There are many reasons for the stomach to ache constantly. Common conditions that can cause the stomach to ache constantly include:
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm (bulging and weakening of the major artery in the body)
- Bowel blockage or obstruction
- Cancer of the stomach, pancreas, colon, or other organs
- Celiac disease
- Cholecystitis (inflammation of the gallbladder) with or without gallstones
- Decreased blood supply to the intestines (ischemic bowel)
- Food allergies or food intolerances (such as lactose intolerance)
- Food poisoning
- Gastroesophageal reflux (GERD), heartburn, or indigestion
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Lactose intolerance
- Menstrual cramps
- Muscle strain
- Pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas)
- Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
- Peptic ulcer disease
- Ruptured ovarian cyst
- Spleen problems
- Stomach flu
- Pregnancy/pregnancy complications
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs) or urinary retention
What Are Symptoms of a Stomach Ache?
Symptoms of a stomach ache depend on the cause.
The ache may be dull and intermittent or constant. Aches and pains may be felt in any part of the abdomen, and can also radiate to other areas such as the back, flank, or shoulder.
Symptoms that may accompany a stomach ache may include:
What Is the Treatment for a Stomach Ache?
There is no single treatment for a stomach ache. Treatment varies widely and depends on the specific cause.
Most of the time, a stomach ache can be treated at home by:
- Consuming clear liquids in frequent, small amounts until urine is a pale yellow or clear color
- If vomiting happens, start with small sips of water or sucking on ice chips If fluids are tolerated, bland solid foods may be slowly added, such as the BRAT diet:
- Rice, white
- Toast, plain or with only jelly or honey if desired
- Avoid foods that irritate the stomach
Over-the-counter (OTC) medications may help relieve certain symptoms associated a stomach ache. Talk to your doctor to find out which medicaine might be best for your issue.
- Antacids or acid reducers (Pepcid, Zantac) for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Simethicone (Gas-X, Mylanta) for gas and bloating
- Loperamide (Imodium) or bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol) for diarrhea
- Stool softeners or laxatives for constipation
- Acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), or naproxen (Aleve) for cramping pain
If a stomach ache is caused by an underlying medical problem, such as an ulcer, treatment for that problem may help relieve symptoms.
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