What Stomach Cramps Can Say About Your Health, According To Science

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Your run of the mill stomach ache probably isn't too much cause for concern. You ate something that didn't agree with you, and that's that. But if you have stomach cramps out of the blue and can't figure out what the deal is, your stomach cramps can actually say a lot about your health. From periods, to food allergies, to potential irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), your stomach gurgles and grumbles can be so much more than just the result of a tuna sandwich that's gone off.

You may need to pay attention to your symptoms closely on your own; a meta-analysis of 14 studies in 2014 found that in one-third of cases, people who went to their GPs with abdominal pain weren't given a diagnosis because the doctor wasn't sure of the cause. When do you get your cramps? Do you eat beforehand, and what's in those meals? Are they worse at a particular time of day, or at one point in the month? How severe is the pain? Serious stomach cramps and pain may indicate a medical emergency, so if you're in a lot of agony and your stomach won't stop contracting, get to the GP or the emergency room ASAP. Otherwise, here's what your stomach cramps may be trying to tell you about your health.