abdominal pain causesTrying to figure out what is causing your stomach to hurt can be difficult to determine when there are so many things that could be causing it. When you have stomach pain, you may want to visit an urgent care center. While up to 65% of emergency pain situations are treated at urgent care centers, there are times when it’s wiser to seek medical treatment in an emergency room. Here are the five most common abdominal pain causes and some info on whether or not you should seek emergency treatment.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is one of the most common abdominal pain causes that doctors treat. This condition is characterized by gassiness, bloating, and cramping in the lower abdomen. It affects around 20% of the population and can cause either constipation or diarrhea. If you’re experiencing sudden weight loss or rectal bleeding, you should seek out emergency services as soon as possible.

Constipation

Constipation is another common cause of abdominal pain. When pressure builds up in the small intestines and colon, it can cause lumpy bowel movements that are difficult to pass. It can cause you to feel bloated and go to the bathroom less often than you normally would. You can treat constipation by adding more fiber in your diet, exercising, and drinking plenty of water. Laxatives and stool softeners can also provide some much-needed relief. Consult emergency services if you experience rectal bleeding, vomiting, fever, or sudden weight loss.

Appendicitis

Appendicitis can hit you with a sharp severe pain that feels like it came out of nowhere. It’s caused by a blockage that causes your appendix to become swollen and sore. The infected appendix can burst if not treated. The most common pain people experience with appendicitis shows up as an uncomfortable sensation around their belly buttons, which gets worse over time. The pain can be so excruciating that it can be difficult to walk. This condition is typically treated by having the appendix removed through surgery.

Lactose Intolerance

Sugar in dairy products can be hard for some people to digest. As a result, they may experience abdominal cramping. Gas, bloating, and diarrhea within two hours of consuming this lactose. One of the best ways to treat this abdominal discomfort is to eliminate dairy from your diet. Your doctor can run tests to diagnose whether or not you have this condition.

Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis is a chronic condition that causes inflammation and ulcers to form on the inner lining of the large intestine. The most common symptoms include nausea, abdominal cramps, sudden weight loss, and bloody stool. The condition can be genetic and typically affects people between 15 and 30 years of age.

If your abdominal pain causes extreme discomfort, you should get immediate treatment to prevent it from getting worse. A medical professional can run tests to determine the root cause and prescribe the best course of treatment. For dull pain that comes and goes, you can seek medical advice from your primary doctor. If the pain is sudden and severe, head to an urgent care center or emergency room center right away.