Indigestion is a rather common ailment. Sporadic indigestion is something most people experience in one way or another. The stomach often has a difficult time accepting certain trigger foods or being overstuffed, so it is not uncommon for most people to notice when they have eaten too much or hit the spice rack a little heavily.
Constant or daily indigestion is another story. Usually this is indicative of a highly sensitive system or it is the body's way of indicating that there is a more serious problem. Relieving the symptoms are definitely one of the priorities, but if you experience indigestion 3 or more times per week you may wish to visit your physician to have a thorough analysis of the problem completed.
Children and Indigestion
It should be noted that it is highly unusual for children to experience indigestion. While they may feel particularly full or even have a "tight tummy," a young child complaining of discomfort after eating several days per week should definitely be evaluated by a physician. In most cases a child's body is just more likely to expel the excess food and then respond by feeling much better.
It is not recommended that parents or caregivers try to alleviate indigestion in children through the same methods that they would use with adults. Medical attention is the best course of action.
What Causes Indigestion?
There are a variety of causes for basic indigestion. They way food is prepared or eaten if often the main cause. Preparing food is often based on taste rather than the digestive process. This can easily lead to an over exuberance when it comes to spices. Over spicing food will increase the production of bile and can cause a discomforting sensation down the throat. In some cases the best tip to get rid of indigestion is to lay off the spices and go for a more bland diet.
The way you eat your food could be causing you to feel ill after a meal as well. Hurried eating leads to a lack of proper chewing. Not chewing your food well and then filling the stomach generally causes the stomach to bloat. The signal from your stomach to your brain regarding its level of hunger is not instantaneous. This is because that signal is triggered by hormones, not the level of food in your stomach.
A small amount of digestion has to occur before the hormones that level off blood sugar are created from the pancreas. If you are eating too quickly you are not giving your body a chance to really respond to the food you've already put in and thus you are encouraging an overfilled stomach that has to increase the production of bile.
Other Health Issues Commonly Overlooked
Some of the health issues that produce indigestion are commonly overlooked. Tooth decay is actually a relatively common cause of feeling ill after a meal. When there is excessive decay or an infection in the mouth, not only is food often not properly chewed but there is also a certain amount of blood, pus, or infectious material that can enter the stomach. The stomach does not digest these materials well and can cause that sickly feeling after eating.
Chronic anxiety often leads to an increase in bile production as well. An overly anxious individual will often get an upset stomach even when their stomach is empty. The perpetual rise in digestive chemicals can cause long term irritation that can lead to damage.
Constipation brought on by medications, stress, and other causes can also be problematic. The body is designed to empty the waste product before taking in additional food. Without regular and thorough bowel movements the entire digestive system slows down. This leads to problems with the proper production of digestive chemicals and can certainly cause problems in an individual that typically doesn't have indigestion.
It's also important to look at the drinks you're consuming. Caffeine laden drinks often cause irritation to the stomach. Excessive coffee is actually one of the more common causes.
Tips to Get Rid of Indigestion
Naturally, you will want to get rid of indigestion as quickly as possible. You might consider using an over the counter product. While these can certainly help improve your level of comfort, they are also not going to address the problem. These over the counter medications are not intended for long term use and addressing the root cause is essential to avoiding the post meal distress.
Drinking water can be a great way to leave indigestion behind. Using small sips instead of big gulps you can often find that water is able to help flush the system and relieve the symptoms. Sipping water throughout the day might be your key to avoiding the indigestion altogether, especially if it is caused by constipation.
Avoid kicking back and relaxing, especially after a big meal. Try a brief but reasonably paced walk around the block right after a meal instead. Lying down within the first 2 hours after eating can cause more discomfort. Walking can help facilitate healthier digestion and it can easily calm a stomach on the verge or over producing digestive chemicals.
Tight clothing can increase the heartburn associated with indigestion. Any tight clothing that is around the mid section will often thwart your stomach's natural movement and the ease of digestion you're looking for. Use this as an opportunity to get into some comfortable clothing before a meal.
Avoiding indigestion altogether is really preferable to treating it once it happens. Give your body every chance to develop a natural digestive process without the aid of chemicals or medications. Start by watching the spices, chewing slowly, drinking water, and limiting your caffeine intake. If you have a specific problem such as constipation brought about by a new medication talk to your doctor about finding relief through natural means if possible. Try to instill as many good habits and limit your unhealthy habits in order to help increase natural digestive rhythms. If you find that you are still having issues, it might be time to investigate other options.
When Indigestion Won't Respond to Treatment
There are some prescription medications that can help alleviate indigestion that is persistent and chronic. Yet there are also certain illnesses and diseases that warrant looking into before you and your physician treat just the symptoms. Ulcers of the stomach, appendicitis, stomach cancer, and pancreatic cancer can show up under the guise of indigestion. Persistent indigestion that doesn't respond to natural changes might just be a stubborn case of an upset stomach, but if you're finding that the frequency and origin of the stomach problems are not helped only medical testing can tell you for sure.