Why Is Your Stomach Upset Every Morning?

Waking up with an upset stomach in the morning isn't the greatest way to start your day. Nearly everyone has experienced an upset stomach from time to time, whether it's due to indigestion, illness, or just something that you've consumed the night before doesn't agree with you the next day. However, for some people, waking up with an upset stomach is something they have to deal with on a daily basis. For those who have this problem each and every day, they need to know what is causing their symptoms.

Possible Causes of Upset Stomach Every Morning

1. Morning Sickness

For women in the early stages of pregnancy, upset stomachs can strike any time during the day, but the stomach issues usually occur first thing in the morning. The morning sickness typically doesn't pose any risk to the pregnancy, and although the nausea is annoying and uncomfortable, the most common symptom is vomiting. The good news is that after the first trimester, the symptoms usually pass. Discuss with your health care provider the severity and frequency of the symptoms to make sure you do not develop other complications or become anemic.

2. Irritable Bowel Syndrome(IBS)

IBS is a chronic disorder that causes food to move too quickly through the digestive track. Normally, IBS doesn't create any lasting damage in your colon; however, it can cause early morning stomach issues and diarrhea. Any change in routines or added stress can cause IBS symptoms to appear more frequently. Restless sleep has also been known to aggravate IBS symptoms first thing in the morning. Other symptoms may include abdominal cramps, gas, bloating, and watery diarrhea. Thankfully, a high fiber diet and a relaxing period before bedtime can help prevent these issues.

3. Gastritis

Gastritis occurs when the lining in the stomach becomes irritated and inflamed. Symptoms include indigestion, heartburn, abdominal pain, and vomiting. Alcohol can trigger gastritis in the early morning hours, and alcoholics typically develop chronic gastritis over a long period of time. People who consume large quantities of coffee throughout the day or who smoke cigarettes before bedtime also have similar issues with gastritis. The possibility for gastritis also increases in people with auto-immune disease or who overuse nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

4. Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease(GERD)

GERD may cause an upset stomach every morning because the condition is worsened when you are lying down. The stomach bile may back up into your esophagus and doesn't drain properly while you're prone. The stomach pain and heartburn associated with GERD may even wake you up causing additional stress from restless night sleep. The burning sensations typically resulting from acid reflux may also lead to more serious issues, such as a scarred esophagus or peptic ulcers. A change in diet, losing some weight, and elevating your head when sleeping can reduce the morning symptoms of GERD.

5. Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis is a sudden attack of severe upper abdominal pain caused by enzymes in the pancreas that leak into the abdominal cavity. These enzymes that are normally inactive in the pancreas become activated, which burns and irritates the lining of the stomach. People who consume large quantities of alcohol, or who are alcoholics, typically suffer from pancreatitis; however, the problem usually resolves on its own with abstinence from drinking and rest. Acute pancreatitis occurs when one of the pancreatic ducts becomes blocked by a gallstone and causes infection and damage to the pancreas.

6. Cholecystitis

Cholecystitis is inflammation of your gallbladder; it sometimes causes people to wake up with an upset stomach every morning. The gallbladder is a pear-shaped organ that locates below the liver. It stores bile, which your body uses to digest fats in the small intestine. The major symptom of this disorder is pain in your abdomen located in the upper right side that usually lasts at least half an hour. Symptoms include a dull and steady pain or cramping sensation. Acute cholecystitis is a sudden irritation and swelling of the gallbladder. It causes severe abdominal pain that radiates towards your back to below your right shoulder blade.

7. Peptic Ulcers

An irritation or open sore in the stomach lining or the upper part of the small intestine is known as a peptic ulcer. The main cause of stomach ulcers is an infection caused by H. pylori bacteria, and the most common symptom of a peptic ulcer is a gnawing or burning sensation in your stomach just below your sternum. Other factors must also be present to actually trigger ulcers, including genetic, immune disorders, and stress. People who are restless when sleeping or have interrupted sleep are at a higher risk for peptic ulcer than those who sleep normally because interruptions in sleep weaken the immune system.

8. Dehydration

Dehydration is a possible cause of an upset stomach every morning. Severe abdominal pain, with other symptoms like vomiting, back aches and pain in the lower limb have been shown to be caused by severe dehydration. The good news is the symptoms subside once people are rehydrated. The way to avoid dehydration is to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day, especially if you plan on outdoor activities.

When to Worry

  • You'll need to seek emergency medical attention by calling an ambulance ifyour stomach pain is severe and is due to traumafrom an accident or injury.
  • You'll need to seek immediate medical attentionif your pain is severe and it's accompanied by persistent nausea and vomiting, tenderness in the abdomen, yellow skin, bloody stools, or swollen belly.
  • Schedule a doctor's visit if your abdominal pain radiates towards your back, persists for hours, or lasts more than a few days.
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