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How to Recognize Gastritis?

Speaking about gastritis symptoms I must say that some of them may coincide with symptoms of some other disease (you didn't think everything is so easy, did you?). That's why sitting at home and studying internet articles will give you just a prompt to the question "what disease have I got?". And the answer can be given only by a doctor.

The most frequent cause of gastritis is a dietetic indiscretion such as habitual overeating; eating of badly combined or improperly cooked foods; excessive intake of strong tea, coffee or alcoholic drinks (which are so loved by most people!); or habitual use of large quantities of condiments and sauces. Other causes include worry, anxiety, grief, and prolonged tension, use of certain drugs, strong acids, and caustic substances. You may think: at last smoking is not a cause of a disease! Well, in this case as in case with many other diseases smoking also plays its evil role. That's why don't get carried away with it!

Gastritis can occur suddenly (acute gastritis) or gradually (chronic gastritis) and its appearance becomes more often with years. There exist several types of gastritis and each type has its own symptoms, but there are some general symptoms,which you should remember. The main symptoms of all types of gastritis are loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting (possibly of blood!), headache, dizziness, pain and discomfort in the region of the stomach.

Other symptoms depend on the type of the disease. They are a coated tongue, foul breath, bad taste in the mouth, increased flow of saliva, scanty urination, a general feeling of uneasiness and even mental depression.

In more chronic cases the patient complaints of heartburn and a feeling of fullness in the abdomen, especially after meals. Often there is constipation, but occasionally there may be diarrhoea due to intestinal catarrah. However chronic gastritis may have no symptoms at all (such a devious disease!). Also indigestion (called dyspepsia), abdominal pain, hiccups, dark stools, general weakness can be the symptoms of chronic gastritis.

Acute gastritis is typically characterized by nonspecific abdominal pain, belching, bloating, fever. Since gastritis often occurs in severely ill, hospitalized people its symptoms may be eclipsed by other, more severe symptoms. There were also registered cases of lethal outcome from a sudden acute gastritis (it's not a common symptom of the disease, of course, but still).

Symptoms of Nonerosive H. pylori gastritis include abdominal pain and reduced acid secretion in the stomach. Gastritis that is caused by H. pylori eventually leads to peptic ulcers, which are characterized by a dull ache in the upper abdomen that usually occurs two to three hours after a meal (the ache is typically relieved by eating) and pain in the middle of the night when the stomach is empty. However, the majority of patients with H. pylori infection suffer no symptoms!

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Patients with erosive and hemorrhagic gastritis may also show no symptoms. When symptoms do occur, they may include anorexia nervosa, gastric pain, nausea and vomiting.

Less common forms of gastritis may result from a number of generalized diseases or from complications of chronic gastritis. Any number of mechanisms may cause various less common forms of gastritis and they may differ slightly in their symptoms and clinical signs.

If the listed above symptoms have any coincidences with yours, you should visit the doctor immediately ( no self-cure!). In conclusion I may add: watch what you're eating and how much!

AM.


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