Bloating, flatulence and belching
Bloating is the condition that occurs when the excessive gas accumulates in the stomach or in the intestines. It can also be called flatulence and belching. When the excessive gas builds up, the person usually has a feeling of heaviness in the abdomen and abdomen tends to swell. In this case, the person experiences bloating. On the other side, when the person expels the excessive gas from the intestine through the anus, it is called flatulence. Furthermore, the person experiences belching when he/she expels the gas from the stomach via the mouth.
Causes of excessive gas and bloating
Excessive gas in the intestines and the stomach is induced by several reasons.
- One of the major causes for the occurrence of bloating is swallowing of air. It is quite normal to swallow small amounts of air when we eat or drink, but when we eat rapidly, smoke, or gulp water, the indigestion of a great amount of gas occurs, thus causing excessive gas build up and bloating. When we swallow air in this manner, it usually does not travel to the intestine but it is often expelled out from the stomach through the mouth. Furthermore, since the oxygen from the swallowed air is absorbed by the lining of the gut, nitrogen from the air travels to the intestine and causes flatulence.
- Excessive gas in the stomach and intestines may also be caused by bacteria in the digestive tract. When the carbohydrates are not completely digested by digestive enzymes, bacteria assist in the process of making methane and carbon dioxide together with hydrogen, which are then ejected out of the body through the anus. The gas caused by bacteria is foul smelling since it also contains sulfur.
- Bloating may also be induced by eating hard digestive foods that are high in fat and cellulose, like beans, onions, apples and sprouts, and many other foods.
Other potential causes for the occurrence of bloating are gluten and lactose intolerance. It is also regarded that constipation and irritable bowel syndrome are also responsible for the incidence of accumulation of a large amount of gas in the stomach and the intestines.
Symptoms of excessive gas and bloating
The presence of great amounts of gas in the intestines and the stomach is manifested through several symptoms. The person with this disorder may experience abdominal swelling, pain in the abdomen and diarrhea or constipation. Moreover, belching and flatulence which are excessive are also the symptoms of bloating.