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Swallowed Air

Swallowed Air

Overview

Swallowing air may cause bloating, burping, gas, and abdominal pain. Swallowed air that is not released by burping passes through the digestive tract and is released as gas (flatus).

Babies often swallow air during feeding. It is important to burp your baby during and after feeding. Swallowed air may cause a baby to be upset and have colic behavior.

Aerophagia is a condition where large amounts of air are swallowed. It occurs most often in people who are very anxious or who have mental health problems.

The following tips can help you prevent swallowing air.

  • Take your time when you eat and drink.

    You are more likely to swallow air when you rush through meals or eat on the run.

    • Chew your food thoroughly before you swallow.
    • Avoid carbonated beverages, such as soda and beer.
    • Do not drink through a straw.
  • Keep calm.

    Tension and anxiety can cause you to swallow air.

  • Do not chew gum.
  • Do not smoke or use other tobacco products.
  • If you wear dentures, make sure they fit properly.

    Have them readjusted if you have gained or lost weight.

Related Information

Credits

Current as of: March 20, 2023

Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board
All Healthwise education is reviewed by a team that includes physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, registered dieticians, and other healthcare professionals.

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