Pancreatitis is an ailment which is characterized by severe inflammation of pancreas. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the organ vulnerable to this disease, pancreas is a protracted organ that has several roles associated with digestive and hormonal system of human body. It is located at the rear side of abdomen just behind the stomach.
Pancreatitis is of two types; acute and chronic. Both types of pancreatitis share a common ground with respect to their cause which is excessive indulgence in drinking alcohol and gallstones. These aforementioned reasons alone are responsible for approximately 85-90% of affliction of this disease while the remaining 10-15% is attributable to abuse of medications, exposure to harmful chemicals, injuries, genetic diseases, infections, surgeries and presence of abnormally high fat levels in the blood stream.
Acute pancreatitis refers to the initial stage of this disease. The disease isn’t quite lethal at this stage which is evident by the fact that only 20% of attacks at this stage prove themselves to be lethal, the remaining 80% of the attacks are mild and generally considered harmless. These attacks span over a short period of time and the recovery period isn’t that long either since the pancreas eventually returns to its normal state after some time. The number of attacks vary from patient to patient, but recovery of pancreas from these attacks is almost inevitable unless pancreatitis develops into necrotizing pancreatitis which can prove itself be quite lethal and even fatal.
Chronic pancreatitis refers to advanced stage of pancreatitis following acute pancreatitis. If the damage caused to pancreas during acute stage results in the pancreas being scarred, the pancreas may not be able to recover from the attack leading to deterioration of glands over the course of time.
The symptoms of acute pancreatitis include;
- Discoloration of skin around the belly button
- Excruciating abdominal pain. The pain may surge suddenly or may gradually build up. The sudden pain attacks are usually very severe. The gradual build ups, however, too may build up to severe excruciating pain even though they start off mildly.
Major symptoms associated with chronic pancreatitis include;
- Excessive bleeding as a consequence of anemia
- Problems in liver
- Sudden weight loss
- Insufficient production of insulin in body leading to diabetes
Pancreatitis isn’t restricted to any specific gender or age group. Its occurrence is approximately 4.9 to 80 cases per 100,000 people. In the United States alone, there are around 80,000 reported cases of acute pancreatitis annually. Men are known to be more susceptible to chronic pancreatitis as opposed to women.
The diagnosis of pancreatitis, both chronic and acute, involves the same generic steps as in the case of other diseases. The doctor will require your past medical history after the analysis of which your doctor will perform some physical tests. Based on your past medical history and result of physical examination, your doctor will recommend you several other tests in order to ascertain the root cause of the symptoms.
Home remedies for pancreatitis
Although it is not recommended by doctors to resort to home treatments when it comes to pancreatitis on initial emergence of its symptoms, but there are some precautions and corrective measures that you can employ for reduction in pain and symptoms of the said disease. This raises the question about when to seek medical attention if you are suffering from pancreatitis. In most of the cases, the pain is severe enough for you to contact your local doctor. However, in mild cases, you should consider scheduling an appointment on experiencing of any of the following symptoms:
- Inability to take medicine or any sort of diet due to nausea
- Excruciating relentless pain not subsiding through the use of medication
- Difficulty in breathing
- Fever accompanied with faintness, weakness and constant vomiting
- Combination of pancreatitis with other medical ailments or affliction of this disease during the course of pregnancy.
Some of the most commonly employed home remedies include:
Dandelion is a herb renowned for its remedial properties when it comes to the treatment of pancreatitis. Dandelion herb is quite rich in Taraxacin is a bitter glycoside and it is the presence of this glycoside that makes dandelion a potent ingredient and effective tonic for liver, stomach and pancreas. It is quite often used for cleansing liver and blood and also aids in digestion of food. The cleansing of liver helps in boosting the production of bile which in turn reduces the pressure on pancreas leading to a quick and early recovery of pancreas. This helps alleviate the resulting abdominal pain. The use of Dandelion for strengthening and revitalizing liver and pancreas is backed by a number of scientific studies and researches. The dandelion tonic can be prepared for intake by boiling 2-3 teaspoons of chopped dandelion in water equivalent to amount of one glass.
Turmeric power is one of the most potent ingredients when it comes to combating the bacteria responsible for afflicting this ailment owing to its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. It is also known to be an effective immune boosting ingredient. It is one of the most commonly employed ingredients in household owing to its utilization in homemade recipes especially Indian cuisine.
Turmeric is the sole source of curcumin which is backed by scientific evidence in its ability to prevent the pancreatitis from developing in to acute or chronic pancreatitis. Turmeric is also known to hamper the damage caused by the said disease to lungs and pancreas owing to its medicinal properties. Moreover, the innate richness of turmeric in Vitamin C also makes it an effective ingredient in helping the body recover from the damage caused by pancreatitis.
3: Olive Oil
Like turmeric, it is also one of the ingredients most commonly employed in household cooking. Its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties render it an effective healer in treatment of olive oil. It is used for reduction in inflammation and pain cause by pancreatitis.
It is recommended that patients suffering from this ailment eat food cooked in olive oil to alleviate the inflammation and pain as well as provide enough energy to the body for recuperation.
DGL(Deglycyrrhizinated Licorice) is one of the major bioactive compounds found in licorice. Its anti-inflammatory properties make it a go to ingredient when it comes to treatment of pancreatitis. The reduction in inflammation reduces the pain resulting from the disease by a great deal and its consumption also provides the body with the requisite energy for quick recovery of pancreas from the pancreatitis attacks.
5: Remain Hydrated
As is with the case against almost any ailment, increase in intake of water to keep your body hydrated can revitalize it and provide it with the energy to help you combat this disease. Water helps in providing relief from the dryness and pain which are the consequence of pancreatitis. Since pancreatitis results mainly from alcohol abuse, it is recommended to counter this harmful effect of alcohol consumption through increase in intake of water.