Intestinal cramps or abdominal pain: a rumbling feeling in the intestines causing cramping of the intestinal muscles. This usually causes pain that occurs in attacks. Frequently having to go to the toilet or flatulence is one of the symptoms. Intestinal colic in babies is quite common. How do you recognize intestinal cramps and how do you prevent this form of abdominal pain?
What is intestinal cramps?
Intestinal cramps are a common condition of the colon. The intestinal muscles are disturbed in their functioning, causing abdominal cramps or intestinal cramps. This may be short-lived, but can also last for several days. Intestinal colic in babies is even more common: the intestines of babies do not yet work optimally, which means that abdominal cramps quickly occur.
Symptoms of intestinal cramps
Intestinal cramps mainly involve pain: a rumbling feeling in the intestines and cramps that come on suddenly. There is also a lot of gas formation. One has to go to the toilet more often than usual. Sometimes one has to go to the toilet every five to ten minutes, during which the intestines are literally emptied. This involves farting a lot. Sometimes there is also constipation or a lot of mucus formation in the intestines.
Intestinal cramps in baby
A young baby’s digestive system does not yet work optimally. This can cause intestinal cramps. Usually begins at 2 to 3 weeks of age. The baby is crying and is almost impossible to comfort. It is difficult to reduce colic in babies because there is little that works well in babies. Sometimes the doctor can prescribe a medication that reduces gas formation. Sometimes it helps to place the baby on his tummy on your arm or knee, moving back and forth or massaging his back. A nice bath also helps the baby relax. Distraction can also help the baby through the painful period: most babies feel comfortable in a baby carrier.
Most babies hardly suffer from colic anymore by the age of 12 weeks. If intestinal cramps persist, there may also be an allergy. It is important for parents to keep track of the extent to which the baby is suffering from colic.
Abdominal pain near nerves
People who are nervous, or have ‘the nerves’, for example before a certain event, will notice that they quickly suffer from stomach pain. The intestinal muscles react to the nervousness, causing their functioning to be disrupted. Periods of many and few complaints often alternate. Some people suffer from it more than others.
Medicines that relieve muscle spasms often do not work in people with nervousness. For these people it is better to take medicines that provide mental peace. Although abdominal pain during nerves is very annoying, it is important to go to the toilet as often as necessary. Urges should not be resisted. It is often a great relief when the intestines are emptied. The cramps/pain will go away or be greatly reduced. When the nerve-wracking situation is over, the intestines will naturally calm down again.
Prevent intestinal cramps
Anyone who suffers from intestinal cramps would do well not to eat too late in the day, so that the intestines can rest at night. Also avoid consuming fatty foods, as this can promote intestinal cramps. Eating too quickly can also trigger intestinal cramps. If intestinal cramps occur frequently or are accompanied by blood loss, it is advisable to visit a doctor. Intestinal cramps that occur suddenly or after food poisoning usually disappear within three to five days. When constipation occurs, it is advisable to consume fiber-rich food. Drinking plenty of water also helps to clear the blockage.
Certain foods cause intestinal cramps. For example, fruit sugar is known to cause intestinal cramps. All products containing refined sugars can also affect the intestines.
Diseases in which intestinal cramps occur
Certain diseases cause intestinal cramps. For example, with Crohn’s disease. Attacks of pain can also occur with diverticulitis. Colon cancer does not cause pain in the first stage, but can cause intestinal cramps in a later stage. Appendicitis usually causes a different type of pain. Intestinal inflammation is the most known cause of intestinal cramps.