Bloating is a common symptom that many people experience at some point in their lives. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including digestive issues, hormonal changes, and diet.
While bloating is often not a cause for concern and can be relieved with simple lifestyle changes, in some cases, it can be a sign of a more serious underlying condition that requires medical attention.
Stomach bloating is a common symptom that can be caused by various factors. The treatment for bloating depends on the underlying cause. Here are some medical professionals who can help in treating stomach bloating depending on its cause:
It’s worth noting that a general practitioner can assist in identifying the cause of bloating and make a referral to a specialist if necessary. However, if you’re suffering from bloating, the following are signs that you should seek medical attention:
Having a bloated stomach after eating is often associated with the presence of gas in the digestive tract. Sometimes, it is a consequence of bacterial fermentation of carbohydrates in the colon, as well as bad habits such as eating too quickly, overeating, or due to intolerance to certain foods as mentioned earlier.
Bloating is sometimes associated with intestinal diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease, gastric ulcers, or even lactose intolerance. For this reason, it is highly advisable to visit a doctor when abdominal distension becomes frequent, especially if the pain is accompanied by symptoms such as abdominal pain, weight loss, or even diarrhea.
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Despite being mentioned earlier, it is very important as a first step to check for intolerance to certain foods, the most common being lactose intolerance, gluten intolerance, and wheat intolerance. It is also advised to avoid carbonated drinks and to eat food slowly, which helps to prevent excessive air from entering the digestive system.
On the other hand, it is also advisable to avoid or remove from the diet any food that contains excessive seasoning or spice, as this irritates the intestinal mucosa. Cooking food by steaming or grilling can also be very helpful, as it avoids difficult-to-digest foods such as fried foods. Therefore, high-fat foods can be consumed, but without going overboard, as the body digests them slowly, which delays stomach emptying, leading to bloating.
When experiencing frequent stomach bloating, it is highly recommended to seek medical attention. The doctor may perform various medical tests to determine the underlying cause of the symptoms. These tests may include blood tests to check for infections, inflammation or deficiencies, and imaging tests such as X-rays or ultrasound to assess the digestive system’s structure and identify any abnormalities.
Additionally, other diagnostic procedures may be carried out such as endoscopy, which involves a thin, flexible tube with a camera that is inserted into the digestive tract to view the internal organs and tissues. This procedure is useful in detecting any abnormalities in the digestive system, including inflammation, ulcers, or tumors. In some cases, a breath test may also be recommended to diagnose conditions such as lactose intolerance or bacterial overgrowth. These medical examinations are essential in determining the root cause of abdominal bloating and ensuring timely and effective treatment.
Stomach bloating can be a common symptom that can be attributed to mild or temporary factors such as overeating or consuming gas-producing foods. However, there are instances where bloating can be a sign of an underlying medical condition that requires medical attention.
It is important to learn to listen to our bodies, especially after consuming certain foods, and to seek medical attention if bloating is accompanied by severe pain or discomfort, persistent or worsening over time, or accompanied by other symptoms such as diarrhea, constipation, blood in the stool, or unexplained weight loss. Following a healthy diet and avoiding bad habits can also be helpful in reducing bloating.