How To Tell If You Have Gastritis
Gastritis is an inflammation of the stomach lining or mucosa. The inflammation may be caused by viral infection, alcohol, smoking, certain drugs, poisoned food, or stress. There are many forms of gastritis. Erosive gastritis can lead to significant bleeding of the stomach and ulcerations. Gastritis may be acute or chronic.
It can occur with any major physical stress such as severe illness, surgery or burns, and therefore is referred to as stress-induced gastritis. Medications that are well-known stomach irritants can contribute to gastritis. These include aspirin, nonsteroidal agents such as ibuprofen and pancreatic enzymes. Excessive alcohol ingestion can also cause gastritis and erosions. This is all the more reason to avoid over consumption of alcohol, and seek help if necessary. Sites like alcohol-rehab-nj.com can provide useful advice.
Acute gastritis causes vomiting, hairy tongue, thirst, severe stomach pain, and mild fever. Dehydration may occur. Chronic gastritis usually produces few symptoms, although in some cases a person may experience one or more of the following discomforts: mild indigestion; slight nausea; a bloated feeling after a small meal; a bad taste in the mouth; and vague stomach pain.
Acute gastritis improves of its own accord if the precipitating factor or factors are eliminated. Antacid preparations and/or histamine blockers and antinauseant drugs such as Mylanta or Maalox, and Tylenol; don't use Aspirin, are often prescribed. Don't eat solid foods on the first day of the attack, give your stomach a rest and drink liquids only, milk or water are preferred. Add bland foods to your diet slowly and as tolerated (cooked cereals, bananas, rice, potatoes, toast) and avoid greasy, spicy foods.
Chronic gastritis can be treated only by eliminating the causative factor, for example, alcohol, smoking, or highly spiced or other foods that are difficult to digest. Antacid drugs are recommended for the treatment of chronic gastritis.
The classification of gastritis can depend on the region or function, predominantly involved. Gastric atrophy is a condition which is typically characterised by loss of function, namely reduced acid and intrinsic factor secretion. The combination of changes in the mucosa and the greater risk of bacterial colonisation in the stomach from the low acidity both give rise to gastritis, often with Helicobacter colonisation and an increased risk of carcinoma. Lack of production of intrinsic factor can give rise to pernicious anaemia from decreased Vitamin B12 absorption, giving a macrocytic (megaloblastic) anaemia.