Understanding Abdominal Pain: 5 Common Causes

Nov 1, 2020

Your abdomen is a complex part of your body, which contains numerous vital organs, connective tissues, and muscles. With so many parts of your body enclosed within, it’s no wonder abdominal pain is a common complaint.

Abdominal pain can have many different causes, ranging from minor to severe and acute to chronic. So making an accurate diagnosis is important for treating your issue and managing your pain. With many state-of-the-art treatments available, abdominal pain management specialist Hasan Badday, MD, is well-equipped to offer relief from any pain in your abdomen at Pacific Pain & Regenerative Medicine, with locations in Irvine and Los Angeles, California.

Dr. Badday explains five of the most common causes of abdominal pain, and what to do to find relief.

Common abdominal pain causes

Abdominal pain can literally have dozens of causes. Here are five of the most common reasons you might experience this discomfort.

1. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

Issues with your digestion can cause pain within your abdomen, and of these causes, IBS is one of the most common. IBS is a chronic condition that causes your large intestine to have a more difficult time processing certain foods and beverages.

Cramping and pain in your abdomen are common symptoms of IBS, which are often relieved by having a bowel movement. You might also experience bloating, gas, and nausea.

2. Muscle strain

Your abdomen contains many muscles, and you use them by simply going about your typical routine. As a result, it’s easy to pull or strain these muscles, which can be extremely painful.

Your odds of experiencing an abdominal muscle pull or strain increase if you exercise frequently, especially if you focus on exercises or sports that rely heavily on abdominal muscles.

3. Acid reflux

Acid reflux occurs when the acids in your stomach back up into your esophagus after eating. The resulting pain, known as heartburn, can feel like a burning sensation in your upper abdomen and can also cause bloating and cramping.

Anyone can get acid reflux occasionally, but if you experience it more than twice a week, you might have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). GERD occurs when acid reflux happens persistently and can cause nausea as well as abdominal pain.

4. Hernias

You can get a hernia in your abdomen when your stomach squeezes through the muscles that normally keep it in place. Small hernias often cause no problems, but a larger hernia can be extremely painful.

A larger hernia can also cause you to feel abdominal pain, bloating, constipation, and acid reflux. You might experience shortness of breath as well.

5. Kidney stones

Kidney stones is a common condition that occurs when chemicals build up in your urine and crystalize, creating stones. You can urinate out small kidney stones without incident, but larger stones can cause excruciating pain in your abdominal area.

A bigger kidney stone can cause pain in your lower back and abdomen, as well as nausea and vomiting.

Healing your abdominal pain

Whether your abdominal pain is acute or chronic, Dr. Badday can treat your pain. First, he performs a thorough examination and consultation to find the cause of your pain.

Once he’s determined the root cause, Dr. Badday recommends the best course of treatment for your acute or chronic abdominal pain based on your diagnosis and personal needs.

To heal your abdominal pain for good and find a treatment plan that works, make an in-person or telemedicine appointment at Pacific Pain & Regenerative Medicine online or by calling your preferred practice location.

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