Gastritis: what it is, how are your symptoms and your treatment

Medically known by the name of gastritis , we are without any doubt before one of the Digestive diseases More common, which precisely more tends to affect the health of our stomach. We must differentiate it from the gastritis nervosa , which basically consists of inflammation of the lining of the stomach by nerves.

The truth is that knowing the symptoms that appear when we have gastritis can be very useful when it comes to helping with their diagnosis, especially to apply a quick and effective medical treatment. However, the diagnosis - as we shall see - is not only based on clinical symptoms, but also on the use of certain tools, such as the endoscope.


What is gastritis?

The gastritis consists basically of the inflammation of the lining of the stomach , more specifically the gastric mucosa , which is the layer of different cells that lines our stomach inside, and that acts as an important protector of the acidity of the different gastric juices.

It is very usual to use the term dyspepsia as a synonym, but in reality it is a mistake. That is to say, it is not correct to identify gastritis and dyspepsia as the same pathology, since dyspepsia consists of a pain that is located in the upper abdomen and accompanied by symptoms such as pressure, fullness and burning, but it is an illness not due to inflammation of the stomach.

Their Causes they are really very varied, as we will see later: it may be generated by the bad eating habits , stress, anxiety, abuse of certain medications or more frequent by the appearance of Helicobacter pylori .

Causes of gastritis

As we mentioned before, in fact there are many causes that can directly influence the swelling and inflammation of the lining of the stomach, and therefore be a cause of gastritis. We summarize below the most common and usual:

  • Certain habits: Especially for an excessive consumption of alcohol.
  • Consumption of medications: Certain medications, consumed regularly and lengthened in time, can inflame the stomach. The most common are aspirin and other anti-inflammatory medications.
  • Infections: Especially for the bacterium H. Pilory, a bacterium that lives in the mucous lining of our stomach. Without medical treatment can cause not only gastritis, but also ulcers and in severe cases stomach cancer. Gastritis can also be caused by other bacteria or viruses, such as cytomegalovirus or herpes simplex virus.
  • Pernicious anemia: It is a type of anemia that occurs when the intestines are not able to absorb vitamin B12 properly.
  • Reflux: In case of bile reflux, which consists of a reverse flow of bile into the stomach, which then reaches the liver and gallbladder.

Causes of gastritis

Symptoms of gastritis

We must bear in mind that the symptoms of gastritis tend to be very variable . This means that, in reality, a person may have different symptoms compared to another individual, and yet both may be having symptoms related to gastritis.

However, we can establish a series of relatively frequent symptoms and signals:

  • Abdominal pain, especially in the stomach.
  • Gases or flatulence.
  • Upset stomach in general.
  • Heartburn.
  • Nausea and vomiting with the possibility of blood (both in the vomit and in the stool).

Said disease of digestive system can be controlled by taking antacids and other types of medicines to decrease acid, gases and stomach upset, you also have to follow a soft diet composed of certain foods that prevent stomach heaviness and help to be a good and complete digestion .

How is it diagnosed?

The best techniques to diagnose this disease so common among people, are medical check-ups and subsequent blood or stool tests and even an endoscopy, whose procedure is to introduce an endoscope through the mouth and esophagus equipped with a camera to be able to see the state in which the stomach is located and afterwards, the complete state of the aforementioned inflammation will be assessed.

In any case, the most common is the realization of a gastroscopy , which consists of a high digestive endoscopy, carried out by a flexible tube (endoscope) of around more than 100 centimeters long and 1 centimeter in diameter, which is introduced through the mouth and is made little by little advance through the upper intestine.

This endoscope provides the possibility for the doctor to visualize the stomach and the interior of the intestine. In addition, it is also very useful to collect samples for further analysis.

Types of gastritis

Depending on whether the gastritis has a short or long duration we will find ourselves before a type of acute or chronic gastritis. Everything will depend on the period of evolution of the specific condition.

Acute gastritis

Acute gastritis is inflammation and sudden swelling of the lining that lines the stomach . It has a rather short duration, and therefore its symptoms tend to be more evident than with chronic gastritis.

The most common symptoms are indigestion and poor digestion, lack of appetite and fatigue, nausea and vomiting (also with blood), as well as black stools.

It can be caused by excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages, certain medications (especially aspirin, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids), nervous tensions and stress (we are here before emotional gastritis), consumption of corrosive substances, and infections.

Symptoms of gastritis

Chronic gastritis

The chronic gastritis is a type of gastritis that occurs when the inflammation of the lining of the stomach occurs gradually, and above all, tends to persist and last for a long time . It is common for acute gastritis to become chronic when it does not receive adequate medical treatment.

Its symptoms are somewhat different from those produced by acute gastritis, although there are symptoms in common: abdominal pain that is located in the upper part and that is felt especially when eating, indigestion, loss of appetite, dark stools, nausea and vomiting with blood .

Its causes may be related to the prolonged use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, chronic bile reflux, degeneration of the stomach lining proper of age, pernicious anemia or Helicobacter pylori infection.

Gastritis treatment

Medical treatment

It is very common for gastritis to be medically treated with antacids , which are medicines and drugs that are especially useful for decrease acidity in the stomach , relieve symptoms and thus favor the healing of the irritation of the lining of the stomach.

However, when gastritis is caused by an infection (such as, for example, it could be the case gastritis by Helicobacter Pylori ), it is best to treat the infection until it is eradicated.

Foods and meals that can help treat gastritis

There are a number of foods that can be very useful when it comes to treat and relieve symptoms related to gastritis. In fact, it is advisable to carry out certain changes in our diet. The most suitable foods are the following:

  • Vegetables.
  • Rice.
  • Soup.
  • Fish.
  • Meat.
  • Ham.
  • Soy milk or rice.
  • fruit
  • And especially to drink a lot of water.

You can also opt for wonderful desserts such as the case of roasted apple , an ideal option to cure the stomach to be tremendously soft and nutritious.

What foods should we avoid

Of course, in contrast those foods that irritate the stomach wall should be avoided . The following foods are common:

  • Cookies or very greasy sweets.
  • Cheese.
  • Chocolates
  • Milk.
  • Coffee.

As we see, gastritis can be cured especially when it is in the acute stage, it is very important to apply a proper medical treatment quickly to prevent it from becoming chronic.

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