Formation of gas in the intestines or digestive tract is a normal phenomenon that occurs as a result of eating and drinking. In some cases, this gas may get trapped in the digestive tract leading to symptoms of pain, bloating and discomfort in the abdomen.
Symptoms and Causes of Trapped Gas
Swallowed Air. Aerophagia or swallowing of air is one of the most common causes of trapped gas. Small amount of air is swallowed when we eat or drink. Some people may swallow increased quantity of air due to fast eating or drinking, smoking, chewing gum, or wearing loose dentures.
Breakdown of Undigested Foods. Certain carbohydrates including starches, sugar, and fiber present in many foods are not digested and absorbed by the body, which are passed to the large intestines where they are broken down by harmless bacteria normally present there into hydrogen, carbon dioxide and in some individuals, methane
How to Get Rid of Trapped Gas
- Lemon Tea. Drinking hot lemon tea is an effective remedy in reducing your gas pain. The lemon stimulates digestion, and water flushes out the system of the toxins. Prepare it by mixing 1-2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice to a cup of warm water and have it the first thing in the morning.
- Peppermint Tea. Having a cup of peppermint tea will also help relieve trapped gas. This happens due to the methanol present in peppermint, which has antispasmodic effect on the intestines, thereby promoting the passage of trapped gas.
- Chamomile Tea. According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, chamomile tea can also help in relieving trapped gas.
- Ginger Tea. Ginger tea is an effective remedy to relieve trapped gas as there are certain enzymes present in ginger that help in efficient moving of the contents of the intestines.
- Move Bowels. Try and move your bowels to move the muscles of the intestinal tract, which will help the passage of gas. Moreover, by having a bowel movement, you will also empty your rectum of any store stool, which frees the passage for the trapped gas in the intestines.
- Other Exercises. Bicycling and basic yoga poses are good activities to decrease trapped gas.
Here is a video demo of yoga poses
- Pumpkin. Eating pumpkin with your meal also helps in relieving trapped gas. You can either bake or steam or broil it and have around 1 cup of it with your meal to reduce trapped gas.
- Baking Soda. Taking baking soda by mixing it in a cup of warm water also helps in relieving trapped gas.
- Activated Charcoal. You can also take activated charcoal to get rid of trapped intestinal gas. However, do consult your physician and read the label on the bottle to determine whether it would be effective for you or not.
- Caraway. Eating a small amount (usually a pinch) of caraway seeds is very effective in relieving trapped gas. You can also eat a few caraway crackers instead.
How to Avoid Trapped Gas
Avoid Gas-causing Foods
Avoid foods that are known to cause gas such as onions, cabbage, beans, apples, whole grains and bananas. Instead of avoiding them altogether, you can eat smaller portions. You can also take note of foods that are causing excessive gas formation when you eat them and avoid such foods.
Take a Probiotic Supplement
You should eat a probiotic supplement regularly. Probiotics are live good bacteria that help maintain the balance between good and bad bacteria in the intestines. Probiotics will help replenish the good bacteria, thereby promoting digestion.
Chew Food Thoroughly
You should always chew your good thoroughly and into smaller pieces as that will help the food to be digested completely. This will help decrease the formation of gas, which will then not get trapped in your digestive tract.
Take a Walk after Eating
According to Medline-Plus taking a 15-minute walk after eating helps in relieving the discomfort and pain associated with trapped gas. Walking after a meal also aids digestion, thereby preventing excessive gas formation.