Gastrointestinal (GI) diseases are no joke. Although some people who have frequent stomachaches may not actually be experiencing true GI disease symptoms, there are a lot of Americans—60–70 million of them, in fact—that are affected by GI diseases and illnesses each year.
Our AFC Urgent Care Ballantyne center provides some helpful info about GI diseases below, so keep reading!
What Is a GI Disease?
Any problems involving the digestive system, including the throat, stomach and intestines, are referred to as GI diseases and illnesses. Acute, short-term illnesses—frequently referred to as “stomach bugs”—can be diagnosed as a GI illness, although they don’t last as long as chronic GI diseases.
GI diseases that are long-term, such as Crohn’s disease or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), typically require more speciality treatment. GI disease symptoms are often very recognizable, and we’ve listed them below.
Common GI Symptoms
- Abdominal discomfort (bloating, pain or cramps)
- Unintentional weight loss
- Vomiting and nausea
- Acid reflux (heartburn)
- Diarrhea, constipation (or sometimes both)
- Fecal incontinence
- Loss of appetite
- Difficulty swallowing
How Are GI Disorders Treated?
It depends on the GI disorder that you are dealing with. Like we said earlier, some short-term GI diseases require a certain type of treatment, while more serious, long-term GI disorders require a specialized, long-term treatment plan.
Talk to our AFC team about the symptoms you experience to get an accurate, effective treatment plan for your specific GI disease or disorder. In addition, stick to the general GI care tips that we’ve listed below.
General GI Care Tips
- Rest and drink plenty of fluids.
- Follow the BRAT diet—bananas, rice, applesauce and toast—all of which are easy on the stomach and beneficial in their own way. Additionally, avoid things like dairy, grease and spices, as they can aggravate your digestive system.
- Take over-the-counter medications to ease symptoms (for example, laxatives for constipation).
Have further questions about GI diseases and conditions? We’re here to help! Don’t hesitate to reach out to our AFC Urgent Care Ballantyne team today.