Indigestion is a symptom of other gastrointestinal disorders especially those of the colon and small intestine. Have you ever experienced bloating, flatulence, bloated painful tummy you might be suffering from indigestion. What is indigestion? Indigestion (also known as dyspepsia) is a condition where digestion is impaired due to several factors or etiologies.
One of the most pronounced signs of indigestion is flatulence which may be an implication of acidic fermentation of undigested carbohydrates.
Indigestion may also be a sign of gastro-esophageal reflux diseases (GERDs) or gastritis characterized by severe heart burn due to escape of acid from the gastric acid into the esophageal space.
Symptoms of indigestion such as bleeding may oftentimes be a complication of ulcer which has eaten deep into the body.
The following medical conditions and risk factors can cause indigestion of foods:
1. Peptic ulcer
2. Stomach (Gastric) ulcer
3. Pregnancy (due to changes in hormone levels which fluctuates through the pregnancy)
5. Stress and anxiety
6. It could be a side-effect of certain drugs such as aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
9. Thyroid diseases
Symptoms of indigestion
Severity of indigestion symptoms depends on the underlying causes, and for how long the causes has been existing. The following are indigestion symptoms including possible complications that may arise:
1. Belching and bloating
This is a sign of gas formation within the gastric cavity. This may arise from indigestion of carbohydrates. This may be accompanied with abdominal pain and production of bad breath. Bloating after meals is also an extension of indigestion and or complication of the underlying cause.
2. Heart burn
Another instance of indigestion symptoms is heart burn is a symptom of gastric acid backflow into the esophageal space. While it passes through the esophagus, it causes a burning sensation which. This may present as a myriad of symptoms such as radiating chest pain, choking, in advance cases, a hiatus may be produced in the diaphragm which makes hernia possible only in complicated cases.
3. Abdominal fullness
This may be experienced as fullness inside the abdomen, especially after a meal.
4. Nausea and vomiting
Indigestion coupled with acid reflux may cause vomit of foods which are yet to be processed by the small intestine.
5. Distress and anxiety disorders
This may be seen in patients who has a prolonged indigestion problems. Severe fatigue or distress may result from inadequate digestion and glucose metabolism.
6. Acidic taste in the mouth
This can be traced to acids that escaped through the esophagus into the mouth. Cases like this may be caused by esophageal hiatus. This is one of the indirect symptoms of indigestion in that it is a complication of GERDs and/or ulcer.
7. Abdominal pain
This may be caused by prolonged flatulence i.e. gas accumulation within the belly which may cause abdominal distention and abdominal pain in return. This pain may radiate to the back.
Indigestion symptoms can be alleviated when you report early to your doctor as several tests might have to be conducted to check the progress of any underlying causes. Blood culture tests may be ordered for to see if there is helicobacter pylori mediated peptic ulcer, so also a complete history of diet and medications taken in the past may help in making positive diagnosis.