What is Dyspepsia?
Heartburn, acid regurgitation, excess of burping/belching, increased abdominal bloating, nausea, a feeling of abnormal or slow digestion, or early satiety are all symptoms that can be described by the term “dyspepsia”. The cause of dyspepsia is unknown but is usually aggravated by eating and symptoms may suddenly disappear without an obvious remedy.
Having dyspepsia can have a significant impact on life at home and work. People with chronic upper gastrointestinal disorders have absenteeism rates nine times higher than healthy people. In addition, the productivity when individuals suffering from symptoms of dyspepsia are at work is eight times lower than those who are unaffected.
Sometimes symptoms can be helped by changes in lifestyle.
Get Enough Rest
Getting enough rest is so important! Studies have shown that people
with erratic sleeping patterns run the risk of disrupting their microbiome,
and running the risk of developing inflammatory diseases. Try to make
sure that you get at least 8 hours of sleep a night.
Your microbes feel that if they’re working hard to keep you healthy, then you should be working hard too! The microbiomes of physically active people are more healthy and diverse. It also has to be said that
one of the best ways to de-stress after a long day is by working out. Even just walking for 30 minutes a day could really impact your gut health, and help these little microbes continue to make sure that your
stress-levels are managed and your mental health stays intact.
Make time for you!
Say ‘no’ more often, explore meditation, mindfulness, yoga, or tai. Establishing balance in your life will support your mental and emotional health and optimize your gut and overall health. Stress can negatively affect your microbiome and you need a healthy microbiome to manage help you manage your stressors. If you’re not careful, and you may get caught in an unhealthy cycle if you do not give yourself time to re-energize.
Suggested lifestyle changes for those living with dyspepsia
- eat healthy foods
- stop smoking
- consider any correlation of symptoms with certain types of foods such as spicy foods, and alcohol.
- Elevate your head while sleeping – Raising the head of the bed may help some patients who have mostly reflux.
- Certain drugs such as aspirin and arthritis medication as well as pain killers (except acetominophen) may worsen injury to the stomach, and discontinuation or change of these medications may sometimes help.
- Stress does not usually cause dyspepsia but can worsen GI symptoms and heighten our awareness of those symptoms. In some cases, appropriate strategies to cope with stress can be helpful.