Causes of Belching and Bloating in Infant

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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 can happen after eating and after drinking.

Belching After Eating – Air Swallowing (Aerophagia)

It 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 

Fast eating or drinking

Mouth breathing

Nasal blockage

Hyperventilation related to anxiety

Regular gum chewing

Poorly fitted dentures

Treatment  

Avoiding the cause

Seek medical help in severe cases

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.

Burping

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.

Another method 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 definite 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.

 



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