What really causes Ulcer?
Being an African child, I’m in Africa country; I know what it means to have ulcer, and when I meant “Ulcer” I meant chronic one.
You know those type that keeps you awake in the middle of the night? Those one that make you throw Sputum? Well, I have seen people experience that.
As a member Of Young African Leaders Initiative, one of the ways I will be giving back to my community this year is by intimating them about their health, most especially about the things they consume which have detrimental effect on their bodies.
My first article is about Ulcer, research has shown lot of people in Africa have Ulcer, most of which duodenum Ulcer is the most common, while on rare cases some have peptic Ulcer.
I have heard while I was growing up that Hunger, stress, pepper causes Ulcer but medically we only have two causes of Ulcer which are: Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) and long-term use of aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
A bacterium. Helicobacter pylori bacteria commonly live in the mucous layer that covers and protects tissues that line the stomach and small intestine. Often, the H. pylori bacterium causes no problems, but it can cause inflammation of the stomach’s inner layer, producing an ulcer.
It’s not clear how H. pylori infection spreads. It may be transmitted from person to person by close contact, such as kissing. People may also contract H. pylori through food and water.
Regular use of certain pain relievers. Taking aspirin, as well as certain over-the-counter and prescription pain medications called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can irritate or inflame the lining of your stomach and small intestine. These medications include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others), naproxen sodium (Aleve, Anaprox, others), ketoprofen and others. They do not include acetaminophen (Tylenol).
Peptic ulcers are more common in older adults who take these pain medications frequently or in people who take these medications for osteoarthritis.
Other medications. Taking certain other medications along with NSAIDs, such as steroids, anticoagulants, low-dose aspirin, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), alendronate (Fosamax) and risedronate (Actonel), can greatly increase the chance of developing ulcers.
I will love to dwell here a bit because I believe most of Ulcer patience in Africa are by product of NSAIDs. I will also love to mention drugs that are classified as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.The most prominent NSAIDs are aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen, all available over the counter (OTC) in most countries. What this drugs do mainly is inhibit activity of cyclooxygenase enzymes (COX-1 and/or COX-2). In cells, these enzymes are involved in the synthesis of key biological mediators, namely prostaglandins, which are involved in inflammation, and thromboxanes, which are involved in blood clotting.
There are two types of NSAIDs available: non-selective and COX-2 selective. Most NSAIDs are non-selective and inhibit the activity of both COX-1 and COX-2. These NSAIDs, while reducing inflammation, also inhibit platelet aggregation (especially aspirin) and increase the risk of gastrointestinal ulcers/bleeds.
What Worsen Ulcer?
And stress worsens ulcer but they do not cause Ulcer.
If naturally, you need to find out if it’s caused by Helicobacter pylori( Most Ulcer that are caused by this bacterium are often treated with Antacid and some antibiotics and do not last long.
Secondly, you need to check if it’s caused by the use of NSAIDs and if this is the cause you need to be sure you are not using the drug while treating the Ulcer.
Naturally way to cure Ulcer
Eating slightly acidic diary product like Milk, yoghurt, also depending on the level of gas accumulation in case of Peptic ulcers, you can chew ginger to ensure the release of Gases from your stomach or chest region.
A lot of people in Africa, especially Nigeria are victims of ulcer not because they don’t eat, we have food, but because we want to relieve ourselves of pains.
If we are going to do that, let be aware of the side effects of most of the pain relievers we use.