The Most Common Gastrointestinal Problems

To say that you have a problem with your gut seems to have some sort of stigma attached to it. Most people feel embarrassed to say it out that they are bloated or have hemorrhoids.

But gastrointestinal conditions are more common than you imagine. That’s a given considering the kind of lifestyle that’s prevalent these days, isn’t it?

Stressful work hours, junk food, lack of activity, lifestyle habits, what’s from stopping the most delicate body system from going bonkers?

Today, we take a look at some of the most common gut related problems that people face.

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)

GERD or Gastrointestinal reflux disease is one of the commonest conditions in the world. It occurs when stomach acids begin to move into your esophagus causing severe discomfort. The condition is often mistaken to be a heart attack because the acid can cause a sharp pain in the chest. The chances of this happening increase manifold after a meal or at night.

In most cases, OTC medications might provide temporary relief. But if you are having persistent GERD more than twice a week, then it might warrant a visit to the doctor.

Gallstones

Gallstones are formed in the gall bladder when the level of cholesterol in your gut increases. The bladder is unable to empty the bile stored in it which forms hard deposits that cause acute pain in the abdominal area. The stones may block the valves that connect the gallbladder to the intestines and may need to be removed surgically. In mild cases, medication is sufficient to dissolve the stones.

Celiac Disease

Caused by sensitivity to Gluten, a protein that is found in wheat, barley and some other grains, Celiac disease is one of the most severe forms of gastrointestinal disorders. The condition can affect the villi in the small intestines which aid in the absorption of nutrients from the food we eat. Without the villi functioning normally, the person becomes nutrient deficient. Some of the symptoms of the disease in children include bloating, constipation, weight fluctuation and vomiting. In adults the symptoms can be more severe and include depression, constant fatigue, bone loss and even epileptic seizures.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

IBS affects almost 15 percent of the global population and it can cause a whole range of annoying and debilitating symptoms. There can be bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea and sharp abdominal pain that precedes or follows bowel movement. You may find it impossible to pass stools one day and have extremely watery stools the next day. It is almost impossible to narrow down on the symptoms of IBS. Most doctors prescribe dietary modifications like avoiding FODMAP foods and using probiotics to help relieve the condition.

Hemorrhoids

Dark or tarry stool usually indicates blood and it might require a complete inspection of your abdominal lining. However, if you are seeing red blood, then it might indicate that you have a hemorrhoid. Hemorrhoids are caused when blood vessels near the anal opening get severely inflamed. They can be extremely painful, itchy and cause constant discomfort. In extreme cases, they can bleed and get infected, requiring surgical intervention.