The word ulcer has already been a household word for many of us since ulcer is one of the most common ailments in the world. Stomach ulcer, for instance, may also be called as peptic ulcer or gastric ulcer. A stomach or gastric ulcer is a break in the tissue lining the stomach. The term ‘peptic ulcer’ refers to those that occur in either the stomach or the first part of the small intestine that leads out of the stomach, called the duodenum.
There has been many speculation s on the causes of ulcer and here has been no clear and substantial root cause of this disease. In fact, the causes of ulcer are so varied that ulcers may persist on the different organs of the body where acidic substances exist. Probably the most evident cause of ulcer could the stress of modern life or a steady diet of fast food. About one of every 10 Americans has encountered the torment of ulcer in the stomach or lower intestine which causes abdominal pain. People suffering with peptic or gastric ulcer usually get medical help and treatment. There are many kinds of ulcer and some of which has been used interchangeably and has spawned misconception amongst the people.
One common type of ulcer is the peptic ulcer. Peptic ulcers are holes or breaks on the walls of the duodenum which is located on the upper part of the small intestine or even holes in the stomach. These organs are in constant contact with stomach acids and enzymes like gastric acid. Peptic ulcer may somehow be coined by many as stomach ulcer. Though duodenal ulcers are more common than stomach ulcers many still believe that a pain on the abdominal area of the body are caused by the holes in the stomach. Another type of ulcer is esophageal ulcer where protective lining on the esophagus is damaged due to alcohol abuse.
Another concept that is greatly associated with ulcer is the term bleeding ulcer. The term bleeding ulcer can have multiple meanings which depend on the part of the gastrointestinal tract the ulcer has been damaging. Basically, an ulcer was defined as a lesion or cut in the skin but these days; ulcers are most focused on the gastrointestinal tract or the digestive system. When there is no medical intervention, these lesions may enlarge and get complicated that the heading of “bleeding” is more appropriate in naming it. Furthermore, bleeding ulcer are in fact bleeding lesions that attacks the blood vessels.
In the mid-1980’s, it has been established that the cause of ulcers, may it be peptic ulcers or gastric ulcer is stress, a genetic predisposition to excessive stomach acid secretion , and poor lifestyle habits which include eating fatty foods, alcohol, caffeine, and smoking tobacco. These factors attack the protective lining of the stomach, duodenum, the intestines, or the esophagus due to the excessive buildup of gastric or stomach acids.
Moreover, another existing theory has been battling the pre-established theory of the causes of peptic ulcers. Ulcers like duodenal ulcers, stomach ulcers, or gastric ulcer are also believed to be the result of a bacterial infection. In a research and experiment conducted years ago, bacterium Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is present in more than 90% of duodenal ulcers and about 80% of stomach ulcers. In this connection, stomach ulcers are also considered one of the suspects of stomach cancer. Doctors agreed that the H. pylori virus which is present in gastric ulcers is also the main causes of stomach cancer. That is why, early medication and treatment of ulcers is vital in preventing serious illness or complications like stomach cancer.
It has also been studied that another cause of ulcer is the excessive use of over-the-counter pain killers like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen. It was also observed that individuals who smoke a lot or drink alcohol most of the time are more prone to ulcers or has already been suffering to such illness. Though esophageal ulcer is more common than stomach and duodenal ulcers in smokers and heavy drinkers, the effect is still painful. The risk of having peptic ulcers also varies. For instance, older people are more likely to develop ulcers than younger ones. People with blood type A are also considered to be more prone to ulcer. Duodenal ulcer on the other hand observed to be more consistent to patients with blood type O. It has been determined, that people with this type of blood does not produce much of the chemicals used to protect the linings or walls of the duodenum. The causes of ulcers are clearly the results of not only one’s choice or decision on a particular lifestyle but also due to some genetic and irrevocable human properties.
A person with ulcers may experience abdominal pain, abdominal fullness or bloating and water brash. More signs include nausea, and copious vomiting, loss of appetite and unexplained weight loss.
Vomiting of blood may also be dangerous when there are serious complications of ulcer.
The treatment of ulcer changes with the area that has been damage. The cure for ulcer is also readily available to most of the public. Fortunately, peptic ulcers and even other types of ulcer are treatable and in many cases can be treated or cured with antibiotics, antacids, and other drugs that reduce the amount of acid like gastric acid produced by the stomach. Alternative ways of treating ulcers are also available to relieve pain. One must consult a medical expert or a doctor before taking in a medication.
It has also been discussed by many medical experts and scientists that there are food for ulcers. In other woods there certain foods that seems to aggravate their symptoms. One of which are foods that are rich in fiber especially from fruits and vegetables. Avoid fatty food intake that causes irritation to the digestive system. One should also have food for ulcers eaten at least daily and a healthy diet is vital in our system.