Stomach Burning? Causes, Home Remedies, Treatments

Stomach Burning? Causes, Home Remedies, Treatments

Stomach burning (usually indigestion) is often a sign of an underlying condition. Here’s what causes stomach burning, how to find relief, and when to seek help.

Indigestion

Experiencing pain or burning in the stomach, bloating, excessive belching, nausea after meals, an early feeling of fullness when eating, or other abdominal pain? You may be experiencing dyspepsia, commonly known as indigestion. The Mayo Clinic says it is unclear what causes indigestion. But factors that put you at risk are being female, using over-the-counter pain relievers, smoking, anxiety or depression, history of childhood physical or sexual abuse, or bacterial stomach infection.

Normally, you can treat indigestion with over-the-counter gas remedies like Mylanta or Gas-X or medications that reduce acid production like Pepcid AC or Tagamet HB. Other medicines are lansoprazole (Prevacid 24HR), omeprazole (Prilosec OTC), and esomeprazole (Nexium 24HR). In addition, the Mayo Clinic suggests if you are feeling nauseous after eating, try an anti-emetic like promethazine, prochlorperazine, or meclizine.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms: bloody vomit, dark tarry stools, shortness of breath, pain that radiates to your jaw, neck, or arm, or unexplained weight loss, make sure to see a doctor for treatment.

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)

GERD is most commonly associated with heartburn. The condition and its symptoms touch 20% of the U.S. population. GERD typically causes heartburn but can also present as a burning sensation in the stomach pit. Other symptoms can include food coming back into your mouth, food feeling caught in your throat, coughing, chest pain, problem swallowing, vomiting, sore throat, and hoarseness.

It’s a condition in which acid-containing contents in your stomach persistently leak back into your esophagus, the tube from your throat to your stomach. With the disorder, the lower esophageal valve doesn’t close properly when the food arrives in your stomach. As a result, acid backwash flows back up through your esophagus into your throat and mouth, giving you a sour taste.

Many over-the-counter medicines for heartburn treat GERD, like Pepcid, Prevacid, or Prilosec OTC. You can also pay attention to what foods activate your GERD and try to avoid those in your diet.

If you experience severe, frequent GERD symptoms or take over-the-counter medicine for heartburn more than twice a week, the Mayo Clinic recommends you visit your doctor.

Gastritis

If you’re experiencing stomach burning, you might have gastritis. The symptoms include gnawing, a burning ache or pain in your upper abdomen that can worsen with eating, nausea, vomiting, or feeling full.

Now, gastritis isn’t one condition; instead, it’s a group of conditions that all have inflammation of the stomach lining. The lining protects your stomach from the strong stomach acid that digests your food. So, when something damages or weakens it, that lining is no longer fully protected and becomes inflamed, causing gastritis. It can come on suddenly or gradually. The bacteria H. pylori is the most common bacterial cause of gastritis. Regular use of pain relievers, age, excessive alcohol use, stress, cancer treatment, HIV/AIDs, Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, sarcoidosis, and parasitic infections can also cause it.

Medications to improve symptoms include the prescription and over-the-counter medications omeprazole (Prilosec), lansoprazole (Prevacid), rabeprazole (Aciphex), and pantoprazole (Protonix). Acid blockers can also help, including famotidine (Pepcid), cimetidine (Tagamet HB), and nizatidine (Axid AR).

Some research on home remedies, like garlic extract, has shown positive results. Another study found that green or black tea can help reduce H. pylori. Probiotics can help too.

See a doctor if these treatments are not helping and your symptoms become severe. Also, if your signs and symptoms persist for more than a week, if you’re vomiting and can’t hold food down, feel light-headed or dizzy, are vomiting blood, have bloody stool, or stool that appears black, see a doctor.

Peptic Ulcers

Lastly, open sores on the stomach lining and the upper portion of your small intestine can cause burning stomach pain. These sores are called peptic ulcers. Other symptoms can include feeling fullness, bloating or belching, intolerance to fatty foods, heartburn, or nausea. Severe signs of peptic ulcers can be vomiting blood, dark blood in stool, black or tarry stool, trouble breathing, unexplained weight loss, or appetite changes.

  1. pylori infection, regular use of certain pain relievers, or taking meds along with NSAIDs, such as steroids, anticoagulants, low-dose aspirin, and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, can all cause peptic ulcers.

Over-the-counter medications like the ones for gastritis can help treat symptoms, also antacids to neutralize stomach acid.

If those medications don’t work or you are experiencing severe symptoms, schedule an appointment with your doctor.

Find a Doctor at AFC

American Family Care is ready to help you treat any of these symptoms right now. We offer wellness care at our walk-in urgent care centers. So, find a location near you to get on your way to feeling better.

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