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Suffering with swollen stomach, feeling nausea and light headed. Any suggestion?

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Practicing since : 2003
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i have been suffering for at least 10 days with a swollen stomach, feelings of nausea from time to time, not actually vomitting just once or twice with a little fluid not actual vomit, lightheaded dizzy feeling and now a rash on both arms....any suggestions?? i am under a tremendous amount of stress and dont know whether it could be the major cause, i am 52 ( 1960) and female...
Posted Thu, 22 Nov 2012 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 1 hour later
Hello and welcome to Healthcare Magic. Thanks for your query.

I can understand that you seem to be going through a tough time recently. Stress / anxiety can manifest with not only psychological symptoms, but with physical symptoms also. Especially, gastric disturbances are a common physical manifestation of stress / anxiety. So it is quite possible that your excessive stress is contributing to some of your symptoms like bloated stomach, nausea and light-headedness. However, the rash on both arms seems a little atypical of a stress-related problem. So, if the rash is severe or persistent, then I think you should get it checked with your doctor.

Here are a few simple ways of managing stress:
- Don't take too much which you can't handle. Take one step at a time. Postpone any major decisions.
- When you feel overwhelmed by the stress, tell yourself that this is just a passing phase and that you just have to 'stay afloat', till this bad phase passes away.
- Practising relaxation techniques like XXXXXXX breathing, listening to relaxing music, etc. can help relieve stress.
- Ensure that you get 7 - 8 hours of continuous sleep everyday. When you’re sleeping too little or too much, your mood suffers. So, get on a better sleep schedule by learning proper sleep habits.
- Follow a healthy lifestyle - with adequate physical exercise and a nutritious and balanced diet. This not only keeps your body healthy, but also helps your mind.
- Avoid alcohol, smoking or any other substances as they all have been associated with many psychiatric disorders, including depression.
- Avoid negative thinking and guilt feelings. Remember, your thoughts determine your emotions and behaviour. If your thoughts are constantly negative, it can pull you down and worsen your stress.
- Develop a strong social and spiritual support system. Have friends / relatives who you can trust and talk to regularly, keep up with social and religious activities frequently.
- Keep your mind always active and engaged - spending time with nature, doing tasks which you enjoy, etc will all help in avoiding depressive thoughts.
- Last, but not the least, seek help early: when you feel that it's getting too difficult to handle, please don't hesitate to seek help immediately. Early intervention by means of counselling or sometimes medication can prevent you from going into a major depressive episode.

Best wishes,
- Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Consultant Psychiatrist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Suffering with swollen stomach, feeling nausea and light headed. Any suggestion? 14 hours later
i have been to many psycologists however the due to my work load I do not have time to do things that i should and weekends, well i am in a very diffcults relationship that i cant get out of....i fell in love, he is totally unreliable, we cant make plans...every time i have said lets give it time apart...he convinces me that we should stay together, i am going around in circles with everything, from my house which isn/t mine even though i paid for it completely, and it is unfinished, the law is Cyprus doesnt cover for the private individuals, i am in secure as business is bad, my only daughter studied and then deicded she wanted to stay in the UK, as for sleep, unless i take a handful of pills i cant do that either....and i cant visit as she stays with her father so even if i pay for the airfare i would need a hotel and cant afford that!!

so i guess there is no solution......
Answered by Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar 12 hours later
Hello again and thanks for writing in.

I'm sorry to hear about your problems. I can understand that you must be going through a very difficult time.

It is obvious that currently you are under a lot of mental stress and tension. Since, you are already developing medical problems due to the stress, it is important that you keep your stress levels under control. Otherwise it would have adverse consequences not only on your mental health but also on your physical health as well.

Now, you mention that much of your stress is due to your partner's attitude and behaviour. In this situation, you must first keep yourself calm and composed in order to solve this problem better. If you become extremely affected, stressed out and depressed, then the problem will only be getting more complicated. You have to first accept the fact that it may not possible to change people or situations immediately. Once you are able to accept this, then you will slowly learn not to get so affected by your partner' behaviour and hence not get so stressed out. Once you are in a calm state of mind, then you will be in a better position to make the right decisions also, rather than just being carried away in a downspiral of problems.

Also, if you are so stressed out due to multiple problems then there is a risk that you can go into a major depression. If you are finding it difficult to cope up or handle your stress, I would advise you to see a psychiatrist for a detailed evaluation. If necessary, you may need medication for a short duration to relax your mind and control your anxiety. Counselling may also help you learn coping skills and stress management techniques.

Wish you all the best.

- Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Consultant Psychiatrist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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