How to fix upset stomach problems: complete guide

how to fix upset stomach

Outlines how to fix upset stomach problems, symptoms, possible causes, best treatments, and when to see a doctor.

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How to fix an upset stomach: causes
How to fix an upset stomach: Treatments
Is it gastritis?

An upset stomach is usually harmless: The causes range from a lavish feast to excessive alcohol consumption the evening before. The symptoms are often difficult to differentiate from other diseases, and a misdiagnosis can lead to complications.

How to fix an upset stomach: causes

Feeling unwell, a queasy stomach, nausea and bloating can all indicate an upset stomach. It is often associated with cramping abdominal pain and heartburn. If the disease is severe, diarrhea and vomiting can occur. The symptoms usually occur relatively soon after the cause: the symptoms become noticeable shortly after a high-fat meal or the next morning at the latest.

The reasons are varied, but the symptoms are always a sign that the stomach is overwhelmed and rebelling: Often, spoiled foods or foods that are difficult to digest are the reason. Nowadays there is sometimes little opportunity to eat in peace. As a result, too little is often chewed. The stomach acid cannot process the large bites well, so they stay longer in the stomach. The body also has to produce more stomach acid – this often leads to heartburn. Stress and a hectic pace also change the motility of the gastrointestinal tract.

Motility describes the processes of rhythmic contraction and relaxation of the muscle tissue of the stomach and intestines. Gastrointestinal motility disorders can be due to excessive movement – for example, caused by cramping muscles – but also reduced mobility due to insufficient tension in the muscles. The movements are coordinated by the enteric nervous system (ENS), also called the intestinal nerve or intramuthal system.

The complaints usually only last for a short time. Once the stomach has overcome the acute overload, the symptoms disappear and function returns to normal. If the symptoms persist, however, it can also be a serious disease of the gastrointestinal tract: Food poisoning often results from spoiled food , which can be life-threatening. The same applies to salmonella infections, alcohol poisoning or fish poisoning.

The consumption of contaminated or spoiled food can cause severe symptoms: Just a few hours after ingestion, symptoms similar to those of an upset stomach appear. Depending on the pathogen, the time it takes for the first symptoms to appear can also be longer and there can be severe headaches, fever or chills.

How to fix an upset stomach: Treatments

Treatment of an upset stomach is symptomatic. As with food poisoning, you should drink a lot and switch to smaller portions of light foods. Bed rest and warmth can also help alleviate the symptoms: a hot water bottle or a cherry stone pillow relax the overstimulated nerves and loosen up the muscles. The supply of electrolytes can also be useful in the case of massive vomiting with diarrhea. If there is extreme fluid loss, the blood can thicken and the risk of a circulatory collapse can increase. Children and people with previous illnesses are particularly at risk. A doctor should be consulted if the disease is severe.

  • Wrap a hot water bottle in a towel and place it on your stomach. The pain receptors are inhibited by the warm water in the hot water bottle, the pain is no longer perceived as so strong. In addition, the warmth promotes blood circulation in the tissue, the muscles can relax and relax.
  • A hot full bath also has a pain-relieving and relaxing effect on the abdominal muscles.
  • A gentle stomach massage can alleviate acute symptoms. To do this, make circular movements clockwise around the navel with the flat of your hand. If the massage is not comfortable, please stop.
  • Put a chamomile compress on the sore stomach. To do this, put three tablespoons of chamomile flowers in a bowl and pour a liter of boiling water over it. Let it stand for ten minutes. Dip a towel, wring it out and place it on your stomach at a comfortable temperature.
  • There are various types of tea whose ingredients are supposed to calm the stomach and have an antispasmodic effect: fennel tea, chamomile tea, sage tea, mint tea and lemon balm tea.
  • The spice cardamom has a calming effect on the stomach. Simply add a pinch of the spice to the tea.
  • Prevent unnecessary strain on the gastrointestinal tract. So, do not eat heavy and fatty foods, do not smoke and do not drink alcohol.
  • Eat easily digestible foods: potatoes, rusks, rice, carrots, fruits such as bananas, apples and pears, poultry and veal.
  •  Taking caraway oil from the pharmacy with some water with food relieves pain.
  • Slowly chew a few caraway seeds.

If the symptoms persist over a longer period of time and cannot be calmed down with home remedies, a doctor should be consulted. This will clarify the exact cause of the complaint. Anyone who constantly complains of stomach ache after eating should definitely clarify whether there is an intolerance to a certain substance.

TIP: Keeping a record of what has been eaten over a long period of time is very important for the doctor. In this way, he can find out how exactly the symptoms are expressed and in which situations they occur.

Is it gastritis?

Inflamed stomach lining is an uncomfortable and painful affair. Those affected should interpret the signals from the body correctly and in good time. Because a visit to the doctor must not be postponed for too long in this case.

Symptoms of gastritis

Stomach pain, a feeling of fullness or a bloated stomach can be signs of an inflammation of the stomach lining. In addition to stomach pain, nausea, heartburn, belching or loss of appetite can also indicate gastritis.

Risks of inflammation of the stomach lining

Those affected should have the complaints clarified by a doctor. Because if the gastritis lasts longer, stomach ulcers or injuries to the stomach wall are possible consequences.

Gastritis due to Helicobacter pylori bacteria

Gastritis is triggered, among other things, by certain bacteria (Helicobacter pylori bacteria). These disturb the regulation of gastric acid production, and over-acidification occurs. The bacteria spread through saliva, vomit, stool, drinking water or food. Many people are likely to get infected in childhood, but they do not necessarily get an inflammation of the stomach lining.

Gastritis from medication

The use of certain anti-inflammatory pain medication (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, NSAIDs) can also lead to inflammation of the stomach lining. Those who only take these products for a short time usually have nothing to fear, over a longer period of time they can disrupt the protective function of the gastric mucosa and make it more susceptible.

Gastritis from alcohol, stress, smoking

Excessive alcohol consumption can also lead to inflammation of the stomach lining. Smoking, stress and foods that are high in fat, sugar or spicy can make gastritis worse.

Treatment of gastritis

In the case of gastritis due to stress and poor nutrition, it can help those affected to change their lifestyle, i.e. not smoke, avoid alcohol, change their diet and ensure more relaxation. If that is not enough, anti-acid drugs are used. If the gastritis is triggered by bacteria, those affected are also given antibiotics.

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