Millions of people are bloated right now. Are you one of them? Or trouble zipping up your pants after a meal? And sometimes you’re so filled with hot air (literally) you’re afraid to go out in public for fear of letting out some gas.
Bloating is common among both adults and children. It comes in many forms and most of them are digestive. In fact, bloating makes you feel uncomfortable in your own skin. Bloating is often accompanied by:
- abdominal pain
- excessive gas (flatulence)
- frequent burping or belching
- abdominal rumbling or gurgles
Why do you feel bloated?
Gas & Air
Gas is the most common cause of bloating, especially after eating. Gas builds up when undigested food gets broken or when you swallow air. You swallow air, especially if you are:
- eating or drinking too fast
- chewing gum
- wearing loose dentures
Hence, accumulation of gas and air can also cause bloating.
For some people bloating may be due to medical conditions and these include:
- irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- weight gain
- hormonal flux (especially for women)
- eating disorders
- mental health factors
- some medications
Treatments to fight or relieve bloating
If you still feel bloated, talk to gastroenterologist nearby. If your doctor finds a medical cause for your bloating, they may recommend medical treatments depending on your condition.
When to see a doctor
Consult your doctor if bloating is accompanied by any of the following:
- severe or prolonged abdominal pain
- blood in the stools, or dark, tarry looking stools
- high fevers
- worsening heartburn
- unexplained weight loss