here are some of the gastrointestinal disorder symptoms. If you experience any of these, it is time you seek help for your digestive condition.

  • Abdominal discomfort: If you experience discomfort in your stomach, it is generally due to viral gastroenteritis, an infection. This affects your intestines. An individual can contract it by coming in contact with someone who already has the ailment or consuming food or water that a virus has contaminated. Symptoms of Gastroenteritis may take several days to appear, although they commonly don’t last for more than a day or two. Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhoea, cramping, a low fever, and nausea.
  • Abdominal Pain: Abdominal pain or stomach ache is a prevalent symptom that most people face. However, among people with GI disorders, the pain is debilitating. Most abdominal pain causes aren’t reasons to worry as they can be easily diagnosed and treated efficiently. Although sometimes, it can be a sign of a serious illness that would need immediate medical attention. For instance, you might experience indigestion, constipation, or have a stomach virus, or among women, menstrual cramps. Other possible causes can also be due to conditions such as Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, Food poisoning, Food allergies, Gas, Urinary tract infection, or Abdominal muscle strain or pull.
  • Unexplained weight loss: Unexpected weight loss may be a housing symptom for severe diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). IBD is an umbrella term that encompasses several chronic inflammatory disorders of the digestive tract. The two most common types are Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. If you are going through the same, it is best to consult a doctor immediately and start your treatments before it weakens your health and body.
  • Heartburn (Acid Reflux): It is often not something to worry about and can be treated over the counter medications and home remedies. However, it could also be related to severe conditions such as GERD. Gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD is a condition where stomach acids flow back into the tube connecting the mouth and oesophagus, causing a burning sensation. Chest pain, difficulty in swallowing, regurgitation of food or sour liquid, a sensation of a lump in your throat might be serious, and it would be right to see a doctor before further discomfort.
  • Nausea and vomiting: Nausea is often a sign of extreme pain, and it could be the result of anything from an allergy to cancer. Nausea and vomiting could also show signs of an infection in your GI tract or gallbladder, appendicitis, diverticulitis, pancreatitis, Irritable Bowel Syndrome(IBS), or an intestinal blockage. It commonly occurs due to any dysfunction of the digestive tract, but it is particularly related to gastroenteritis. A less common digestive tract disorder is the intestine’s interference, which causes vomiting as the food and fluids back up into your stomach because of the barrier. 
  • Constipation: If you are unable to have bowels in a week, having difficulty in passing stool or passing dry and hard stool, you are constipated. Several digestive diseases count constipation as a caution sign, like IBS with constipation. If constipation is a typical problem in your life, you could be suffering from prolonged constipation, a recognized GI disorder. Either way, you must consult a doctor who could help you identify and rid yourself of the disorder.

One must notice the above-given symptoms. It can indicate rare digestive system diseases such as Achalasia, Cyclic vomiting syndrome (CVS), Levator syndrome, Rumination disorder, Short bowel syndrome, etc. 

Possible causes for gastrointestinal diseases- 

Gastrointestinal diseases causes are as follows – 

  1. Stress 
  2. Not drinking enough water. 
  3. A low fibre diet 
  4. Sedentary lifestyle 
  5. Unhealthy and irregular bowel habits
  6. Age 
  7. Medications such as antacids, antidepressants etc. 

How to prevent gastrointestinal diseases?

Disorders of the digestive system in humans are prevalent. One must take the necessary precautions and the treatments as guided by your gastroenterologist. Seek help from the best gastroenterologist for quick healing. Just by maintaining a healthy and fit lifestyle, many gastrointestinal problems could be solved on their own. 

Here are some tips that will help you prevent digestive disorders:-

  • Eat your food by chewing it thoroughly and avoid overeating.
  • Drink plenty of water and fluids such as juice, broths and soups.
  • Have a combination diet and eat foods that are rich in fibrous content.
  • Avoid or limit your alcohol and nicotine consumption.
  • Avoid fast food and unhygienic street food.
  • Be active and exercise every day.
  • Wear comfortable clothes that fit right at the abdomen, as tight clothes could also cause stomach problems.
  • Maintain hygiene, wash your hands with soap and water or use a hand sanitiser before preparing food and eating.
  • Clean your hands thoroughly after using the bathroom, handling garbage, raw meat or after petting animals.
  • Exclude fatty foods from your diet and replace them with healthy alternatives.

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