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in 3 easy steps...

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Fill out questionnaire

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Get prescriptions to your pharmacy

Peace of Mind,
in 3 easy steps…
Step 1:
Fill out questionnaire
Step 2:
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Step 3:
Get prescriptions to your pharmacy

Abdominal Bloating

The human gut produces gas during the digestion process of food. This gas collects in the stomach and intestines. It leads to abdominal bloating as a result. But, some people are more sensitive to this gas. Thus, these people suffer from abdominal pain. They may also suffer from heavy belching or farting as well. The best way to relieve bloating is discussed in this article.

Becky Yoza
Hi! I’m Becky Yoza, APRN

So you have a Abdominal Bloating, we are sorry to hear that, let’s schedule a Video-Call so we can get you the treatment you need.

Abdominal Bloating

There are three primary causes for this condition. The first is due to a diet that produces more gas. Second is the swallowing of air while chewing food. Third is having bowel diseases or lifestyle issues. The best way to relieve bloating are through making changes to the diet. Additionally, consuming antacids and digestive aids after every meal also helps relieve bloating as well.

Diagnosis

Bowels contain gas which is a result of the digestion process. Some of the air which enters the abdomen while chewing food or drinking is also present as well. Aerophagia is swallowing large amounts of air. This happens when one eats fast or hurriedly gulps down a drink. Then, the air makes its way into the esophagus. Most of the air escapes when we belch or burp after a meal. The air that is unable to pass through belches results in bloating. This causes a hard and swollen belly as a result. Swallowed air along with the gases released from digestion passes through the anus. The air and gas passes in the form of passing wind or flatulence.

Certain foods cause gas when eaten in large quantities. Foods like broccoli, baked beans, and Brussels sprouts for example. This gas is mainly composed of carbon dioxide, hydrogen, and methane. It also contains traces of sulfur, which gives a bad odor to the farts. Gases are also produced due to bacteria that live in our gut as well. The bacteria help in the digestion of food. Abdominal bloating can be very uncomfortable. The stomach feels tight due to gas formation. This can also cause cramps and pains in the abdomen.

Symptoms of Bloating

Excessive and repeated burping is a sign of gas-related bloating of the abdomen. Excessive and repeated farting is also a sign as well. When the gas settles in the large intestine under the liver or spleen, it leads to cramps and pain as a result. So, a bloated belly causes discomfort. However, it usually subsides on its own in a few hours.

People suffering from ailments produce more than average amounts of gas during digestion. Ailments such as irritable bowel syndrome or gluten intolerance for instance. Irritable bowel syndrome is a common condition. It is where bouts of abdominal pain are linked to changes in bowel habits. Changes like constipation or diarrhea.

Causes

Causes Due to Food

  • Broccoli & Brussels sprouts.
  • Starchy foods such as potatoes, corn, and noodles.
  • Foods that are high in soluble fiber such as grains, peas, radish beans, etc.
  • Dairy. Lactose intolerance is when the body has difficulty digesting lactose. Lactose is present in milk. This can cause diarrhea, tummy pains, and bloating as a result.
  • Food sugars. Foods high in fructose can cause bloating. This includes foods such as dried fruit, honey, sucrose, onions, and artichokes. Sorbitol is another form of sugar. It is found in chewing gum and ‘sugar-free’ desserts. It can cause gas and give rise to bloating as well.
  • Side effects of Medicines. Excessive gas or bloating are side effects of common medicines. Medicine such as metformin for diabetes. Lactulose, which is a laxative is also another example as well. Take antacids along with medicines to aid digestion and reduce gas. Magnesium trisilicate is a common antacid, for instance.
  • Bloating is a symptom of diseases. Few diseases of the bowel like acute gastroenteritis are due to infection of the stomach. Similarly, few result in increased gas formation and bloating of the abdomen. Long term diseases like cause abdominal bloating in the patients. Diseases such as Coeliac disease (gluten intolerance), for example. Additionally, inflammatory bowel diseases cause abdominal bloating. Inflammatory bowel diseases include ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, or inflamed gut.

Causes Due to Other Medical Conditions

Other medical conditions that cause bloating are, for instance:

  • Diverticulitis. Infection of the large intestine.
  • Short bowel syndrome. A complication of bowel surgery.
  • Bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine. This overgrowth occurs as an aftereffect of abdomen surgery. It also occurs due to diabetes or diverticulitis as well. The treatment is usually a course of antibiotics like metronidazole.
  • Scleroderma or thickening of the internal organs and stomach lining. These leads to bloating, constipation and diarrhea as a result.
  • Ovarian cancer can lead to abdominal pains, bloating and loss of appetite as well.
  • Giardiasis is a diarrheal disease due to parasites known as Giardia. A classic symptom of this infection is belching up foul-smelling gas.

How it Works

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Laboratory Tests

Most people with occasional abdominal bloating symptoms do not need any tests. But, if the pain is unbearable then consult your doctor. Additionally, seek medical help as well if symptoms are re-occurring. Serious symptoms, for instance:

  • Persistent diarrhea with blood in the stools
  • High body temperature (fever)
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Difficulty in swallowing
  • Weight loss and loss of appetite

The medical tests may include, for example:

  • A stool sample. This is to check for traces of infection, blood, and high levels of fat (which causes poor digestion)
  • A test for lactose tolerance
  • X-rays of your abdomen
  • Endoscopy of your stomach using a tiny camera
  • A blood test for celiac disease and any other disease as well

Best way to relieve bloating

There are ways to relieve bloating. One can try the tips mentioned below to ease the condition of excessive flatulence and constant bloating.

Dietary changes:

  • Avoid foods that cause bloating at all costs. Even though allergy to foods can vary from one person to another, certain food can cause bloating. Foods such as milk and dairy products. Certain fruits and vegetables may cause bloating as well. Also, whole grains, artificial sweeteners, and fizzy drinks can cause bloating too.
  • People who are lactose-intolerant should avoid milk. Those who are gluten intolerant should avoid wheat grains and starches.
  • Probiotics or live microorganisms are helpful aids to digestion. Include probiotics in a regular diet. They are gut-friendly bacteria, lactobacilli or bifidobacteria which reduces bloating.
  • Include fiber-rich food in your diet. This may help prevent constipation and reduce bloating as a result. Fiber-rich food such as linseed and oats, for instance.

Regular physical exercise:

  • Daily physical exercise is very helpful to improve digestion and avoid bloating. For instance, walking and jogging are as good as routine physical exercises.

Medication

Another way to relieve bloating is through medication. Over the counter drugs like Simeticone, for example, may reduce bloating. This is usually in combination with a mild antacid to ease the symptoms. Charcoal preparations are also helpful to absorb the gas and treat bloating as well. This is good for people suffering from occasional bouts of bloating. In addition, eating peppermint or aniseed after meals also aid in digestion too.

Over the counter medication such as mebeverine and alverine are helpful. They ease the spasm and distention of the abdomen during bloating. Bismuth subsalicylate is another good medicine as well. It reduces the smell of gas passed through the anus.

Treatment of chronic diseases should only be under the supervision of a doctor. Chronic diseases like irritable bowel syndrome.

Medication

Often medication and lifestyle changes do not help. As a result, consider consulting a psychologist to undergo psychological therapies. For example, there are therapies like mindful awareness and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). These therapies are helpful for people that cannot control their diet. Also, it is helpful for those who fail to exercise and are suffering abdominal bloating. Consuming excessive air while eating can be resolved by a speech therapist.

 

 

 

 

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