Do you ever wonder why your stomach looks bigger after you've eaten? That may be due to bloating. Bloating can cause your stomach to look bigger and feel fuller.
What Is Bloating?
Bloating is the swelling of your stomach. This causes your stomach to look bigger than normal. It can also cause pain and discomfort due to the distention of the stomach. Bloating can sometimes point to a serious health issue, but there is not always an underlying issue when it occurs.
What Causes Bloating?
Bloating is usually caused by too much air or gas in the stomach. This can occur by swallowing too much.
Some non-serious causes of bloating include:
- Carbonated drinks, like soda
Some serious causes of bloating can include:
- Liver disease
- Celiac's disease
- Perforated gastrointestinal tract
- The pancreas not creating enough enzymes
- Kidney failure
If bloating persists for an extended period of time, consult a doctor to make sure it's not something serious.
Who Can Treat Bloating?
A stomach doctor, or gastroenterologist, is someone you may want to seek help from if you experience frequent or persistent bloating. They will be able to examine and diagnose any underlying causes for bloating as they specialize in the abdomen area.
How to Treat Bloating
For any non-serious causes of bloating, there are not many treatment options available as it should pass on its own. Your doctor would most likely suggest you begin making changes to your lifestyle to prevent bloating in the future.
If your bloating turns out to be due to something more serious, it is possible your doctor may prescribe medication to help.
Depending on the underlying cause, you may be prescribed:
How to Avoid Bloating
The easiest way to prevent bloating is to undergo lifestyle changes.
Some recommended lifestyle changes can include:
- Don't eat too much; try smaller meals
- Refrain from foods you are intolerant to (e.g. don't eat lactose if you're lactose intolerant)
- Avoid carbonated drinks
- Take supplements to improve digestive enzyme production
- Drink more water
- Be more physically active
- Take probiotic supplements
Is Bloating Common?
Bloating is a common thing for adults, and even children, to experience due to things like eating too much or consuming too much soda. It becomes less common when it comes to experiencing bloating due to underlying medical issues. While it does happen, it is more likely to occur due to your lifestyle.