Aerophagia

June 2017


Definition


Aerophagia is a normal phenomenon caused by an excessive absorption of air in the digestive system, especially at mealtimes. Literally meaning "eating air", it is a benign functional gastrointestinal disorder that may cause a lot of discomfort. Aerophagia is sometimes responsible for air coming back up the esophagus, commonly called "burping", and should not be confused with gastro-esophageal reflux even if the symptoms can appear to be very similar. Additionally, it is advisable to consult a doctor as soon as the phenomenon is coupled with a burning sensation.

Symptoms


Aerophagia is characterized by feelings of bloating and heaviness in the stomach. Digestion is difficult. It also causes belching (burping and reflux) and accidental flatulence, which can of course be embarrassing in some situations.

Treatment


On the spot, an abdominal massage to clear the digestive tract can relieve aerophagia. Infusions of carminative plants may also ward off an attack. Some drugs have properties to reduce the amount of blockages in the digestive tract. But people affected on a regular basis should certainly work on the causes of the disorder, to seek a balance in food hygiene, anxiety and stress. It is therefore necessary to adopt good rules of diet, especially to eat and chew slowly, and to remove some foods that promote flatulence, such as soft drinks, candy and chewing gum. If the flatulence is due to stress, it is important to take care of the anxiety disorder with adequate therapy. The patient can also try practicing a sport, relaxation...

Prevention


Prevention regarding aerophagia simply corresponds to adopting a healthy lifestyle, whether when eating (don't eat while standing, or while on the run in two minutes!) or performing physical activity. Some products considered as aggravating factors are also to be avoided: tobacco, alcohol, coffee...

Related

Published by Jeff. Latest update on June 22, 2013 at 06:08 AM by Jeff.
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