Gastric ulcers, which are just as often referred to as stomach ulcers, are uncomfortable and potentially painful sores that can develop in the lining of the stomach. Stomach ulcers are a form of peptic ulcers, and thus anyone suffering from a stomach ulcer would fit the diagnosis for having peptic ulcer disease. Peptic ulcers are those that have an influence on the stomach as well as the small intestine, both of which can adversely affect digestion.
Stomach ulcers and other forms of peptic ulcers are generally caused by something that affects the production of mucus in the lining of the digestive tract. The stomach produces a thick sheen of mucus that helps to protect the stomach lining from the acids that are used to digest food and destroy pathogens. If this stomach acid comes into contact with the lining of the stomach, such as it does when this mucus isn’t being produced, ulcers can develop. The most common thing that leads to the development of ulcers is a bacterium referred to as H. Pylori. This bacterium causes the stomach to produce less mucus and therefore makes it more prone to developing ulcers. The other leading cause of ulcers is over-consumption or long-term use of NSAIDs, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, which are over-the-counter medicines used to treat symptoms like headache and joint pain. There are other things that can contribute to ulcers, such as excessive consumption of alcohol and smoking, but the first two factors are the most common.
Stomach ulcers can cause a number of unpleasant symptoms ranging from pain to nausea, and they can interfere with a person’s ability to digest food, leading to problems such as malnutrition. Fortunately, ulcers can be healed pretty quickly once they are recognized—it often only takes a couple weeks for a patient to recover from an ulcer. Unfortunately, if ulcers are left untreated for a long time, they can require surgical intervention. If you’re wondering about whether or not you have an ulcer, you might benefit from reading the following symptoms. This can help you identify whether or not you’re suffering from an ulcer or something else.
Symptom #1: Burning in the Abdomen
One of the most common symptoms associated with stomach ulcers is a burning sensation. This burning sensation tends to arise in the abdomen in the area where the stomach is located, somewhere between the chest and the belly button. The exact location of the feeling will depend on where the ulcer is located.
This pain tends to be more intense in the morning or during other times when your stomach is empty. It can also become more intense when you’re eating food or shortly after a meal.