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Today in Health & Wellness
HEALTH CONDITIONS

Colic

Overview
Symptoms
Risk Factors
Commonly Prescribed Drugs
Treatment and Management
Doctors to Consult
Overview

Colic is a condition of severe spasmodic pain of the abdomen. It can occur when there is distention, obstruction, or inflammation of the stomach.

There are various causes of colic especially in adults. The most common cause is indigestion after consuming certain foods like fatty or spicy foods. Other causes include gas or wind in the stomach, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, allergy to milk or soy, and stomach or duodenal ulcers. Infants can also experience colic due to the same causes.

Colic does not usually require consultation with a doctor. For colicky pain that worsens or cannot be managed, a doctor starts the diagnosis by determining the possible cause of the pain or discomfort. The doctor can consider the patient’s medical history and dietary habits. Further exams can be done to eliminate other causes of the spasmodic pain.

 
Symptoms
  • Abdominal pain, discomfort or cramps
  • Passing of gas/flatulence
  • A knotted feeling in the stomach
  • Swelling and tightness of abdomen
Risk Factors
  • Lactose or gluten intolerant
  • Diet rich in high fiber foods. This includes fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
  • Drinking carbonated beverages
  • Chronic intestinal condition. Includes irritable bowel syndrome and inflammatory bowel disease
Commonly Prescribed Drugs
  • Lactase supplements can be given to patients who are lactose intolerant. These help the body digest lactose to reduce symptoms of colic.
  • Simethicone is used to eliminate wind and manage discomfort due to the trapped air. It is an anti-flatulent that breaks down smaller bubbles of trapped air in the stomach into larger bubbles that can be easily passed as wind or burp. It is usually combined with other drugs used to manage disorders of the stomach. Use this in infants after consultation with a doctor.

 

Treatment and Management
  • Identify which foods frequently cause colic. Reduce or avoid consuming these trigger foods.
  • Reduce consumption of fried and fatty foods. These foods cause bloating and give a feeling of fullness.
  • Slowly add high-fiber food in the diet to allow the body to adapt.
  • Consume small amounts of milk products if lactose intolerant. Eliminate dairy foods if colic is still experienced even in small amounts of milk.
  • Eat in smaller portions. Chew the food thoroughly and do not gulp to reduce trapping air in the stomach.
  • Avoid chewing gum and using straws to drink.
Home Remedies
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