Food in the stomach is broken down by digestive juices. The stomach itself is protected from these digestive juices by a mucous lining. Gastritis is a common condition of the gastrointestinal system, characterized by inflammation or irritation of the stomach’s lining caused by weakness in the mucous lining. Gastritis can be caused by stress, excess alcohol consumption, certain medicines and bacterial/viral infections.
Gastritis can be chronic (develop over time) or acute (occur suddenly). The symptoms may include bloating, indigestion, loss of appetite, burning or gnawing feeling in the stomach, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and a feeling of fullness in the upper abdomen.
Your doctor may recommend some diagnostic tests to confirm the cause of gastritis. These can include:
The treatment of gastritis is aimed at treating the underlying cause. Your doctor may prescribe medications such as antacids or proton pump inhibitors to lower the levels of acid (neutralize) in the stomach. Antibiotics may be prescribed if gastritis is caused due to infection. Your doctor may advice you to avoid caffeine, alcohol, certain medicines and some foods that may increase the symptoms of gastritis.