Do you have any of these symptoms regularly?
A burning sensation, rising from the stomach up towards the chest or neck. Alternatively a chronic irritating cough, sensation of pressure or discomfort in the chest, upper abdomen, or throat, frequent belching. May be accompanied by regurgitation of stomach contents into the pharynx. Symptoms are worse after eating or lying down, and are relieved by antacids in GERD (Gastro-Esophageal Reflux Disease). Halitosis, chronic laryngitis (hoarseness or sore throat) and dental erosion may also be indicators of “Silent” Reflux or LPR (Laryngopharyngeal Reflux). A seemingly benign condition, chronic GERD or LPR can lead to serious complications.
An enlarged appearance of the abdomen, possibly caused by gas, but also may be due to: fluid retention, masses/tumours, enlarged organs, intestinal obstruction, severe malnutrition or excessive abdominal fat.
Characterized by abdominal discomfort, bloating, excess belching or excess flatulence (farting) – all signs of Dysbiosis (an alteration in the normal make-up of microbes in your gut). Excess gas may also indicate: GERD (Gastro-esophageal Reflux Disease), Celiac Disease or IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome).
A feeling of fullness in the abdomen. Bloating is often related to intestinal gas and associated with dysbiosis (an alteration in the normal make-up of microbes in your gut). Bloating may also be a symptom of Celiac Disease, IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) or SIBO (Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth).
Abdominal pain or discomfort felt between your chest and groin, often associated with: Dysbiosis, Constipation, Heartburn or GERD (Gastro-esophageal Reflux Disease), PUD (Peptic Ulcer Disease), or Food Sensitivities. Cramp-like pain is usually due to menstrual cramps or when accompanied by bloating, gas and/or diarrhea: food intolerance, infection, IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), Celiac Disease, or IBD (Ulcerative Colitis or Crohn’s Disease). Colicky pain (in waves) or pain accompanied by a fever, might indicate a more serious or acute problem – like appendicitis, gallstones, kidney stones, intestinal obstruction, pancreatitis or even a heart attack. Severity of pain doesn’t always indicate seriousness of condition.
A bowel movement that is loose and/or watery in form. It may be caused by: infection, substances, food intolerances or seen chronically in digestive conditions like: Celiac Disease, IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), and IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease – Ulcerative Colitis & Crohn’s Disease). A top concern with diarrhea is dehydration – which can have dire consequences. Note frequency, duration, presence of blood, mucous or undigested food, colour of stool and concurrent symptoms, and seek medical advice if it persists for more than 24 hours.
Bowel movements that become less frequent or more difficult to pass. Two or more of the following criteria: straining at stool 25% of the time or more, hard stools 25% of the time or more, incompletely voided stool 25% of the time or more, less than 3 bowel movements/week. I work with patients towards a goal of at least one daily bowel movement that is easy to pass. Constipation may be due to: insufficient fluids, low fibre diet, lack of sufficient exercise, excessive dairy consumption, stress, travel/change of environment, laxative abuse, Hypothyroidism, certain medications, alcohol consumption, eating disorders, or IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). In some cases, there may be dysfunction of pelvic floor muscles or the nerves responsible for defecation. Chronic constipation may also be a precursor to hemorrhoids, colon cancer, high cholesterol, hormone imbalance (i.e. elevated estrogen) and estrogen-dependent cancers.