Acids may damage the stomach lining when the built-‐in defenses of the stomach don’t function as they should. The stomach lining can then become inflamed. When this occurs, it is called gastritis, a painful condition that has a number of causes. Gastritis and its symptoms can be relieved with treatment.
Causes of Gastritis
- Aspirin and anti-inflammatory medications
- Tobacco use
- Alcohol use
- Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) bacteria
With gastritis, you may notice one or more of the following:
- A burning feeling in your upper abdomen
- Pain that occurs after eating certain foods
- Gas or bloated feeling in your stomach
- Frequent belching
- Nausea with or without vomiting
Treatment may include medications and behavior changes.
Your doctor may prescribe some medications to neutralize or reduce excess stomach acids. If tests show that H. pylori are in your stomach lining, antibiotics may be prescribed.
- Avoid taking aspirin and other anti0inflammatory medications. They can irritate your stomach lining. Also, check with your doctor before taking or stopping any medications.
- Avoid spicy foods and caffeine. Stay away from foods prepared with spices, especially black pepper. Caffeine can also make your symptoms worse, so avoid coffee, tea, cola drinks and chocolate. Be sure to tell your doctor about any other foods or liquids that bother your stomach.
- Don’t use tobacco or drink alcohol. Tobacco and alcohol can increase stomach acids and worsen your gastritis symptoms.
- Reduce your stress, as it may make your gastritis symptoms worse. Whenever you can, reduce the stress in your life. One way to do this is to start and exercise program, but talk to your doctor first. Also, try to get enough sleep, at least 8 hours a night.