What Causes Burning in the Stomach?

Burning sensations in the stomach

Burning sensations in the stomach can be caused by a variety of factors, ranging from benign issues like indigestion to more serious medical conditions. Here are some common causes of a burning sensation in the stomach:

  • Gastric Acid:
    • Acid Reflux (Heartburn): One of the most common causes of a burning sensation in the stomach is acid reflux. Stomach acid can flow back into the esophagus, causing a burning sensation in the chest and sometimes extending to the stomach area.
    • Gastritis: Inflammation of the stomach lining, known as gastritis, can lead to stomach discomfort and a burning sensation. It may be caused by infection, alcohol consumption, certain medications, or autoimmune disorders.
  • Ulcers:
    • Peptic Ulcers: These are sores that develop on the lining of the stomach or the duodenum (the first part of the small intestine). They can cause a burning or gnawing pain in the stomach, especially when the stomach is empty or at night. Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection is a common cause of peptic ulcers.
  • Diet and Food Sensitivities:
    • Spicy or Irritating Foods: Consuming spicy foods, acidic foods, or foods that are hard to digest can sometimes irritate the stomach lining and lead to a burning sensation.
    • Food Allergies or Intolerances: Some individuals may experience stomach discomfort, including burning sensations, as a result of food allergies or intolerances, such as lactose intolerance or gluten sensitivity.
  • Medications:
    • Some medications, especially nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like aspirin or ibuprofen, can irritate the stomach lining and cause a burning sensation. Chronic use of these medications can lead to gastritis or ulcers.
  • Stress and Anxiety: High levels of stress or anxiety can lead to physical symptoms, including stomach discomfort and a burning sensation. This is often referred to as “nervous stomach.”
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD): In addition to occasional heartburn, chronic acid reflux or GERD can lead to persistent burning sensations in the chest and stomach area.
  • Infections: Certain bacterial or viral infections in the gastrointestinal tract can cause stomach discomfort and burning sensations. Examples include gastroenteritis or stomach flu.
  • Pancreatitis: Inflammation of the pancreas can lead to abdominal pain and a burning sensation in the upper abdomen.
  • Medications: Some medications, such as certain antibiotics or antifungal drugs, may cause stomach discomfort and a burning sensation as side effects.
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): IBS can cause a variety of gastrointestinal symptoms, including abdominal pain and burning sensations, often accompanied by changes in bowel habits.
  • Biliary Disorders: Conditions affecting the gallbladder or bile ducts, such as gallstones or biliary colic, can cause pain and discomfort that may be perceived as a burning sensation.

It’s important to note that persistent or severe stomach discomfort, especially when associated with other concerning symptoms such as vomiting blood, black or tarry stools, unexplained weight loss, or difficulty swallowing, should be evaluated by a healthcare provider. Proper diagnosis and treatment are essential to address the underlying cause of the burning sensation in the stomach and to provide relief from symptoms.

  • Recent Posts

  • Categories

  • Archives

  • Tags