Specific Health Concern >> Digestive Problems
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In this video, Dr. Huntoon discusses digestive issues, the underlying cause of these concerns and what you need to know if you are going to overcome yours.
Digestive Concerns are a source of many destroyed lives. Do not let your condition control your life. Give us a call and we will help you.
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Common digestive symptoms include:
Abdominal swelling, bloating or distention
Burning in the throat
Gas and flatulence
What other symptoms might occur with digestive symptoms?
Digestive symptoms may be accompanied by symptoms in other body systems depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Symptoms can result from gastrointestinal or digestive conditions or from problems of other body systems. Problems with the endocrine system, the nervous system, the reproductive system, or the urinary system can all lead to digestive problems. Since the problem may not be with the digestive system at all, treatments focusing on it will prove ineffective in curing the underlying cause of your symptoms.
Other symptoms that may occur along with digestive symptoms include:
Chest pain or pressure
Easy bleeding or bruising
Flu-like symptoms (fatigue, fever, sore throat, headache, cough, aches and pains)
Jaundice (yellowing of skin and eyes)
Referred shoulder pain
Weakness (loss of strength)
Weight loss, malabsorption, and vitamin deficiencies
Serious symptoms that might indicate a life-threatening condition
In some cases, digestive symptoms may occur with other symptoms that might indicate a serious or life-threatening condition. If you experience these symptoms along with digestive problems you should immediately seek emergency medical attention. If you, or someone you are with, is experiencing any of these symptoms Seek immediate medical care (call 911):
A change in level of consciousness or alertness, such as passing out, or becoming unresponsive
High fever (A fever higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit)
Respiratory or breathing problems, such as shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, labored breathing, wheezing, not breathing, or choking
Severe abdominal pain
Vomiting blood, major rectal bleeding or bloody stool
Yellow skin and eyes (jaundice)
Pulsating mass inside the abdomen
Digestive symptoms have many possible underlying causes. General conditions that can cause digestive symptoms include:
infection (bacterial, viral, parasitic)
other abnormal processes.
The most common underlying cause for digestive symptoms is the ingestion of antibiotics. Antibiotics are often prescribed as a result of medical treatment to fight infection, or as a preventative such as before seeing a Dentist.
Antibiotics can also be ingested by eating common meat products such as beef, chicken, eggs and fish. These animals are often treated with or fed antibiotics to keep them healthy before harvesting. These antibiotics can then remain in the meat which, upon consumption, can lead to digestive problems. For this reason organic, grass fed, or free-range sources of meat are preferred.
Gastrointestinal causes of digestive symptoms
Celiac disease (severe sensitivity to gluten from wheat and other grains that causes intestinal damage)
Colorectal cancer, gastric cancer, and pancreatic cancer
Diverticulitis and diverticulosis
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Inflammatory bowel disease (includes Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis)
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS; digestive discomfort that does not cause intestinal damage or serious disease)
Lactose intolerance and other food intolerances
Liver disease (hepatitis, cirrhosis, liver failure)
Other causes of digestive symptoms include:
Exposure to smoke or toxic fumes or substances
Kidney disease (kidney stone, kidney failure, pyelonephritis)
Medication side effects
Narcotic use or withdrawal
Pregnancy and labor
Stress or anxiety
Type 1 or type 2 diabetes
Life-threatening causes of digestive swelling
In some cases, digestive symptoms may accompany a serious or life-threatening condition that should be immediately evaluated in an emergency setting. These include:
Acute pyelonephritis (kidney infection)
Bleeding esophageal varices
Bleeding peptic ulcer
Diabetic ketoacidosis (serious complication of diabetes)
Dissecting abdominal aortic aneurysm
Peritonitis (infection of the lining that surrounds the abdomen)
What are the potential complications of digestive symptoms?
In some cases, digestive symptoms can lead to serious complications, especially if the underlying disease or condition is untreated or poorly managed. Once the underlying cause is identified, you can help minimize your risk of serious complications by following the treatment plan you and your health care professional design specifically for you. Complications include:
Dehydration due to vomiting, diarrhea, or a decreased desire to drink fluids
Poor nutrition due to vomiting, diarrhea, or a decreased desire to eat
Sepsis (life-threatening bacterial blood infection)
Severe discomfort or pain
Working closely with a Holistic Chiropractor can help you develop a well-rounded, multifaceted approach to addressing your digestive concerns and cravings. With proper treatment many of the causes of digestive discomfort can be managed or even eliminated. Beyond just physical causes, emotions can contribute to digestive symptoms. This can commonly be seen with stress causing people to feel sick, engage in binge eating, or eat comfort foods they know to be bad for them. By working with a Holistic Chiropractor who practices Neuro-Emotional Technique (NET), they will be able to help you treat the underlying emotional problems and alleviate the discomfort. For more information on NET, go to www.netmindbody.com Also consider working with an Acupuncturist, Homeopath or Naturopath to develop a lifestyle that can support and manage your digestive problems.
Finally developing a healthy life-style with proper guidance from your Holistic Chiropractor is the best prevention. Asking questions about what you can do to develop a Preventative mindset is important.
Medicines Two Choices for You
Digestive symptoms can vary greatly in character and severity depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Depending on the cause, digestive symptoms can last a short time and disappear quickly, such as symptoms that occur during a single episode of indigestion. Digestive symptoms can also persist or recur over a longer period of time, such as when due to colorectal cancer or inflammatory bowel disease.
Digestive symptoms that are associated with dizziness, fainting, shortness of breath, bloody stool, or major rectal bleeding can indicate a serious, potentially life-threatening condition. Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, have any of these symptoms. Seek prompt medical care if your symptoms are persistent, recur, or cause you concern.
With digestive problems proper prevention is much more effective than trying to cure the damage after the fact. Therefore you should eat a proper nutritionally balanced diet everyday while minimizing foods that upset your system. Drinking plenty of water is vital to stay hydrated as dehydration can also cause or worsen stomach problems.
Avoid unhealthy foods, or foods that are known to cause problems with your system. If you are on, or about to start antibiotic therapy speak with your Holistic Chiropractor for advice on a proper probiotic regimen. A probiotic regimen will help prevent or alleviate digestive problems stemming from the effects of antibiotics on your system.
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