Gastroenterologists treat conditions concerning the digestive or gastrointestinal (GI) system of the human body. They are the specialist trained to manage common but potentially disabling problems such as ulcers, IBS, acid reflux, and hemorrhoids. If you are vomiting for no reason, you better set an appointment soon. If your bowel movement has become more frequent than usual, it’s time to see a GI specialist.
Essential functions of your digestive system
Aside from the conditions mentioned above, some of the most common GI problems include IBD (inflammatory bowel disease), polyps in the large intestine, bloody stool, and colon cancer. The gastrointestinal tract performs the complex task of processing food and absorbing it into the bloodstream so that the cells can use the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. Other than the movement and digestion of food and absorption of nutrients, the gastrointestinal system removes waste products of digestion from the body.
Whom should you call?
If any part of the system is awry, and if any function is compromised by an illness, the best person to talk to is an experienced GI doctor. They would know best how to help you. The mouth is a component of the digestive system. However, oral care issues are more of a concern for dentists.
Still, your trusted and reliable gastroenterologist must be consulted for any problems with the digestive tract. This includes the tongue, salivary glands in the mouth, epiglottis, the pharynx, esophagus, stomach, intestines, gallbladder, pancreas, liver, rectum, and anus. For instance, if you are looking for a facility that offers treatment for Crohn’s disease in Sandy, check out the local listing of GIT specialists in the area.
When not to delay a GI consultation
Sometimes, digestive tract disturbances resolve on their own. However, there are times when they recur. Some people experience gastrointestinal problems repeatedly and end up suffering from chronic problems that do not seem to resolve. You must not delay a medical consultation if you experience any of the problems below, especially if they tend to recur, or if you experience them in abnormal intensity. These red flags are swallowing problems, bleeding, heartburn, diarrhea, bloating, constipation, vomiting, abdominal pain of unknown origin, and sudden weight gain or weight loss.
Symptoms of gastrointestinal dysfunction range from mild to severe. Lactose intolerance is a problem that does not require treatment, but it can be bothersome. Irritable bowel syndrome is not just a GIT disturbance and would reveal negative results in laboratory tests. Yet, millions of people suffer on a daily basis from these symptoms.
Digestive tract diseases vary in characteristics and symptoms, but they affect the quality of life in a big way. If you cannot eat, process food, or remove food wastes from your body effectively, you are likely to experience grave discomfort. Moreover, your overall health and wellbeing will be compromised if nutrients do not reach the cells as they should.
Your primary care doctor would know when to refer you to the services of a gastroenterologist. New symptoms of gastrointestinal problems should not be ignored. Similarly, old and recurring problems should be given adequate attention and proper medical intervention.