We all have tummy troubles from time to time, but some stomach and abdominal issues are worse than others. In fact, if you experience certain symptoms, you could be dealing with a type of gastrointestinal (GI) disease.
Most GI diseases are highly treatable, and our AFC Urgent Care Indian Trail team shares more helpful info about them below.
What Are Gastrointestinal Diseases?
Gastrointestinal diseases affect the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, which runs from the mouth to the anus. There are two types of GI diseases: structural and functional. Structural GI diseases are those where your bowel looks abnormal upon examination and doesn’t work properly, like colon cancer, IBD and colon polyps.
Functional GI diseases are those in which the GI tract looks normal when examined but doesn’t work properly. They are the most common type of GI disease, and they include examples such as constipation, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), GERD and diarrhea. We’ve listed the most common symptoms of GI problems 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
Are GI Diseases Treatable?
In general, each GI disease will need to be treated in a different way. While most gastrointestinal infections and diseases are treatable, you’ll need to consult our AFC center to find out what type of treatment will prove most effective for your specific GI issue.
No matter the type of GI problems you are dealing with, the habits that we’ve listed below will help you feel better.
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).
Feeling rough? We can help you feel better! Don’t hesitate to visit our AFC Urgent Care Indian Trail team today.