Stomach ulcers are hardly ever life-threatening. However, that does not mean you should discount the severity of a painful sore in the stomach or any other symptom associated with the illness. If you don’t manage or treat stomach ulcers, they can lead to further complications. Use these tips to manage stomach ulcer, and it’s symptoms.
Certain conditions put you at risk of developing ulcers or worsen your symptoms if you already have it. Knowing them will help you make better choices and prevent unnecessary pain later. For instance, if you know that eating fat will flare up your ulcer symptoms, you learn to avoid it and save yourself from a world of pain.
Although stress is not a likely cause of ulcers, it can worsen your ulcer by aggravating symptoms. One way to effectively manage and treat ulcers is to avoid stress. Some healthy ways to manage stress include yoga, meditation, journaling, and other forms of exercise.
Consult your doctor before taking any drugs, especially over the counter drugs. If you have illnesses that require you to take NSAIDs regularly, like headaches, you may need to explore other ways of controlling them. But if you must take NSAIDs to manage chronic illnesses, ask your doctor for meds that can counteract their effect. More importantly, always tell your healthcare provider if you have ulcers and do not self-medicate.
There are foods that you should not eat if you have ulcers because they worsen your symptoms or prevent them from healing early. Certain spices like chili pepper, black pepper, and mustard seed may worsen your symptoms. Other foods like tea, chocolate, and coffee contain caffeine, which stimulates acid production and irritates the sores. Also, switch to eating 5-6 meals daily as against a large breakfast, lunch, and dinner to lessen the effects of the stomach acids and promote healing.
As many as 75% of people with ulcers do not exhibit common symptoms like a burning pain, and the ulcer remains unnoticed until it is at an advanced stage. If you experience red or black vomit or stools, indicating the presence of blood or have intense pain in the abdomen, go to the hospital immediately. A bleeding ulcer can be treated by clipping or cauterizing the area through endoscopy. If there are multiple ulcers, have advanced to a point where they cause blockage or perforate the stomach or if they are in places that an endoscope cannot reach, it may require emergency surgery. Untreated ulcers can bleed to a life-threatening point.
Some foods are better suited to help you manage, soothe, and heal ulcers. For example, honey is an antibacterial that has polyphenols and antioxidants that inhibit the growth of H. pylori. Studies show that garlic, cranberry, and other polyphenol-rich foods like black olives and flaxseed can also help to fight bacteria and heal ulcer sores.
Probiotics help to boost the body’s immunity by increasing the supply of healthy bacteria to fight off harmful ones like H. pylori in the body. Taking more probiotics will primarily help to treat stomach ulcers. Some probiotic-rich foods include kombucha and yogurt. Also, adding more foods that nourish the growth of the gut flora will help to fight off H. pylori. Examples include olive oil, apples, blueberries, and leafy greens. You can also load up on probiotic supplements.