Muscle spasms in stomach is the contraction of stomach muscles. Muscle spasms in stomach will give you twitching feelings or sharp pains in your abdomen. These cramps happen because of the contractions of your gut or stomach walls. (1)
Stomach spasms are not life-threatening. But if they are persistent, they could show some underlying health condition. (2)
Well it turns out, you can actually get rid of muscle spasms by following some natural remedies.
Common Symptoms of Muscle Spasms in Stomach
You can detect a stomach spasm from the following signs: (3)
- Bloating and satiety
- Nausea and vomiting
- Too much sweating
- Shortness of breath
- Rapid heartbeat
- Blood in stool
- Twitching and acute pain in the stomach.
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Causes of Muscle Spasms in Stomach
1. Food Poisoning: Food poisoning is one of the primary reasons for stomach spasms (4). You may get food poisoning by consuming contaminated food and drink or any bacteria or virus such as salmonella.
2. Gas: There are many ways that you form gas in your stomach. Such as: eating too fast, drinking carbonated beverages, and smoking can lead to excess gas in your stomach.
The accumulated air may create burps. These burps are usual and may not cause you stomach spasms.
Yet, a bacterium Helicobacter pylori may cause you chronic belching, gas or bloating. (6)
You may suffer from stomach flu because of consuming contaminated food and drink. Viral gastroenteritis can cause stomach spasms, diarrhea, nausea, and fever.
4. Indigestion: Indigestion is one of the common digestive problems, that cause stomach spasms.
Indigestion happens due to the stomach acid reacting with the mucosa or the sensitive protective lining of your stomach. (8)
As a result, you feel irritation, discomfort, and pain in the upper abdomen.
Some of the possible reasons for indigestion are eating or drinking contaminated food, an infection and even some medications.
5. Heartburn: Heartburn or acid reflux is another reason for abdominal spasms. It is a widespread digestive problem.
An estimation by The American College of Gastroenterology shows at least 15 million Americans suffer from heartburn on a daily basis (9).
You experience heartburn when your stomach acid travels backward into your food pipe or esophagus.
6. Gastroesophageal Reflux or GERD : When you experience heartburn persistently or more than twice a week, it becomes GERD or chronic acid reflux (10). GERD may cause you a severe form of abdominal spasms or pains.
When you have constipation, you strain yourself to release the stool. This process may stretch your intestines and cause you lower abdominal cramps.
8. Stress : Postmodern world is full of anxiety, insomnia; social, and psychological stress. These conditions have the worst effects on your digestive health. Mild or chronic stress can lead to severe stomach cramps.
Harvard Medical School proves that the existence of ‘brain-gut axis’ or the connection between the stressful brain and an upset stomach, through their research. (12)
9. Menstrual Cramps: Menstrual cramps before or during your period can also cause twitching pain in your lower abdomen. Your uterus muscles contract and it may press the nearby blood vessels.
Thus there’s an interruption in the oxygen flow to the uterus. That’s why you feel severe pains in your stomach, the thighs and the hips. (13)
10. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS): IBS is a complication in your large intestine. It is due to infection, weak nervous system, intestinal muscle contractions and changes in gut microflora (14).
IBS can lead to stomach spasms along with diarrhea, constipation, and gas.
11. Food Allergies: Stomach spasms may also occur as a result of food allergies. You suffer from food allergies when your immune system reacts to specific food items that you consume.
There are 8 types of food items responsible for 90% of all food allergies: Eggs, Shellfish, Milk, Peanuts, Tree Nuts, Fish, Wheat, and Soy. (15)
12. Appendicitis: Appendicitis is an inflammation of your appendix tube in the large intestine.
You suffer from a sudden excruciating pain due to appendix inflammation. It is advisable to go for a surgery and remove the appendix when you diagnose this condition. (16)
13. Pregnancy: Abdominal spasms and bleeding are early signs of pregnancy. You experience the pains in the lower abdomen.
14. Hunger: You might have experienced hunger pangs at some point in your life.
When your stomach is empty, it sends a signal to the brain for food. You experience a twitching and cramping feeling in your stomach at this time.
15. Dehydration: Even a lack of liquid intake can cause your stomach muscles to cramp and pain. Because of dehydration, the body’s internal tissues begin to fail, and abdominal muscles are part of them.
16. Ulcers: Peptic or gastric ulcers are wounds in your stomach lining and small intestine. Helicobacter pylori bacterium, spicy food, excessive use of painkillers may cause you ulcers.
Severe stomach spasms are the most common signs of ulcers. (18)
Home Remedies for Stomach Spasms
Here’s the deal. Follow these natural remedies to cure your muscle spasms in stomach!
1. Warm Water Compression
Warm water is the primary home remedy for stomach muscle spasms.
Warm water compression will help to relax your stomach muscles and relieve discomforts. (19)
You can place a hot compress or warm towel on your stomach region to relieve pains.
2. Drink Fresh Aloe Vera Water
These can combat the bacterial infections and soothe the pains in your stomach.
Mix 4 tablespoons of fresh aloe vera gel with water and drink it every morning. You’ll notice the relief instantly.
3. Consume Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar or ACV is a ‘cure all’ home remedy. It has potential benefits for your stomach disorders as well.
The antioxidants of ACV are particularly beneficial to relieve stomach spasms caused by excessive gas. (21)
Add a tablespoon of ACV with warm water and consume it twice a day. ACV will reduce the gas in no time and relieve the stomach pains.
4. Drink Baking Soda Solution
Sodium bicarbonate or baking soda is not just a cooking ingredient. It has exceptional medical values.
In fact, baking soda can efficiently cure indigestion, heartburn and give relief from ulcer pains. Its natron minerals can neutralize the stomach acid and ease abdominal cramps. (22)
Mix ½ a teaspoon of baking soda with 2 cups of warm water. Drink the solution after your meals to get rid of stomach cramps.
5. Munch On Some Fennel Seeds
Fennel seeds can effectively treat your stomach disorders such as gas, acid reflux, etc. and relieve pains.
They come from the aromatic fennel herbs and are an essential ingredient in Asian cuisine. These sweet-scented seeds contain a long list of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and flavonoids.
Just munch on a teaspoon of fennel seeds after your meals to relieve stomach cramps.
6. Have Some Ginger
Ginger is an easy to reach kitchen ingredient at your home. From ancient time onwards, it is a popular home remedy for stomach disorders and pains.
The anti-inflammatory properties of ginger can soothe the stomach muscles cramps and fight off infections. (23)
Suck and munch on a piece of ginger or make yourself a cup of ginger tea to benefit from this miracle ingredient.
7. A Cup Of Yogurt To Keep Away Muscle Spasms
Yogurt has probiotic properties that are great for muscle spasms in stomach. These can help ease the discomforts and pains in the digestive tracts.
Yogurt is a very potent agent to treat indigestion. (24)
Help yourself with a cup of yogurt after each meal to boost your digestive system.
8. Chew or Brew Some Peppermint Leaves
Peppermint is the natural source of analgesic properties to relieve stomach muscle spasms. These menthol leaves are a great remedy for stomach upset and nausea. (25)
You can chew on a few peppermint leaves or brew them with your tea to relieve stomach spasms.
9. Drink Chamomile Tea
You already know that stressful life is a prominent cause of muscle spasms in stomach. Chamomile tea is an antidepressant and can deal with your stress as well. (26)
Drink a cup of chamomile tea before you go to bed every night. You’ll see an excellent result in few days.
10. Massage The Stomach Muscles
Massaging can do miracles for your stomach muscle spasms (27). Stomach spasms can also be the result of stress or strain in your stomach area.
To get relief from the pain, you can gently massage your stomach muscles to help them relax.
Ample amount of rest can be the solution to many health problems (28). You can also get relief from muscle spasms in stomach by treating yourself with proper rest.
As stomach muscle spasms can also occur due to excessive stress or too much exercise, a few days of resting can stop the spasms.
Tips for Preventing Muscle Spasms in Stomach
In case you are suffering from abdominal pains because of indigestion, stress, heartburn, gas, constipation, etc. the following tips can help you prevent it.
- Drink enough water throughout the day. If you are dehydrated, your body loses electrolytes. This results in bouts of stomach spasms.
- Maintain hygiene. It is essential to wash raw vegetables and fruits before eating them. You should also drink purified or boiled water. This way you can avoid inflammations and food poisoning. Washing hands before eating are the priority to prevent contamination.
- Fiber diet. Your abdominal health depends much on your lifestyle and food habit. You need to recheck your diet for avoiding stomach spasms. A low fiber diet may help you with gas problems.Whereas, increasing fiber intake can resolve constipation and IBS related abdominal pains.
- Alcohol and spicy food. Avoid spicy, fatty foods and alcohol intake if you are suffering from stomach spasms. These can worsen the stomach condition by causing gas and bloating.
When To See A Doctor?
You need medical attention for stomach spasms that come with inflammations and ulcers. Persistent stomach spasms are an indicator of some underlying stomach diseases.
It is advisable that you consult with a doctor immediately in such severe conditions.
It is essential that you don’t ignore a stomach spasm and learn the exact cause and treat it at the earliest.
You can treat such spasms at home with the above mentioned natural remedies.
If you have tried any of the home remedies mentioned above, share your experience with us. To ask any question, please leave a comment in our comment section below.