Excessive Belching, Burping and Bloating – Causes and Treatment

Causes of Belching and Bloating

Belching is the expulsion of gas from the gut through the mouth (eructations). Bloating may occur due to gas trapped within the gastrointestinal tract and this is often relieved upon belching.

Belching and bloating may be due to food, eating habits, or disorders in the stomach, small intestine or gallbladder. Bloating and gas may not always be expelled or relieved by a belch and other factors and conditions should be considered in cases of excessive bloating and gas.


Belching After Eating – Air Swallowing (Aerophagia)

This may be voluntary or involuntary. Air usually enters the esophagus and is expelled as a belch. It usually does not cause any discomfort or bloating.

Causes of air swallowing:

  • Fast eating or drinking
  • Mouth breathing
  • Nasal blockage
  • Hyperventilation related to anxiety
  • Regular gum chewing
  • Poorly fitted dentures

Treatment is by removing the cause.

Belching After Drinking

Carbonated drinks like soda and beer cause a build up of gas within the stomach and esophagus. This is then expelled as a belch. Certain antacids cause the formation of carbon dioxide as a byproduct to neutralizing stomach acid.

Treatment is by avoiding carbonated drinks and excessive amount of antacids.

How to Burp?

A simple method is to take several short gulps of air. The air should be swallowed partially so that it remains within the esophagus. Once there is sufficient air build up, the air can be regurgitated similar to a burp. This method should not be used excessively immediately after a meal as it can trigger vomiting at times.

How to Burp a Baby?

A baby should be carried upright and supported against the shoulder while a gentle rubbing motion is conducted on the baby’s back. Other methods that may assist is supporting baby in a 45 degree angle between the upright and supine (lying flat) position. Gentle taps on baby’s back may assist in this position to trigger a burp.

There is no set time for a baby to burp. Infants tend to swallow air when drinking so it is advisable that baby should burp within 20 minutes after a feed. However baby may burp well after this period quite naturally.


Hiatus Hernia

Hiatus hernia (Latin : hiatus – opening, hernia – protrusion) is the protrusion of a portion of the stomach into the thoracic (chest) cavity due to a weakening or rupture of the diaphragm. The protrusion and compression of the stomach causes a range of gastrointestinal symptoms.

The exact cause of a hiatal hernia is not known but there are many contributing factors:

  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Smoking
  • Physical exertion and strain (similar factors that can contribute to an inguinal hernia)
  • Chronic respiratory disorders that involve persistent coughing
  • Surgical procedures affecting the diaphragm
  • Congenital deformities (birth defects)

A person with hiatus hernia may be without symptoms for long periods of time. Acute symptoms include pain or discomfort after eating, sensation of ‘fullness’ after small meals, belching, indigestion, heartburn, acidic taste in mouth. This pain is usually felt in the middle of the abdomen or even cause gastrointestinal chest pain.

A hiatal hernia cannot be seen or felt from the outside. Upon palpation (touching the area with firm pressure), there may be some tenderness in the upper left quadrant of the abdomen. This correlates with the area of the stomach and diaphragm.

Diagnosis. An x-ray is usually sufficient to identify the hernia. Most soft organs and structures in the human body are almost transparent on an x-ray while solid structures, like bone, is opaue. In order to highlight and define semi-transparent organs on an x-ray, radiologically active substances, like barium, needs to be used internally. By drinking a barium solution, the gastrointestinal tract becomes more visible on an x-ray.

Picture of sliding hernia

Picture of para-esophageal hernia

Diet and Remedies in Hiatus Hernia

Carbonated drinks are to be avoided as they may cause expansion of the stomach cavity thereby aggravating the pain and discomfort of a hiatal hernia. Acidic foods and caffeinated drinks may also aggravate your hiatus hernia. Most sufferers note specific foods that aggravate their condition. These foods are often unique to the sufferer and each case should be considered on an individual basis.

Avoiding foods that may aggravate GERD and bloating is recommended.

Treatment of Hiatus Hernia

A paraesophageal hernia can be corrected surgically. More about hiatus hernia.


H. Pylori Infection

Helicobacter pylori is a bacterial species that infects the stomach causing an increase in gastric acid and damaging the lining of the stomach. H.pylori infection may contribute to belching and bloating as the bacteria produces and metabolizes ammonia resulting in the release of carbon dioxide. This production and metabolism of urea by the H.pylori bacteria is the chemical method by which it survives in the gastric acid of the stomach. In chronic infections, the large population of the H.pylori bacteria can contribute to small but significant quantities of carbon dioxide gas within the stomach. H.pylori infection often causes peptic ulcers.

Diagnosis of H.pylori

H. pylori can be diagnosed with a range of tests using blood, breath and stool samples. Antibodies to H.pylori within your blood sample can indicate a current or previous H.pylori infection. A breath test is more reliable to indicate a current H.pylori infection as the presence of urea in the expelled breath can indicate the presence of the H.pylori bacteria. A stool sample may be useful for antigen testing to identify a current H.pylori infection. A biopsy of the gastric mucosa is one of the most effective methods to identify H.pylori infection but is not often the first choice of testing due to the invasive procedure that has to be conduted in a suitable clinic or hospital.

Diet and Remedies in H. Pylori Infection

Essential oils should be used cautiously and should not be used internally in it original distilled state. Garlic has shown to be fairly effective in treating H.pylori infection when used in conjunction with omeprazole (The Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy).

Treatment of H. pylori with Antibiotics

It is advisable to treat H.pylori infection with antibiotics in combination with proton pump inhibitors like omeprazole. The proton pump inhibitors allow the gastric lining to heal while the antibiotics kill existing bacteria and prevent further growth of the bacterial population.

Treatment is fairly successful but a proton pump inhibitor may have to be used for a period of time after the infection for maximum benefit. The chances of recurrence of the H.pylori infection is high and the case should be constantly monitored.

Antibiotics use may further aggravate the inflammation of the gastric lining and repeated courses may be required. Prolonged antibiotic use can also affect bowel movements and a suitable probiotic may be necessary.


Gastroparesis

Gastroparesis literally means paralysis of the stomach muscles and this prevents or delays the stomach from emptying its contents into the small intestine. The causative factor may affect the stomach nerve supply to the muscle or the muscle itself.

Causes of Gastroparesis

  • Diabetes (Type I or II)
  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Damage to nerve or muscle due to surgery or other trauma
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Pancreatitis
  • Scleroderma
  • Post-viral syndrome

 

Symptoms of Gastroparesis

  • feeling ‘full’ quickly or after small meals
  • nausea, vomiting
  • belching (foul odor of rotten eggs)
  • unintentional loss of weight

Diagnosis of Gastroparesis

It is essential to carefully diagnose gastroparesis as it causes similar symptoms to gastrointestinal obstruction due to cancer, pylorostenosis, or bezoar. A gastric emptying study uses radioactive material to monitor the flow of the stomach contents. This is useful in differentiating if the gastroparesis is also affecting the small intestine. An endoscopy may also be useful to verify that there is no obstruction by a tumor in the stomach or intestines.

Diet in Gastroparesis

A liquid or semi-solid diet is advisable and nutritional value should always be considered. Large amounts of fat within the diet is not advisable and fat should be avoided altogether as a precautionary measure. Fat is not well tolerated by the gastrointestinal tract and requires significant intestinal motility (peristalsis) to churn the fatty foods with bile and other lipase enzymes to breakdown the fats. Alcohol is not advisable in gastroparesis as it may further aggravate the delayed gastric emptying.

Home Remedies and OTC Drugs

Gastroparesis should not be managed without professional medical assistance. Immediately consult with your medical practitioner if you suspect that you may be suffering with gastroparesis.

Treatment of Gastroparesis

Treatment of gastroparesis may be through a combination of dietary changes, drugs, electromechanical devices or surgery.


Food Intolerances

Intolerance to certain foods

    may arise from disorders in the digestive or absorption process with the gut.

Lactose intolerance

    arises from the lack of the digestive enzyme lactase. A

hereditary fructose intolerance

    is similar to a lactose intolerance in that there is a hereditary lack of enzymes to metabolize fructose. A

fructose and sorbitol malabsorption

    may result in a reduced absorption of these carbohydrates by the gut thereby allowing intestinal bacteria to consume it. The consumption of the lactose, fructose and sorbitol by intestinal bacteria gives rise to hydrogen gas.

Symptoms of food intolerances and malabsorption are belching, nausea, bloating, abdominal cramps, diarrhea. A rare hereditary fructose intolerance (HFI) may cause more severe symptoms if dietary changes are not implemented. An excessive intake of fructose and/or sorbitol may result in vomiting, jaundice, fatigue, enlarged liver and seizures.

Diagnosis of food intolerances. Colonic bacteria consumes the undigested lactose, fructose and sorbitol producing hydrogen as a byproduct. This hydrogen is detectable by breath tests. A stool sample high in acidity may also assist with diagnosing a food intolerance. A lactose tolerance test may be advisable to establish lactose intolerance.

Treatment of food intolerances. A diet excluding these foods is essential. In lactose intolerance, dairy must be discontinued and a strict lactose free diet must be followed. Fructose intolerance and fructose or sorbitol malabsorption also require dietary changes.

Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO)

An increased population of intestinal bacteria within the small intestine results in an increased gas production within the gut. The intestinal bacteria are able to consume nutrient laden food which has not as yet been absorbed by the body. Gas is produced as a byproduct resulting in belching and bloating.

Causes of SIBO :

  • Diabetes (Type I or II)
  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Damage to nerve or muscle due to surgery or other trauma
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Pancreatitis
  • Scleroderma
  • Postviral syndroms
  • Intestinal Obstruction
  • Diverticuli

Symptoms of SIBO are belching, bloating, abdominal pain, flatulence, diarrhea, and symptoms of nutritional deficiencies.

Diagnosis. A fluid sample from the small intestine will reveal a large bacterial population in small intestine bacterial overgrowth. A xylose breath test can also assist with diagnosis.

Treatment. Oral antibiotics is usually effective in treating small intestine bacterial overgrowth. Nutritional supplements may be prescribed to treat nutritional deficiencies.


Biliary Stasis and Biliary Reflux

Biliary stasis is the reduction or absence of bile production or secretion into the gut. Bile is essential for the breakdown of fats within the food. Biliary reflux is the back-flow of bile up the small intestine and into the stomach and esophagus.

Causes of Biliary Stasis :

Causes of Biliary Reflux :

  • Dysfunction of the pyloric valve that separates the small intestine from the stomach.
  • Peptic ulcers
  • Cholecystectomy

Symptoms of biliary disease: pain in the upper right quadrant of the abdomen, nausea, vomiting (bile may be regurgitated in biliary reflux), belching, bloating, weight loss, anorexia.

Diagnosis of biliary disease is by endoscopy, blood tests (may reveal elevated enzyme levels), and magnetic resonance imaging.

Treatment is with surgery, drug therapy to increase bile production, drug therapy to reduce gastro-esophageal reflux assists with biliary reflux, discontinue any dietary or lifestyle habits that may be contributing to liver disease including use of drugs and alcohol. For more information on biliary stasis, refer to Cholestasis.

Related Questions and Answers

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Kya2728

    First you need to exclude any cardiovascular (heart and blood vessel) conditions. Change in position, inhaling and even eating can exacerbate these symptoms. Don’t focus too much on the gastrointestinal conditions only due to your history. Once cardiovascular and respiratory diseases are excluded then gastrointestinal conditions should be considered. A hiatal hernia and esophagitis may be two possibilities but you need to go for further tests. A hiatal hernia will account for most of the symptoms that you are experiencing but nevertheless, have a full physical and let your doctor make the final diagnosis.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Savvy

    There are number of causes of hiccups – some known and others are still a mystery. Spicy foods and certain preservatives are known to trigger a fit of hiccups but this is temporary. Depending on the areas of the brain that were affected in the stroke, the hiccups could be due to neurological causes which may never resolve. This is not to say that your mother’s condition is deteriorating. Only her doctor can assess her condition and make a decision. Hiccups are common in frail, elderly patients – especially those who are less mobile. Another possibility is that she is eating too quickly and swallowing air but then the hiccuping would only be in relation to a meal. Take your mom to a doctor and let him assess her.

    At the end of the day, if it is nothing serious then it is something she has to accept and not you. In frail and elderly patients, some of the major complications and side effects arise from home remedies and herbal concoctions administered by their children. You may mean well but you could also cause more problems. Also remember that as an elderly person who is so frail and helpless, she is not feeling too good about herself. The last thing she needs is for somebody to become irritated by something that she cannot control. On the topic of your mother’s diet, it is not very healthy. Maybe a home cooked meal would be advisable as there will be less flavorants, preservatives and colorants. You can help her with that.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Nancy

    It’s not a matter of trying over-the-counter products but seeing a specialist like a gastroenterologist. You will undoubtedly need an endoscopy. While your condition can be due to inflammation of the esophagus or stomach, there is also a possibility that there may be some internal bleeding which could account for the metallic taste in the mouth and nausea. Your other symptoms could be explained by a hiatal hernia but tinkering around with over-the-counter medicines for 3 years is a bit too long. Your condition may be complicating and will therefore need more costly and extensive treatment. Don’t waste time. See a specialist.

  • birdiebird

    Hello –
    For the past year, I’ve had chronic nausea and belching. I am not stressed/nervous, so I don’t believe I am taking in an excess amount of air when eating or drinking.

    The nausea can be very debilitating, causing me to lie down and miss hours out of the day. I am also experiencing chronic urinary tract infections.

    I have not lost any weight, and I have stayed at a normal BMI. No fevers or anything like that. However, I do have frequent infections, most recently a staph infection.

    Confused. Help?

  • Vicki

    5 days ago after eating chili dip with cheese, I took a nap. I woke with heavyness in my chest and unable to take a deep breath. I went to the Er they did EKG and chest exrays everything proved to be fine. Sent home with indegestion. Since then I can’t stop burping small little burps that don’t seem to relieve the gas. went to doctor , he sent me for a ultrasound of gallbladder. The technician did not see anything wrong but did see a lot of gas bubbles by my pancreas. Still waiting for the doctor to read the results. I am currently taking Zantack and gas ex neither seem to be working all to well. Is this something that will go away on it’s own? I’ve never had a history with this problem except I have noticed in the past I can’t eat macaroni and cheese some grill cheese sandwitches hamburger helper these foods give me severe diahrea with cramps no burping.Could the velveta cheese done something to my GI tract? I have pain in my chest at times, and I do feel bloated at times. The burping lastnight was so bad I thought I wasn’t getting air because I was burping so much. Please help thanks.

  • Ioana

    Hello hello,
    I would really appreciate if any of you could help me with this. So, I burp a lot after I finish eating, pretty much everyday. It gets especially bad if i get into a car, or lay down, or try to go to the gym. Sometimes, I feel acid coming up my throat, but no actual vomiting. This has been going on for more than three years now and no doctor has been able to help. It all started with me having a brief episode of losing a lot of weight fast (would be called anorexia, but I gained back quickly and have been in a normal weight since). I had an endoscopy about three years ago but they found nothing, and I am not dying to repeat the procedure. Acid blockers and anti-acids have not helped much. I think it’s all getting much worse: now the burping usually comes with chest pressure and bloating… Let me know if you have any ideas. Thanks!

  • Nubby

    Three dys ago I developed a thumping sound in my left ear, then yesterday I started having this sensation to burp often. I stretched and this sirring pain went thru my neck on the left side, it only lasted seconds, but it was there. I seeked medical attention from doctor regarding the thumping and was told there was fluid behind both ears, but not exessive and no ear infec was present. This thumping in my ear is driving me crazy. I do not experience any pain in my ear, justa lil pressure. Please help.

  • Nubby

    I forgot to mention, I had the Lap Band placed on my stomach a year and four months ago, and a fill last month, so could that cause some of the bleching episodes as well? The combination is a mystery and I would like to have some resovled.

  • jacqui

    Hi,
    I have been having symptoms of trapped wind, constipation and my whole digestive system feeling acidic,sometimes I feel like Im going to vomit from the pain. I get these symptoms the first three days of my period and this has been happening for the last six months. I am taking 112mg of synthroid for my thyroid.The rest of the month my digestive system seems fine ,I have 1 bowel movement a day. please help I just cant get out of bed for two days because of the pain.

  • pvramesh

    I have been experiencing continous belching for the past many years.Sometimes after food and also in empty stomach also.I don’t have problems in my regular motions.The treatment i take is having ‘Happi-25mg’.I get relieved but the belching occurs again.
    Will it lead to any other complications?I am also a vegetarian and occassionally takes omlettes or eggs.Pl advise.
    Ramesh

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Birdiebird

    First you need to test for diabetes and HIV infection. I won’t go into an in depth explanation about why I suggest this but it is advisable. You do not mention if you are male/female, age, any chronic medication/conditions etc so I cannot say much here. You also do not mention when or what eases or aggravates the nausea/belching so the possibilities are endless. The fact that the nausea is so debilitating as to affect your daily functioning means it should not be taken lightly. You need to see a doctor, undergo investigation and allow him/her to make a diagnosis. In terms of your nausea, it could be many possible gastrointestinal disorders and the lack of information would mean that I would be guessing at best.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Vicki

    The fact that the EKG and chest x-rays came back clear helps exclude serious medical disorders relating to the heart and lungs. Gastrointestinal chest pain can be caused by a host of other factors and I would recommend an endoscopy at this point. Your symptoms may be due to an H.pylori infection or even SIBO or even a peptic ulcer.

    IBS is also a possibility and the dairy, meat or chilli may be aggravating the IBS hence the bouts of severe diarrhea with cramping after eating these foods. IBS can also contribute to gas build up. See a gastroeneterologist, have an endoscopy and maybe even a colonoscopy if the specialist thinks it is necessary. I would also recommend a course of Saccharomyces boulardii, a probiotic capsule that you can get from a pharmacy. A five day course will help restore the ‘good’ bowel bacteria. A high fiber diet may be advisable but monitor it carefully to see if the fiber is aggravating the bloating and gas. Remove dairy, refined carbs (sugar, flour, pasta) and drinks with artifical sweeteners from the diet and take note if your condition improves. But schedule a visit with a gastroenterologist as soon as you can.

  • mom

    Hi Dr.!! Thank you for doing this for all of us. My daughter 25 year old has these things chronicly– gastroparesis, erythema nodosum, auto-immune disorder (undetermined, like RA) IBS, lactose intolerance, dysmenorrhea that causes anemia,fybromyalgia, migraines, great deal of pain in all her joints, long bouts of being sick, fatigued, and lathargic. She also is so sweet, smart, hard working, and most generous donor of effort to the community. Among so many things, even a year at a hospital, and she was a routine blood donor since about 16.

    She did finally make a mistake she regrets so much. She has been the dry driver 100′s of times. She hardly ever drinks. Much of the time she is sick. She never takes prescriptions and drinks alcohol. She has always been the one everyone else could count on, even strangers. Having a plan she did drink this night. A friend was going to be the dry driver for a change and she was left behind when she was in the bathroom. She was also to stay with them not driving home later. She had 2 alcohol drinks. She stayed at the bar several hours to sober up. She also had taken OTC cold medicine. She had never been told that alcohol or cold medicine could further slow down her stomach and gastroporesis interfere with breaking down the alcohol. She would not have done it at all. She is very compliant. Now we learn that cold medicine with alcohol causes sleep. And she nodded off at the wheel while trying to get to a gas station to wake up or rest. It was a rural area and too far to the station. She went across the road, regained control, and an officer saw her and she got OWI. She wasn’t warned because her GI is unknowing about gastroparesis further slowed by alcohol and that person will become more intoxicated over time than one with a normal stomach. She also was upset at friends forgetting her and because she was told grandpa would die in a couple of weeks from cancer. Attitude also increases intoxication. I did not know these things. She is grateful that she regained control of the car, no one was hurt, no property damage. Because of being sick from cold and crying because she was ashamed, she could not even do breathalyzer. She offered to be checked at the hospital. She may have become more intoxecated over this time. Could you explain this so everyone can understand this unexpected side effect and be safe. She has not drank any alcohol since(a year). She has been very sick this year from the stress. If you could email me she also needs a note from a doctor to explain it. I could explain further. My husband being in construction and out of work this whole year was also diagnosed ulcerative colitis and has been alergeric to 2 medications so far. From all of us out there thank you for your giving and teaching and sacrifice!!!

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Iona

    From what you describe, it sounds like it could be a ‘weak’ lower esophageal sphincter (LES). This is the ‘valve’ that separates the stomach from the esophagus. Food, drink and even air can enter from the esophagus into the stomach but with a properly functioning LES, the reverse should not happen easily.

    This may account for your acid reflux and it may account for the ‘chest pressure’ because sometimes heartburn does not feel like a pain. Gas production is a normal process and activity may increase the movement of gas through the bowels so this could explain why it occurs after gyming. With a weak LES, certain positions, like laying down, can make the movment of gas from the stomach into the esophagus much easier.

    There are many possible causes of your condition but I would advise that you look into this given that the endoscopy is clear. I assume that you are not swallowing air (causes listed above) or have any other signs and symptoms of the conditions above.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Nubby

    Yes fluid in the ear can create this dull thumping sound. Imagine the sound when you are underwater – same principle.

    You may not be experiencing an actual sensation to burp but rather the sensation to ‘swallow down’. This is a way that the body tries to reestablish the pressure difference between the middle and outer ear by sending air up the eustachian tube. Of course this will not work with you because there is fluid accumulation and obviously the tube is inflamed or the fluid would have emptied out. Your doctor is managing the fluid accumulation so just follow his instructions.

    As for the lap band surgery, yes, increased belching is possible. You should have been advised on a diet regarding foods and quantities so follow it closely. If the problem persists, then speak to the surgeon.

    The two conditions may not be related and the ‘sensation’ to burp could just be due to gas that is not being passed out easily as a belch possibly due to the lap band.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Jacqui

    Your thyroid could account for a ‘sluggish digestion’ which may be one of the reasons why you are experiencing these symptoms. Food is moving too slowly through the gut, allowing bacteria to break down nutrients and wastes over a longer period of time and this increases gas production within the system (byproduct).

    Hormonal changes during the time of a period also contributes to sluggish digestion and is one of the reasons so many young, menstruating women are constipated (they also suffer with malabsorption syndromes related to these hormonal fluctuations and cannot absorb iron efficiently). So it is possible that they thyroid problem is compounding a common hormonal related problem in women which is why you experience it in relation to your period.

    I am not sure of your age and so on but try getting some exercise, mild cardiovascular and some ab exercises, and you will find that you will pass more gas and have better bowel movements. Stay away from the ‘gassy foods’. Are you sure that the pain is due to the gas? You may have a gynceological disorder and be experiencing pain during menstruation. Don’t confuse the symptoms. I would advise that you consult with the doctor managing your thyroid problem and also speak to your gynecologist about this issue. They may advise a visit to your gastroeneterologist.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi PVRamesh

    I am a bit confused about your question – are you asking about complications due to belching or related to the medication you are taking?

    If it is due to the belching then I don’t think anybody can tell you this until you identify the cause of the belching and this would require repeated consultations with a doctor in addition to investigations like an endoscopy and so on. Once the cause is identified then your doctor could advise your on the complications, prognosis, etc.

    If you are asking about complications leading to the constant use of your drug, well possible complications from long term us is written on the information leaflet within the packaging. I am not familiar with this drug but from what I see on Google it is an Indian drug so best that you speak to a local pharmacist about it.

  • Dr. Chris

    Mom.

    Your daughter should be tested for SLE (lupus). Her doctor will advise her accordingly. This where any help I can offer you will have to end.

    I assume that you mean that your daughter needs a note for her legal matter relating to the DUI.

    Unfortunately we cannot get involved in a legal matter for a number of reasons.

    1. We are not the medical professionals treating your daughter and therefore cannot verify any of the information you have provided about your daughter’s medical history or current health status.
    2. A medical professional will probably have to attend the court hearing and explain to the court/judge as to how this condition may have been affected by the consumption of alcohol.

    We will consider writing an article about gastroparesis and alcohol consumption but I will not make any comment on this matter at this point just in case I am misquoted. We urge Health Hype readers, especially those using our comment facility, to please read our comment policy. This feature does not constitute a medical consultation in any way and we simply attempt to assist readers with pertinent information. An answer from any writer or member of the editing team should not be used to replace a consultation with a medical doctor.

    We understand that the recession, lack of health insurance and other factors may prevent you from accessing medical care but advice provided here should not prompt you to treat or manage your own case without medical supervision.

    For readers hoping to beat DUI/DWI charges, please do not post any questions relating to this matter on this website. These are highly contentious issues and we would not like to be held liable for either supporting or refuting your claims. This matter should be handled by your attorney in conjunction with your doctor. We will not be coaxed into commenting on a matter that may be attempted to be used in any legal defense.

    Mom, I hope everything turns out well for your daughter. Thank you for telling our readers about her experience.

    This matter is now closed.

  • gamy

    Hi,

    I am a 24 year old male. I have been on tetracycline for over a year for a skin condition on my head. Two weeks ago I had what was probably stomach flu as several other people at work had it as well. Since then I stopped taking the tetracycline and as of last week I have been experiencing excessive burping.

    My mother is celiac, has had H.Pylori and is very intolerant to dairy and other foods.

    I used to hardly ever burp but the past week it has been quite a lot at times and is sometimes accomppanied by stomach pain (from gas).

    Would you have any insight in to the reason for the sudden change?

  • wondering

    Hello,
    I am a female, 25 years old.
    I’ve been experiencing frequent belching for a few months now. It seems I must be belching about 30 to 40 times a day or more, and I never used to burp before. I also have some problems with gas, and I’ve noticed that my stool has become thinner and lighter in colour (a sort of yellowish brown). TMI I know! Sorry! Also, sometimes I become nauseous, but that seems to be relieved when I eat or if I use the bathroom.

    I am also burping up food when I eat and it burns my throat, like acid reflux, I guess?

    I am not overweight, so my doctors think that I am just going through some anxiety issues and they are upsetting my stomach.

    Lastly, I have a singular swollen gland in my throat. It’s super painful when I push on it – I’m getting it biopsied in a few weeks, but could it have anything to do with my stomach being upset?

    Thanks! :)

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Gamy

    The tummy flu can often upset the bowel movements even after you recover from the infection. The reason for this is that the population of your ‘good’ intestinal bacteria drastically diminishes and this is the most common cause for diarrhea or gas after the stomach flu. The fact that you have been on tetracycline for so long is another complicating factor. Speak to your doctor. A course of probiotics containing Saccharomyces boulardii may help and your pharmacist can assist you with this.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Wondering

    The neck lymph nodes are very sensitive to localized and generalized infections as well as other disorder so it could possibly be linked. Your doctor will be able to advise you further after the biopsy and other tests. A host of gastrointestinal disorders can result in yellow stool and account for your burping as well. It can range from gastroesophageal disorders to liver problems, IBS and even malabsorption syndromes. You doctors will need to do further investigations to confirm this.

    Other articles that may be of interest to you :
    Swollen Neck Lymph Nodes
    Yellow Bowel Movement

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  • peter10001

    Hi
    Have been experiencing lower abdominal pain mainly in the bladder area over the last 6 months. Initially I thought it was a UTI but tests came up negative, as did ultrasound of kidneys, urinary tract etc. The strange thing was I always felt pain in my lower abdominal area after urinating, followed soon after by needing to empty my bowels (nearly always soft stool/occasionally diarrhoea). Years ago I had a test done which confirmed I hd a ‘leaky gut’, however the gastro Dr at the time did not seem concerned about this and did not recommend any meds. Around the same time (6 years ago now) I had a colonoscopy which was also fine. Generally as the day goes on I tend to feel a little better, although I do often feel nauseaus, dizzy & more recently have experienced unusual amounts of burping, gas, stomach rumbling (from gas?), discomfort has been everywhere from low to upper abdomen, more so in upper right lately. Recent full blood count test showed a slightly elevated white cell count, otherwise nothing unusual. Would appreciate your advice. Thanks

  • peter10001

    Sorry forgot to add, I also have been getting quite a lot of reflux lately, esp. at night. I also seem to be very susceptible to getting infections. Once or twice a year I will get a fever with chills (while the rest of my family is fine). I am a 36 yr old male, non-smoker, non-drinker. 180cm, 86kg. Appetite is normal. Not sure if this is relevant, sorry for the length of the post.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Peter10001

    If I understand your correctly, your question is about lower abdominal pain but you have mentioned many points here, some of which are related. Firstly I would advise that you read the abdominal pain articles on this website. There are several of these articles covering most aspects of abdominal pain and your may find that useful. But I will address some of the issues you raised and help make sense of it.

    The urge to defecate after urinating is not as uncommon as you think. Most of us urinate while passing stool partly due to the action of the pelvic floor muscles and sphincters (a long explanation which I will not get into here). Similarly the opposite is possible – urge to defecate when urinating. It is also more often reported in patients with IBS and apart from being a conditioned reflex to some extent, it also has a lot to do with increase in internal pressure. If you strain when urinating (some people do) or sit down when urinating (some men do) then this could also account for the urge to defecate after urinating. The fact that it is a more loose stool does give some indication that IBS could be a possibility and your colonoscopy will be ‘clear’ in this instance.

    A slight elevation in your white cell count could be indicative of an infection that may have just passed or that your body successfully ‘fought off’. However it can also be an interesting of a persistent, low grade infection that is not apparent immediately and I would advise that you speak to you doctor about the possibility of HIV infection and different types of autoimmune diseases. Another consideration could be human intestinal parasites. Don’t focus too much on a slight elevated white cell count unless it is recurrent on consecutive tests. I would also advise testing for diabetes.

    I hope this information proves to be helpful. A “leaky gut” may account for many of your symptoms but not all. Refer to the links provided in my answer for more information but you need to speak to your doctor or gastroenterologist for further testing.

  • wharris0324

    as of a few weeks ago i started belching with a Bloating feeling after eating even the smallest piece of food.. drinking water, etc. i have gas more often.. and i get a pain between my breast and stomach. this is with all food with all drink at all times of the day. any thoughts.

  • wharris0324

    i forgot to mention, i am a woman between the age of 55-60.. in case that matters

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Wharris0324

    A couple of considerations here may be a partial obstruction of the gut. From the position you describe, the problem may likely lie at the junction between the esophagus or stomach. This obstruction could be due to some constriction (like in a hiatal hernia) or even a growth. Let’s not guess though. You need to see a doctor, preferably a gastroenterologist and have an endoscopy or any other investigations that they may deem necessary. It may even be a case of gastric ulcers or GERD but proper medical investigation will give a better idea of the situation. Speak to your doctor.

  • autoguy04

    i am 24 and every thing has been normal up until liek 3 days ago when i just got doen eating and then got this really bad chest pain in the right breast area and then i belched a lil and it kinda went away but now it comes and goes after i eat any thing and i notice i feel liek i have acid reflux all the time but i watch my diet so i am pritty sure its more than acid reflux ( accoriding the what i have looked up acid reflux i caused by lack of acid in the stomach mainly caused by over eating ) some times tums help and other times it doesnt and i was researching on the hiatus hurnia and i am worreid that this is the casue of it but i am thinking it is the worst one and not the sliding as every thing said the sliding really has no symtoms , any advice on anything to try ot help me figure this out wia witch one it is or how ot get it to just go away

  • autoguy04

    also i feel full alot of the time even if i havetn eaten and when i do eat i feel like to food is sittin in the throught

  • autoguy04

    also i have been gettin really gassy both ends , sorry for the differnt post i just want ot make sure i cover every thing

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Autoguy

    It sounds like acid reflux which is the result of increased acid production and acid climbing up the esophagus (food pip). Yes, it can go as high as the throat and the chest pain (refer to the article on gastrointestinal chest pain for further reading) will vary in sensation – from a burning sensation to tightness and sharp pain. Don’t rush to the conclusion of a hiatal hernia just yet. First exclude acid reflux. Speak to your doctor and he/she will prescribe drugs, other than just antacids, to help alleviate the symptoms. If you do respond to these drugs then you know that it is acid reflux. If not, further investigation, like an endoscopy, may be warranted but your doctor will only consider this if you do not respond to treatment. See you doctor or if possible, go through to a gastroenterologist.

  • Depressed

    Hi Doc. I was diagnosed with IBS and H.Pylori infection after an endoscopy for both the stomach and bowel. I finished the course of antibiotics for H.pylori and was tested negative for the blowing test after that. However, I am still suffering from bloating and belching all the time. In addition, I feel very tired all the time and experience occasional diarrhea, loose stools, and ,sometimes, muddy-like stools. I think I am having anxiety, depression, and high irritability. My shoulders and neck are always stiff and aching. Sometimes, I will have pain in joints too.

  • vic.d

    thank you for such an informative overview!my last episode of excessive belching,flatulence,nausea,vomiting,heartburn,diaherra,loss of appetite left me so sick and dehydrated i could barely get out of bed.i lost 30lbs.i am not lactose int.my gastro.dr. did upper and lower gi,stool samples and tons of bloodwork…said it was just my acid reflux acting up or my ibs or possibly a flu.seriously!? i was left on my own.eventually it passed but reoccurs occasionally.the excessive bloating,belching and flatulence are returning in full force and i fear the cycle will repeat soon.should i be searching for a new gastro?and if so,what questions should i be asking him?and what tests should i ask him to do besides the previous?thank you for your time!

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Depressed

    I assume your question is about your bloating and belching – these are symptoms associated with IBS due to the change in normal gut motility (movement of food and waste through the gut). Try a course of Saccharomyces boulardii along with a fiber supplement (not too high fiber). Speak to your pharmacist or doctor about this. Remember that your anxiety and depression should be dealt with as this can aggravate an existing case of IBS, as will any mental or emotional stress. Stiffness of the neck and shoulders is most probably related to your mental/emotional state. By the way, it would be wise to test for any types of autoimmune diseases as this could also account for much of your symptoms.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Vic D

    Your last episode could very well have been viral in origin and this does not mean that it will definitely recur. IBS and reflux are possible diagnoses as well and I would advise that you go back to the same gastroenterologist and report your symptoms rather than changing over now. At this point he may put you on medication and only if that does not relieve it and he is not prepared to go further in investigation or treatment, then you should consider another doctor. Many times a doctor may not medicate or intervene in a condition and prescribe conservative measures, like dietary change, in the hope that the condition will resolve. There is nothing wrong with this approach, depending on the medical condition in question and severity of symptoms. But on successive visits, he will consider intervention.

  • mom123

    What a great website! I am 45 and have struggled with flatulence for many years. I’ve always wondered if I swallow air when I eat (and probably eat a little too fast sometimes), but have never been able to figure out any other way to eat. (When I try, I feel like I’m holding my breath.) I do tend to eat a lot of sugars, along with the healthy stuff) and don’t really restrict my diet. (My weight is normal and so far my blood sugar levels are normal.) I have never been able to burp, but ever since wearing a back brace for 4 years in my teens and having constant abdominal pressure from it, I have frequently had a little growling noise, which is similar to a burp.

    I was diagnosed with severe hyperthyroid (likely Grave’s disease) a couple of years ago. I never felt good about killing my thyroid, so I have been seeing a family practice doctor who combines traditional western medicine with herbal remedy. I’m on a beta blocker to protect my heart and take other herbal supplements, in the hope that my thyroid will even out before it dies on it’s own.

    The last couple of months I have had some anal itchiness and last month my doctor gave me a probiotic and a topical treatment for it. (The doctor said it looked like just topical irritation.) I don’t go back for a few weeks, but the itchiness is still there. (Must admit I haven’t been the most consistent about using either.) However, ever since I started that probiotic, I have been having little burps every day, all day long (in addition to the growling and gas). I have been surprised by the burps, because I have never been able to burp. (I still really can’t do it on my own, they just come when they come.) Something has changed. I’m wondering if, like me, you think it sounds like SIBO, that has been building up for years, and the probiotic has pushed the levels over the top and started the burping?

    Do you think I need to see a specialist, or do you think I could just share information with the doctor I’m going to every couple of months at first and have her prescribe something and see if it helps? Thanks for any help or suggestions you can give. I think I’d almost give up sugar, at least for a few days, for some relief. Probably wouldn’t last that long, though. :D

  • mom123

    Oh, and one more thing is that if I do notice the burps more after I eat, even a small meal. I also get the hiccups if I eat too much. I’ve always had a tendency to get the hiccups if I drink anything besides water.

  • rbailey3

    I Have had burping for a while on and off. It started when i had surgery and couldn’t eat before it and before it i felt a pain and empty feeling in my gut. After i was so hungry i went to get crab legs it tasted weird. I then had burping and diareah for a week and was sick. Became better then had my wisdome teeth removed months later on all kinds of meds for a month due to removal of some of my jaw bone in bed for weeks. After that i was fine for months. And out of the blue i ate something that made me feel toxic for some reason and would belch every few 10 min or so. I would feel toxic sometimes and a little constipated and bloated. I started taking benefiber and some probiotics with lactobacillius from the pharmacy and it helped for a while to no burping. But then it got worse again too Prevacid and it helped for a while but then got bad again. I went to a Holistic Dr Pepi in CA over the phone spent almost $1000 she put me on Tricyline dietary supplements and I had an ovarian cyst so on Core Level Ovary dietary supplements. I started taking them 1 a day and it worked fine but then she had me take 6 each a day on both of them. One day i ate a taco pizza taco bell and it felt like a baby was moving in my stomach, felt toxic and sick. I went to get Prevacid and when i took it. I could feel it moving in my stomach like it was fighting something. Felt much better So i left her methods alone. I went to Walmart and bought a box full of vitamins, probiotics, liver cleanse, enzymes and it helped so much to almost no burping. But i had to keep getting it like 3 times $20 a box of vitamins. I finally took a cruise trip and at all good food on their and relaxed. Had some fruity liquir drinks and a great time. I had no problems at all on their, NO Burping, got checked no ovarian cyst. Came back and the symptoms were gone for 3 months. I bought a Health Master Blender to eat more vegs and fruits and I felt good slept better. I ate a buritto from the cafeteria and felt toxic again and the burping came back after 3 months. But i want to know how to get ride of it for forever. So now i’m a little fatigued, body feels tired, burping all the time, constipated. Like it came back again. I kinda feel like its anxiety, stress, need to eat more good foods again, like i’m not digesting everything when eating like it sits there for a while and feel kinda toxic. Drinkin water give me belching my goodness. Oh yeah i have a yeast infection every few months after i eat something to triger it and get these digestive issues. I usually just use a boric acid suppository and it goes away. But something i ate triggured this like the first couple of times and its like it takes months for whatever food triggers it to go away after i change my diet to just vegs and fruit and relax more. Weird one huh

  • Woods

    Hi, Doc

    My story is a bit long but I think most of the details is necessary.

    Everything started in mid-Nov when I found I had difficulty swallowing. I went to see an ENT who diagnosed me with esophagitis. I was first put on antibiotics then anti-fugus medication. The symptom as well as “white plague” my doctor found in endoscopy went away. However, I was left with this dry throat problem, which felt almost like a type was sticking to the back of my throat. This problem kept me trying to clear my throat all the time (by growling). I went to see a second ENT who suspected my problem (including the initial esophagitis) was due to acid reflux, even though I never experienced any heartburn. I was ordered to watch my diet and lift my head while sleeping). After a month, the throat problem did not went away.
    About 3 weeks ago, I started to have this terrible belching problem altogether with indigestion/occasional mild upper abdomen discomfort. It could happen anytime when I was awake but most severe after meals. The belching sometimes brought up part-digested food into my mouth. To tackle this, I was first put on Zantac (150mg x1/day) then Nexium (40mg x1/day). Neither medication helped me so far. Now my ENT doctor suspected hiatal hernia/H. Pylori. Do you have any suggestion as to going forward? Do you feel an EGD is necessary at this point?

    Thank you very much

  • Megan

    I hope you all can help me. I’m 25, 145, 5’5. I was 13 when I had my first endoscopy and they told me I had acid reflux. So for the past 12 years I’ve been surviving off pepcid, prevacid, zantac, tums, pepto, and mylanta. But recently it’s gotten to the point where that dosn’t help at all. My symptoms are an intense burning between my bellybutton and ribs, burping, extreme bloating of the stomach and severe nausea. I feel like an over blown baloon and the pain is unbearable. And it’s not gas in my intestines that I can push out, it’s trapped in my stomach with no where to go. They re-did an endoscopy and told me I have a hiatal hernia and gastris, in addition to reflux. And I have been on Kapidex for three weeks. However the foods that trigger my pain are ridiculous: bananas, raspberries, and almonds. Spicy foods don’t bother me at all! Last night I had a protein shake after the gym and felt like I was going to die.
    So I’m thinking maybe there’s something else they’re not seeing. Maybe it’s a protein absorbtion problem or the years of antacid abuse has led my stomach to no longer have the acids it needs. But I can’t afford for them to play hit and miss any longer. I’ve also had a productive cough for the past 4 months that I’ve chalked up to my efforts at quiting smoking. My diet is healthy as I have been on Jenny Craig since January and have lost 25lbs. But now that I’m healthier, things are worse. Any advice???

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Mom123

    You should see a gastroenterologist and probably have further tests including a colonoscopy and/or endoscopy. SIBO is a possibility and would account for many of your symptoms but once again, this had to be diagnosed by your doctor or a specialist. Hiccups and burping after eating does raise the issue of air swallowing and it is also important to remember that a thyroid disorder can cause many gastrointestinal symptoms. The symptoms you mention raises the prospect of many conditions and these can only be confirmed or excluded by testing and further investigation that is requested by a medical doctor.

    This article may also be of interest :
    Itchy Rectum and Anus

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Rbailey3

    Firstly you should see a gastroenterologist and have all the necessary tests. This is not optional but warranted at this stage. Juggling between different herbal and nutritional supplements is not the answer.

    It is obvious that your gut is quite sensitive, especially to spicy foods. Irritable bowel is a consideration here as they may be aggravated by spicy foods. Another possible issue may be your intestinal bacteria. If you are going to use a probiotic, speak to your pharmacist about one containing Saccharomyces boulardii. A lot of “alternative” probiotics use lactobacillus and this is not good enough to restore your normal intestinal bacteria. No comment on that detox supplement that you linked to here (link has been deleted). If you wish to know more information about a specific product, please direct your questions to the manufacturer or distributor.

    Bottom line is that you need to see a medical specialist.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Woods

    I would have suspected acid reflux as the cause of your esophagitis as well initially. Since you did not respond to the medication, your ENT will consider the next possible condition among his differential diagnosis and will have to confirm or exclude the diagnosis. This approach is correct so bear with him as he goes through each phase. Yes, I think the EGD is necessary and it should be the next step in investigating this problem. Follow your doctor’s instructions.

  • Kyle

    Hi Dr.Chris
    I have had excessive bloating and belching symptoms for 10 months. The first time i was diagnosed with Hp positive, then take the first antibiotics. After i took it, i was diagnosed Hp positive again and took the second antibiotics. The third time the doctor made me take a breath test and said I had SIBO, then i took the third antibiotics. Now the bloating is still there and sometimes there is stomach pain, not like acid pain but it associate with vigorous movement of the stomach. I doubt the Hp bacteria is still there cuz I used to take antibiotics a lot so i think it develop resistence. I just want to ask what if it resist to all kind of antibiotics? It already resists to amoxiciline, clarithromycin, flagyl, ciprofloxacin. Should i keep taking antibiotics?

  • srunicorn

    hi i have had bowel problems for 5 years now and my doctor gives me movicol to soften my stools and senna to help make me go. over the last year i have been having problems with something like a blockage. if i eat certain foods it makes me very windy and my bowels and colon grumble terrible with wind and then i cant go to the toilet at all or even break wind. it keeps me awake at night and i am in agony with the pain that comes in my lower back and the front of my abdomen. the last 12 months everytime i have the problem it now upsets my stomach and i excessively keep burping and get gramps in my stomach. i have changed my diet but i found eating any high fibre food makes me break wind and aggrevates my bowels aswell, and i dont drink pop, alcohol or smoke.i have never been a fat eating person.eg(margarine,lard fried foods) but i do very occasionlly treat myself to a small cake or a biscuit but nothing fancy.two weeks ago my gallbladder started hurting aswell and i had in my stomach aswell but it was beacause i ate some full fat homemade ice cream(i think). it all seems to be getting worse and always seems to flare up when i am in bed.
    my doctor doesnt seem to understand what i am trying to say. do you think it could be bacterium h.pylori?

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Kyle

    If you have taken the antibiotics as prescribed, then you should not be too concerned with drug resistance. This usually occurs in cases of poor compliance (irregular/incorrect usage). What you may have experienced is a recurrence of the infection. So the infection may have resolved with each course only to recur and therefore require another course.

    You should at this point consider seeing a gastroenterologist or if you have been seeing a gastro, consult with another for a second opinion. Let the specialist decide whether another course of antibiotics is required or not. Do not self medicate in these cases.

  • Dr. Chris

    Hi Srunicorn

    You need to see a gastroenterologist if your doctor “does not seem to understand” the symptoms that you are reporting. At this point, further investigation is warranted like an endoscopy or colonoscopy. The gastro will decide upon the most appropriate tests and investigations after assessing your case.

    Many gastrointestinal conditions can cause these symptoms and reach through each can be confusing. I do not suspect that it is just H.pylori although this may be a possibility to some degree. It may be related to your normal intestinal flora aka the ‘good’ bowel bacteria. This may be affected and ‘bad’ bacteria may have established itself within your bowels to some degree. A good probiotic containing Saccharomyces boulardii (your pharmacist will know what this is) may be helpful. You can try a 5 day course and see if you respond to this. The gas, aggravation after fiber and possible aggravation from dairy (ice cream=milk) could be related to the bowel bacteria.

    Another possibility here that may be complicating your case further is irritable bowel syndrome. IBS does not only result in diarrhea and constipation is common or the predominant symptom in some cases. This will also explain the aggravation to certain triggers foods, the cramping and so on.

    Consult with a gastroenterologist so that your case can be assessed more thoroughly.

  • scaremonkey

    Hi,

    I have been getting bad flatulence for 18 months and for the past 5-6 months also excessive burping. I am 22yrs old, male, relitively fit (6pounds over my target weight) and eat reasonably well (although I have a sweet tooth).

    I suffer with bad sinuses and PND, and also wear dentures, all of which can cause Aerophagia, however I do not believe this to be the root of the problem (currently having sinuses treated with steroid spray). I was also found to have elevated systolic blood pressure and an elevated heart rate (BP readings of around 136/60, resting heart rate around 80 bpm). I’m told again that this is unrelated.

    I can get anxious quite easily, but I feel that in the main the symptoms have caused my anxiety rather than the other way round.

    Symptoms (in order of how regular they are… most regular -> least regular):

    Excessive Flatulence, especially first thing in the morning.

    Burping all through the day, starting from few minutes after I wake up.

    Tiredness (feel like I am not sleeping deeply)

    Noisy growly stomach

    Chest pains just under bottom ribs, more generally on left hand side, but also sometimes on right, sometimes sharp, sometimes more of a pressure… definitley due to gas, burping relieves problem.

    Occassionally dizzyness /lightheadedness and sensitivity to really bright lights (although this is most likely anxiety)

    Have taken things like Rennies, Gaviscon and Windeaze, but nothing seems to help significantly. Had a blood test and all results apparently normal (although not tested for H-pylori). Burping gets worse with fizzy drinks… esp beer, cannot drink a pint anymore without continual small borderline involuntary burps – am avoidign all of them. Have also tried avoiding dairy products for 2 weeks, but no letup in burping.

    If anyone can help it would be massively appreciated.