Indigestion or dyspepsia is discomfort in the upper belly (also known as an upset stomach). Indigestion is a collection of symptoms, such as stomach pain and a feeling of being full soon after eating. Indigestion is a symptom of a variety of digestive diseases and disorders. An upset stomach may cause a painful or burning feeling in the abdomen.
Some of the symptoms associated with indigestion are bloating, nausea, vomiting, gurgling sounds, burping, and burning sensations.
Indigestion may manifest itself in a variety of ways. It is possible for some people to have several symptoms at the same time. You may also have occasional heartburn. Many factors, including diet, medications, health issues, and anomalies of the digestive system, may contribute to the occurrence of indigestion.
While dyspepsia (indigestion) is common, each person’s experience with the disease is unique. Indigestion is often relieved by a combination of lifestyle changes and medication.
Indigestion is diagnosed by the doctor after reviewing medical history, doing a physical examination, performing an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy, and ordering further tests as needed. Imaging, H. pylori testing, blood tests, stool tests, and urea breath tests are some of the other exams that may be performed in addition to the above tests.
Indigestion may be treated in a variety of different ways, depending on the underlying reason. Medications, dietary and lifestyle modifications, and psychological treatments are among the treatment approaches. Along with altering eating and drinking habits, a person may avoid dyspepsia by adopting healthy lifestyle practices.
You may prevent indigestion by changing your eating habits. If you have indigestion, you should avoid eating and drinking certain foods and drinks that may exacerbate the condition. Alcoholic drinks, coffee, acidic meals, carbonated beverages, spicy, fatty, and greasy foods are among them that need to be avoided in order to prevent indigestion.
A variety of factors may cause indigestion. Indigestion is often the result of an individual’s lifestyle, although it may also be induced by drink, food, or medicine. It is possible that lying down immediately after eating will make it more difficult to digest the meal. This increases the chances of experiencing stomach pain.
The following are some of the most common dyspepsia causes:
- Consuming too much food
- Eating too fast
- Foods that are fatty, oily, or hot
- Excessive use of caffeinated drinks, alcoholic and carbonated beverages
- Medications like pain medicines, antibiotics, and iron supplements.
Some conditions that are associated with dyspepsia are discussed below:
- Non-ulcer dyspepsia: This condition is known as functional dyspepsia. This indicates that no known source of the symptoms has been identified.
- Ulcers: When the stomach lining is destroyed, the underlying tissue becomes visible, resulting in an ulcer leading to indigestion.
- Duodenitis or gastritis: These are the inflammation of the duodenum or stomach. Both are possible complications, which may be minor or severe and result in an ulcer with the consequence of a sour stomach.
- Acid reflux: It is a condition in which stomach acid seeps (refluxes) into the esophagus, resulting in discomfort and acid indigestion.
- Hiatus hernia: This happens when the stomach’s upper portion pushes up into the lower part as a result of diaphragm insufficiency. It is often associated with upper abdominal bloating along with indigestion.
- Hpylori: It is a bacteria that may cause ulcers in the stomach and duodenum. This is one of the most common infections.
Other illnesses that cause indigestion are:
- Gallstones (causes abdominal pain after eating)
- Celiac disease
- Pancreatitis i.e. inflammation of the pancreas
- Stomach cancer
- Thyroid disorders
- Intestinal blockage
- Intestinal ischemia i.e. reduced blood flow to the intestine
Dyspepsia symptoms, often known as dyspepsia, can vary but typically include:
- Abdominal Pain: A gnawing or burning sensation in the upper abdomen is a common symptom. It is possible to describe it as discomfort or pain.
- Bloating: Indigestion patients frequently feel bloated or overly full after eating, even if they only ate a little meal.
- Nausea: Indigestion can cause nausea and the desire to vomit.
- Heartburn: A burning sensation in the chest, which is sometimes misdiagnosed as acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), might be a symptom of indigestion.
- Feeling Full Quickly: Indigestion patients may feel full after only a short amount of food.
- Belching and Gas: Indigestion can cause excessive belching and passing gas.
Indigestion is primarily diagnosed based on a healthcare provider’s assessment of symptoms and medical history. The absence of alarm signs (such as accidental weight loss, trouble swallowing, or gastrointestinal bleeding) frequently indicates that the dyspepsia is functional rather than caused by a disease.
dyspepsia diagnosis tests may not be required in such instances. If there are concerning symptoms or the healthcare professional detects an underlying ailment, they may request additional testing such as upper endoscopy, blood tests, or imaging examinations to rule out more serious gastrointestinal problems.
Dyspepsia treatment differs based on the cause and severity. In many situations, modifications in lifestyle and nutrition might help reduce symptoms. These could include:
- Dietary Modifications: Avoiding indigestion-causing meals such as spicy, fatty, or acidic foods, as well as excessive caffeine and alcohol, will assist.
- Eating Smaller Meals: Eating smaller, more frequent meals rather than large ones can help prevent digestive system overload.
- Thoroughly Chewing Food: Chewing food thoroughly promotes digestion and minimizes the incidence of indigestion.
- OTC drugs: Antacids neutralize stomach acid, and medications such as H2 blockers or proton pump inhibitors help alleviate heartburn and indigestion.
- Stress Management: Relaxation activities, meditation, and yoga can all help reduce stress, which can cause indigestion.
- Weight Management: Losing excess weight can alleviate pressure on the stomach and reduce indigestion.
When To See A Doctor
In most cases, minor indigestion is no reason for concern. Seek medical attention if you have been in discomfort for longer than two weeks.
Contact your primary care physician right away if your pain is severe or accompanied by any of the following symptoms.
- Appetite loss
- Weight loss
- Tarry or black stool
- Swallowing problems
- Excessive tiredness or weakness
Immediately get medical attention if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Circulatory oxygen deficiency
- Profuse sweating
- Chest pain which may spread to other parts like the jaw, neck, or arm
- Chest discomfort that worsens over time
- Stomach feels weird
Dyspepsia (Indigestion) symptoms, if left untreated, may have a severe effect on the entire health.
This information is intended for educational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice. If you have concerns about dyspepsia or any other medical condition, please see a doctor for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment suggestions.