Can Stress Cause Abdominal Pain

Can Stress Cause Abdominal Pain


Abdominal pain caused by stress


Abdominal pain caused by stress doesn't have a physical cause. The complaints are caused by mental or emotional stress, which the body translates into physical symptoms, just like the knot in your stomach when you have a big test or an important meeting. There are a variety of ways in which mental or emotional stress can be linked to physical pain, especially in the upper abdominal region. Often, a doctor may find that there is nothing physically wrong with the person, but the person continues to experience pain in the abdomen.

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Symptoms of abdominal pain caused by stress include


  • Nagging, vague abdominal pain
  • Nausea
  • Bloated feeling
  • Irregular consistency of stool
  • Flatulence

Studies have shown that irritable bowel syndrome, a condition which causes a lot of abdominal discomfort, is related to excessive stress. Long-term anxiety may is one of the most common causes of IBS and may also cause diarrhea and stomach upsets. However, relaxation techniques and changes in eating habits can often help in reducing the symptoms of stress.

Treatment for abdominal pain caused by stress


Although the causes of the symptoms are largely unknown, stress may also be related to constipation. When a person is severely constipated, it may cause extreme pain in the abdomen. There are many home remedies and over-the-counter medications for constipation. However, treating stress, which is the underlying cause of constipation, needs to be treated first. Thus, pain in the abdomen, caused by severe Constipation, may be eased by practicing relaxation techniques.

Psychosomatic pain is when the pain that you experience is only psychological and has no physical cause. This kind of pain is usually experienced in the chest, abdomen and the head. Painkillers usually do not help much as there are no physiological causes to the pain. Abdominal pain caused by stress isn't serious, but can be very bothersome and it usually isn't necessary to contact a doctor.

Medications usually do not help a person when the abdominal pain is associated with stress. If the doctors are not able to find anything wrong physiologically, relaxation techniques should be employed to cure these physical manifestations of stress. yoga and meditation are two of the most successful routines for relieving stress. When practiced regularly, both yoga and meditation can help in improving symptoms of stress as well as overall health.

The treatment therefore for abdominal pain caused by stress should focus on treating the stress rather than the abdominal pain. A variety of techniques can be utilised such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), self help techniques and hypnosis. The principle of this is to treat the cause of the abdominal pain rather than just trying to treat the symptoms which won’t resolve the root cause of the problem.

Abdominal pain caused by stress can be better when talking to a psychologist. A doctor can refer you to an appropriate psychologist for treating abdominal pain caused by stress.