Feeling out of sorts today and not sure why? That bout of the blues you’re dealing with could be coming from your stomach issues.
Yes, your digestive tract is responsible for more than your bathroom habits. It plays a role in nearly every system in your body and can affect your energy levels, overall wellness, and even your mood.
The environment in your gut, called a microbiome, is full of essential bacteria created within the first three years of your life. These bacteria thrive here and play a vital part in your health. But over the years, this naturally beneficial gut environment changes.
When it’s out of balance, digestive issues occur that upset the delicate harmony in the rest of the body. Some of these conditions require medical help to manage, but many are easy to handle with some at-home habit tweaks. Here are three of the most common digestive problems and how you can deal with them.
1. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
Irritable bowel syndrome, better known as IBS, is a digestive problem that is usually diagnosed because of the severe abdominal pain that comes with it. This pain occurs before or after a bowel movement, which can be accompanied by constipation, diarrhea, or both.
The type of IBS a person has depends on what kind of bowel movements they experience the most. In addition to abdominal pain, symptoms of IBS include bloating, bowel movements that feel incomplete, and mucousy stool.
Experts attribute IBS to exposure to traumatic events or mental health conditions, thus strengthening the gut-mental health link. But IBS can also come from infection and other physical causes.
Managing IBS At Home
If you have IBS and want to manage it on your own, watch your diet first. If anything you’re eating seems to trigger a bout of constipation or diarrhea, work on cutting it out of your menu.
IBS can be stress-related, so managing anxiety and stressful circumstances is necessary. The link between gut and anxiety makes cannabis an ideal at-home solution for your IBS condition. Studies show that medical marijuana strongly reduces the symptoms of gastrointestinal diseases like IBS.
You don’t have to smoke weed to get these benefits. Veriheal explains everything you need to know about concentrates and how to use them to reduce your IBS symptoms here.
2. Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
GERD is an extremely common digestive disorder that occurs when a person has frequent acid reflux. The stomach is full of acids that break down our food. When this acid comes back into your esophagus, it causes irritating or painful symptoms, such as:
- Chest pain
- Trouble swallowing
- Acid reflux
Various factors cause GERD, such as obesity, some medications, pregnancy, Hiatal hernias, and secondhand smoke.
Managing GERD At Home
The quickest way to get relief from your symptoms is to change your diet. Watch what you’re eating and how it triggers your condition, then eliminate the foods and beverages that make you feel unwell.
Quitting smoking and stopping any unnecessary medications can help, as well. If your symptoms persist or worsen, talk to your doctor. GERD can have serious permanent consequences. Medication can reduce the symptoms and long-term side effects.
Having pain below your right-side ribs? You could have gallstones that need to be treated.
Your gallbladder is the little sac in your body that stores bile, a necessary part of digestion. Sometimes, the bile turns into tiny stones that form in this organ. These stones are typically harmless and symptomless — until they form in front of the gallbladder’s opening.
When a gallstone blocks the gallbladder, you’ll notice it. Symptoms include right-sided pain under the ribs, high temps, nausea, vomiting, jaundiced skin, and sweating.
Managing Gallstones At Home
While you can manage the symptoms at home through pain medication, treatment for gallstones is a medical issue. You may need a specialist to remove the gallstones from the bile duct or remove the gallbladder entirely if it’s serious enough.
Gallstones can have serious and painful consequences. If you experience any abdominal pain that lasts longer than eight hours and is accompanied by any other above-mentioned side effects, call your doctor or go to an urgent care clinic or emergency room.
Digestive disorders don’t just hurt your stomach. They have a role in your overall physical and mental well-being. Most of these conditions can be managed with proper diet and fitness measures, but if they worsen, seek treatment from a medical professional.
You’ll be amazed at how much better you feel when you get those symptoms under control and your gut health back in balance.