Ulcer, Types, Causes, Symptoms And Prevention

what is ulcer 1
what is ulcer 1
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What you will learn in this article:

  • What is ulcer
  • Types
  • What is stomach ulcer
  • Causes of stomach ulcer
  • Symptoms of stomach ulcer
  • Treatment of stomach ulcer
  • Food to avoid
  • Food to eat
  • Prevention of stomach ulcer

What is peptic ulcer?

Peptic ulcers are a fairly common health problem. Peptic ulcers are sores that form in the lining of the stomach, lower esophagus, or small intestine. The bacterium responsible for peptic ulcer is called Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori).  Peptic ulcers are a fairly common health problem.

Types of ulcer

Peptic ulcers are divided into 3:

  • Gastric ulcers:This ulcer form inside the stomach
  • Esophageal ulcers: This ulcer forms inside the esophagus
  • Duodenal ulcers:This ulcer  forms in the upper section of the small intestines,  which is known as the duodenum

What is stomach or Gastric ulcer

Stomach ulcers, are painful sores that develop in the stomach lining. Stomach ulcers happen when there is a reduction of the thick layer of mucus that shields the stomach from digestive juices. This allows the digestive acids to eat away at the tissues that line the stomach, resulting to an ulcer.

What causes stomach ulcers?

Stomach ulcers are caused by one of the following:

  • Helicobacter pylori ( pylori) bacterium
  • Long-term use of aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen which are examples of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
  • Zollinger-Ellison syndrome which rarely cause stomach ulcers.

Symptoms of stomach ulcers

There are many symptoms of stomach ulcers. The most symptom of stomach ulcer is the pain in the middle abdomen or burning sensation. This pain is more severe when the stomach is empty.

Other symptoms are:

  • dull pain in the stomach
  • weight loss
  • not wanting to eat because of pain
  • nausea or vomiting
  • bloating
  • feeling easily full
  • burping or acid reflux
  • heartburn(burning sensation in the chest)
  • pain that may improve when you eat, drink, or take antacids
  • anemia (symptoms can include tiredness, shortness of breath, or paler skin)
  • dark, tarry stools
  • vomit that’s bloody or looks like coffee grounds

See your doctor if you have any of the symptoms. Stomach ulcers can become life-threatening if they aren’t treated.


Treating stomach ulcers

Ulcers can be treated based on the cause of the ulcer. If the ulcer is as a result of H. pylori, then antibiotics and drugs known as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) is used. Also probiotics (useful bacteria that may have a role in killing off H. pylori), bismuth supplement, H2 receptor blockers (drugs that also block acid production), etc are used. However, medications used in treating stomach ulcer may have side effects like:

  • nausea
  • dizziness
  • headaches
  • diarrhea
  • abdominal pain

On rare cases, the treatment of ulcer can be treated through surgical method if the ulcer is complicated. This case can be if the ulcer:

  • Hold food moving out of the stomach into the small intestine
  • Bleed
  • Don’t heal
  • Continues to return


What food to reduce its intake when you have ulcer

There is no particular food to eat when you have ulcer. However, it is advisable to reduce intake of:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Coffee and other caffeinated beverages
  • Chocolate
  • Deep fried foods
  • Carbonated beverages
  • Acidic foods like citrus and tomato
  • Red meat
  • Pepper or chilies

What Food you need to increase its intake when you have ulcer

That said, it’s possible that some foods play a role in eliminating H. pylori. Foods that may help fight off H. pylori or boost the body’s own healthy bacteria include:

There are foods that help in eliminating it (H. pylori.) they are:

  • Garlic
  • Plantain
  • Honey
  • Cranberry
  • Mastic- This is the sap of a tree grown in Mediterranean
  • Probiotics- They are good microorganisms that provide health benefits to the body and digestive tract. They are present in fermented foods (yogurt, buttermilk, kefir, miso, kimchi)
  • Flavonoids- They are also known as bioflavonoids. Flavonoids can be found naturally in fruits (apples, red grapes, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and blackberries) and vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, radishes, spinach and kale).

Prevention of stomach ulcers

Your hands should be washed properly with soap on a regular basis. Also, be sure to properly clean all of your food and to cook it thoroughly as needed.

Stop or reduce the intake of NSAIDs. Follow the recommended dosage and always take it with food and enough liquids.

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