Ways To Help Reduce Stress And Stomach Pain
According to a poll that tracks negative experiences of people in 115 countries, 2020 was the year the world reached its highest stress peak in over 15 years. Around 40% of the surveyed population reported experiencing significant stress.
While you should see a doctor if your stomach pain is severe, prolonged, or recurring, there are things you can do to calm a nervous stomach and help reduce the kind of stress and anxiety that could lead to stomach problems.
Functional Abdominal Pain And Bloating
Functional abdominal pain is a separate entity. It is a type of non-specific abdominal pain that comes and goes in waves.
Functional abdominal pain is also related to anxiety and psychological morbidity.
How functional abdominal pain feels like :
- Episodic or continuous abdominal pain that does not occur solely during physiological events such as eating and menses
- Insufficient criteria for other functional GI disorders, including irritable bowel syndrome, functional dyspepsia, or abdominal migraine
- After appropriate evaluation, the abdominal pain cannot be fully explained by another medical condition.
Functional abdominal bloating is the feeling of an inflated balloon inside your abdomen. Bloating is very common with other functional diseases such as IBS.
Bloating probably reflects a state of hypersensitivity of your gut. Bloating is a widespread complaint. About 10-30% of people experience bloating.
Organic bloating can be due to diseases such as food intolerance. On the other hand, Functional abdominal bloating occurs without organic causes.
Functional bloating is related to psychological stress and anxiety .
What Helps Anxiety In The Stomach
Anxiety is an emotion that can make people feel unease, nervousness, and uncertainty. It can strike at any time and last for as long as it takes for the body and mind to return to normal. For some people, anxiety can be a chronic feeling. For others, it can come in waves.
For some people the cause of their anxiety will be obvious but for others, it may be more of a mystery.
Wherever it comes from and whatever the cause, anxiety can have a big impact on your life some people with anxiety experience it as a sense of dread while others feel overwhelming worry or nervousness. For many people with anxiety, it manifests itself physically in stomachaches or headaches.
Others feel despair and hopelessness which often leads to depression. Many people with anxiety also feel the need to take more and more medication even if it is not helping their symptoms this is known as self-medicating with drugs or alcohol which only worsens the problem since drugs are addictive substances.
Anxiety is more than just a feeling its an emotional response to a problem. If youre looking for more information about anxiety read on for a deeper look at what anxiety is, how it affects your life, and how you can get help if you need it.
You May Like: Is Anxiety Disorder A Disability
Should I Be Getting Screened Regularly For Colon Cancer Or Other Gi Tract Cancers
As of 2021, the United States Preventative Services Task Force and major GI medical societies recommend that adults at average risk for colorectal cancer are regularly screened beginning at age 45.
People who have a family history of colorectal cancer or other GI tract cancers, including stomach or pancreas cancer, or a history of GI conditions like inflammatory bowel disease may need routine cancer screening earlier than age 45.
Talk your primary care physician about your risk and ask if you should get tested.
Can Stress And Anxiety Cause Stomach Ulcers
There is still some debate over this in the medical community, but there is evidence to suggest chronic stress and anxiety can result in imbalances in hormone levels that can increase the acidity of your stomach. This increase in stomach acid can eventually lead to ulcerations in the lining of your stomach and duodenum.
Stress and anxiety have also been linked to sleep disorders, which can further wear your body down and make it harder for tissues to repair themselves, further wearing away at your stomach lining.
Binge Drinking Causes Acid
Moderate drinking will not hurt your digestive system, but binge drinking increases acid production in your stomach, and can cause heartburn and aggravate other digestive disorders.
Binge drinking is defined as drinking 8 or more units of alcohol in 1 session for men, and drinking more than 6 units in 1 session for women.
Can Anxiety Cause Diaphragm Spasms
Anxiety can also cause muscle spasms. The most common reasons for spasms include: Muscle Tension Anxiety causes a considerable amount of muscle tension, and muscle tension can lead to both cramping and spasms. Muscle tension is a lot like exercise it tires out the muscles and causes them to spasm as a result.
Recommended Reading: How To Use Feliway Spray For Anxiety
Can Anxiety Cause High Blood Pressure
No, but it can cause a temporary spike in your blood pressure.
High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is a condition in which your blood pressure is chronically higher than it should be. This places extra force on the walls of your blood vessels and, over time, can lead to several health conditions, including:
- Heart attack
- Metabolic disease
General anxiety can cause a temporary, significant increase in your blood pressure, but the effects typically dont linger long enough to have a lasting impact on your health or cause long-term high blood pressure.
However, if you regularly experience blood pressure spikes due to chronic anxiety issues, your blood vessels can be affected in ways similar to high blood pressure.
Dont Miss: Why Does The Left Side Of My Stomach Hurt
What Is Samhsas National Helpline
SAMHSAs National Helpline, , or TTY: is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations. Callers can also order free publications and other information.
Also visit the online treatment locators.
Read Also: How To Get Anxiety Out Of Your Body
Pain Of Depression: Physical Symptoms Of Depression
Depression is a mental illness known as a mood disorder, so some people think the only effects of depression are on mood. This, however, is not the case. Depression is linked to many physical symptoms including insomnia, lack of energy and loss of interest in sex. Physical pain from depression is also widely recognized with up to half of all people with depression reporting physical pain. In a study of 25,000 patients, 50% of depressed patients reported unexplained, physical symptoms of depression.1
The physical pain of depression should be a major concern for doctors, as continuing pain reduces the chances for a successful recovery from depression and increases the possible risk of suicide.
Does Anxiety Feel Like Butterflies In Your Stomach
When you have anxiety and stress, you can experience knots in your stomach, nausea, vomiting, and a rapid heartbeat. If youve experienced these symptoms before, you know what it feels like.
But why do I feel anxiety in my stomach? Your body can have many different reactions to stress and anxiety. Anxiety can make your body release adrenaline, which increases your heart rate and blood pressure.
It also makes you breathe faster than normal. Stress and anxiety can also decrease the amount of digestive acids in your stomach, making you feel nauseous or throw up. It sounds so simple but there are steps you can take to prevent this from happening again.
You may need some time to build your confidence back up after experiencing a particularly stressful event or situation. But there are also ways for you to manage stress and prevent it from causing serious problems for you in the future.
Recommended Reading: What Can I Take For Anxiety While Pregnant
How Are Ulcers Diagnosed
Blood tests and even breath tests for H. pylori infections can give your doctor a clue as to what is going on inside you, but to be sure nothing is missed in a diagnosis, a visual inspection is essential. Getting a look inside is typically done during an endoscopy, a procedure where a long, thin, flexible tube with a camera on the end is inserted through your mouth and down your esophagus. This camera allows your doctor to inspect the lining of your stomach and the upper portion of your small intestine. In some cases, the endoscope can be fitted with tools to retrieve tissue samples to check for stomach cancer.
Anytime you experience prolonged gastrointestinal bleeding, you should seek medical attention immediately. Many other gastrointestinal conditions, including stomach and colon cancer, can cause blood to appear in your stool or in vomit. Other serious conditions such as Crohns disease can mimic many of the symptoms of ulcers, which makes getting a firm diagnosis from a gastroenterologist crucial to ensuring you are treating the underlying condition and not merely managing symptoms.
You May Like: What Are The Three Stages Of Schizophrenia
So What Is Causing My Neck Pain
We know stress and anxiety can cause muscle tension in the upper body, leading to neck pain. But conditions of the spine can lead to pressure on nerves. The pressure can iritate the nerves and send excessive signals to other areas of the body. So, a disc or vertebrae issue in the neck can send signals to muscles in the shoulders and upper back. This can cause muscle spasms. Over time, the muscles can become fatigued and painful.
What does this all tell us? Yes, anxiety can cause muscle tension and neck pain. But, neck and muscle pain in the upper back and shoulder area can also be caused by a problem in the cervical spine. So, what should you do? Exercise is helpful for both spinal conditions and stress. Walking and neck stretches are a great way to start trying to relieve your neck pain. There are plenty of gentle exercises and strengthening neck exercises you can try at home. If your pain continues, it may be time to consult with a doctor for your neck pain. The doctors at Saratoga Spine are ready to help diagnose and treat your condition. Contact us if youre ready to schedule an appointment.
Don’t Miss: How To Test For Anxiety
Behavioral Responses To Anxiety
A similar and related problem has to do with your own behavioral responses to your anxiety, aches and pains. For example, perhaps your anxiety has caused you to feel fatigue or low energy, and you spend a great deal of time slouching in your chair. That behavioral response will increase the likelihood of creating lower back pain, because slouching can lead to this type of discomfort.
Muscle tension can create similar problems. If you have muscle tension within your shoulder, you may lift objects in a manner your body isnt accustomed to, and this can cause you to create pain in your lower back. This is just one of many examples of how aches and pains may be the result of how you respond to your symptoms.
Rash Caused By Stress
A rash is a change of the human skin which affects its color, appearance, or texture, A rash may be localized in one part of the body, or affect all the skin. Rashes may cause the skin to change color, itch, become warm, bumpy, chapped, dry, cracked or blistered, swell, and may be painful.The causes, and therefore treatments for rashes, vary widely.
Can Anxiety Cause Weird Body Sensations
Anxiety makes your body to start preparing for danger. This preparation can cause many sensations in our bodies and our bodies react to the stress. Some people might have an increased heart rate, sweaty palms, nausea or even a headache. These symptoms are all related to anxiety and how it can make you feel physically uncomfortable.
Why Is Anxiety Felt In The Stomach
When you are anxious or stressed, there are hormones and neurotransmitters that are released in your body. The chemicals have an effect on gut motility. Gut motility is the way the GIT pushes food from one section of the gut to the next and also pushes excreta from the body.
When anxious, gut motility is greatly impacted causing stomach anxiety. There are many causes of anxiety, and one of the most common is chronic stress. When we experience a stressful event, its normal for our bodies to release hormones like cortisol, which help us escape or avoid the situation.
But if we continue experiencing stressful events on a regular basis, this becomes less effective because the body doesnt release enough cortisol. This can cause our gut motility to be negatively impacted, which can make people feel more anxious than they would if they werent stressed. Its also worth noting that stress may also lower stomach acid levels, which can lead to feelings of unease in the stomach.
You May Like: Can Anxiety Make You Nauseous
Beat Stress To Ease Tummy Troubles
You may have noticed a feeling of unease in your stomach during times of stress. That’s because anxiety and worry can upset the delicate balance of digestion.
In some people, stress slows down digestion, causing bloating, pain and constipation, while in others it speeds it up, causing diarrhoea and frequent trips to the loo. Some people lose their appetite completely.
A solution is to avoid eating when you’re feeling very anxious, stressed or unhappy.
It also helps your digestion if you avoid arguing at the dinner table, as getting angry can put you off your food or make eating harder. Try to keep mealtimes happy and relaxed.
Find Space For Yourself To Relax
Ultimately, find time and space for yourself to clear your head and take control of your nervousness, even if it must be total alone time. Dont be afraid to excuse yourself, even from an important event.
If talking to a friend, family member, or loved one helps, do so during this time. Talking with someone you trust can help you overcome anxiety.
Recommended Reading: How To Deal With Anger And Anxiety
Back Pain Or Aching Muscles All Over
You might feel okay in the morning, but once youre at work or sitting at a school desk, your back starts to hurt. It could be stress, or it could be depression. Although theyre often associated with bad posture or injuries, backaches can also be a symptom of psychological distress.
A 2017 research study of 1,013 Canadian university students found a direct association between depression and backaches.
Psychologists and psychiatrists have long believed emotional issues can cause chronic aches and pains, but the specifics are still being researched, such as the connection between depression and the bodys inflammatory response.
You May Like: Does Anxiety Cause Irregular Heartbeat