Peptic ulcers are an open sore or erosion on the surface of a tissue or an organ. The most apparent symptom of peptic ulcer is stomach aches. The three types of ulcers include duodenal, esophageal and gastric ulcers. Gastric ulcers occur within the stomach, duodenal ulcers occur in the upper portion of the small intestine and an esophageal ulcer develops in the lower part of the esophagus.
Peptic ulcers are experienced when the inner surface of the small intestine or stomach is eroded by the acid found in the digestive tract. This can lead to an open sore which bleeds and can be quite painful. The digestive tract is covered with a protective coating of a mucous layer which prevents the acid from causing harm. Once the level of mucus reduces or the number of acid increases, it can lead to the development of an ulcer.
Ulcers can occur due to the following reasons:
- Pain Killers: Excess intake of pain relievers such as aspirin or the consumption of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can inflame or irritate the small intestine as well as your stomach lining. The occurrence of peptic ulcers is most common among adults on frequent pain medications, specifically osteoarthritis patients who take these medicines.
- A Bacterium: The Helicobacter pylori bacteria (H. pylori) usually does not cause any issues, but it can sometimes cause inflammation in the inner layer of the stomach which leads to an ulcer. H. pylori is found in the mucous layer which coats tissues that protect the small intestine and stomach. It can spread through water, food or close contact with an infected person.
- Medications: The consumption of alendronate, anticoagulants, risedronate, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, steroids and low-dose aspirin in combination with NSAIDs can expose you at high risk of developing an ulcer.
Further Risk Factors to Consider
- Alcohol: Drinking can heighten the production of stomach acid which can lead to the erosion of mucous thereby making the stomach lining vulnerable.
- Spicy Foods: Though spicy foods do not cause ulcer. it can irritate existing ulcers. Avoid spicy foods with acid reflux to ward off this ailment.
- Too much stress: Since stress increases the stimulation of stomach acid, ulcers are common among people who are under immense physical stress, such as stress caused by a serious infection or injury.
- Smoking: Smokers exposed to H. pylori are at direct risk of developing peptic ulcers.
Complications if Left Untreated
- Blocked Passages: Since peptic ulcers obstruct the passage of food going through the digestive tract it can cause you to feel full much faster which leads to frequent vomiting thereby causing you to lose weight.
- Internal Bleeding: Bleeding can lead to severe blood loss which requires a blood transfusion, hospitalization and can even cause anemia due to steady blood loss. In dire cases, patients may experience bloody or black stools and vomits.
- Risk of Infections: Since peptic ulcers diminish the stomach and small intestine wall it can put you at risk of developing severe infections of the peritonitis, that is the abdominal cavity.
Ulcer symptoms include burning stomach pains which are worsened due to the presence of stomach acid or having an empty stomach. You can ease the pain by eating acid-reducing medication or by eating foods which reduce stomach acid. It is vital to note ulcer pain usually worsens at nighttime and in between meals which is why instead of eating just three big meals you should try taking several small meals throughout the day.
Common Symptoms Include:
- Bloating and belching
- Fatty food intolerance
- Feeling full
- Burning stomach ache
Less common severe symptoms of peptic ulcer include:
- Changes in appetite
- Faint feeling
- Trouble breathing
- Stools that appear black, tarry or have blood
- Weight loss due to no apparent reason
When to see a Professional?
Ulcers can be excruciatingly painful and can take a toll on your health. If you are suffering from one or more symptoms, see your doctor right away. If over-the-counter acid blockers and antacids help ease the pain, but it reoccurs then head to the doctor right away. Consult your physician if you are eligible for taking EsNovex capsules. These esomeprazole capsules fortify the stomach lining and ease symptoms of an ulcer. Our best supplement for ulcers works by reducing gastric acid secretion through inhibition of H+/K+-ATPase in gastric parietal cells. By hindering the function of this enzyme this supplement prevents the formation of gastric acid.
Simple Yet Effective Home Remedies to Try
Leucocyanidin found in bananas generates mucus production in the body which is vital for fortifying the barrier between digestive acids and stomach wall. It also contains antibacterial substances which are ideal for inhibiting the growth of H. pylori. In 2013, a study published in Pharmacognosy Research it was suggested by researchers that the anti-ulcer effects of bananas might be owing to its cytoprotective and antisecretory activities. It was also discovered the ulcer base might be interlinked with the basic fibroblast growth attributes responsible for epithelial regeneration specifically for acid-induced ulcers.
Cranberries avert bacteria from growing and sticking to the urinary bladder walls. This makes cranberries potent for reducing the risks of developing bladder infections that can also lead to the formation of an ulcer. Additionally, Proanthocyanidins found in this berry wards off the growth of H. pylori in the lining of the stomach. Herbion Naturals Cranfit, best cranberry supplement is excellent for warding off stomach ulcers caused by H. pylori, since it exhibits anti-adhesive activity which enables it to flush out bacteria. Ourcranberry herbal supplements come in a box of 10 sachets. Dissolve one cranberry sachet in a glass of water and drink. You may use maximum two sachets in a day or as prescribed by your health physician.
This popular ulcer remedy contains high amounts of vitamin C which is known for antioxidant compounds that ward off H. pylori. The antipeptic ulcer properties of cabbage make it a vital treatment for this ailment. Rich in soothing properties cabbage juice provides quick relief for gastric ulcers. In a study conducted in 1949 published by the Western Journal of Medicine thirteen participants suffering from peptic ulcers were monitored gastroscopically and radiologically to reveal accelerated healing by drinking fresh cabbage juice. Furthermore, since cabbage is a lactic acid food, it aids the stimulation of amino acid which generates blood flow to the stomach lining thereby enhancing the healing process.
Bioflavonoids are loaded with anti-ulcer attributes which are ideal for treating gastric ulcers. The nutrients present in it are gastro-protective which make them potent for treating sores along the lining of the stomach. Sources of flavonoids include apples, berries, broccoli, green tea, kale, red grapes and soybean.
In a study conducted in 2016 and published in Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine researchers found probiotics essential for the prevention and gastric ulcer treatment. Probiotics are loaded with parasites and bacteria namely Cyanobacteria and Nostoc which are microorganisms’ indispensable for the digestive tract. It decreases the chances of H. pylori bacteria from spreading in the stomach lining. Fulfill your probiotic intake by consuming buttermilk, kimchi, kefir, miso and yogurt.
This golden syrup is ideal for numerous ailments including ulcer. The anti-bacterial compounds found in honey are potent for preventing stomach sores and ulcers while escalating the healing process simultaneously. The complex composition of honey suffocates the survival of bacteria which makes it vital for eliminating H. Pylori bacteria. Furthermore, raw honey also contains hydrogen peroxide which eliminates ulcer-causing bacteria. The efficacy of honey in reducing the growth of bacteria was discovered in 2006 in vitro study published by Sultan Qaboos University Medical Journal. In yet another study conducted in 2013 published in the Iran Journal of Basic Medical Sciences the potency of honey for gastrointestinal infections namely gastritis, duodenitis and gastric ulceration was recorded.