Gas is a normal and common part of the digestion process. A healthy adult passes gas anywhere between 13 and 21 times during a day. However, the inability to release gas from your intestines might also cause pain and bloating.
Overeating, chewing gum, drinking with a straw, eating certain types of foods, smoking, and swallowing air while you eat and drink might cause gas to build up in your intestines.
So, how to relieve trapped gas? There are many ways to go about this problem, and different methods work for different people. Keep reading to find the one that works for you.
1. Move Your Bowels
Along with moving the bowels, we often also release gas from our bodies. If you have a problem with trapped gas, you might want to go to the restroom and give the bowel movement a try.
If it doesn’t work and you can’t move your bowels at a given time, there are many other things you can do to relieve trapped gas.
2. Take a Walk
Physical activity, even something as mild as walking, can help activate the entire organism. This also includes the intestines and the digestive tract. So, if you were wondering how to relieve trapped gas, a walk around the block or park might be the answer.
3. Lie on Your Side
If you’re at home and don’t feel like going out, you can always curl up on a bed or a sofa. Make sure you lie on the side, with knees tucked to your chest. Slowly move your legs down and back up to your chest.
Give this method some time, as it might take more than a few minutes before it starts working. You can also try holding your knees to your chest. However, if it causes pain or if the existing pain intensifies, switch back to slowly moving your legs up and down.
While you’re lying down on your side, you could start rubbing your tummy with a hand. This might help the intestines move the gas faster.
If you’re in the office or at some other place where you can’t lie down, you can start rubbing your stomach while sitting or even standing up. Use gentle left-to-right movements.
5. Breathe Deeply
This method might work for some and might not work for the others. That’s mostly because breathing in excess air can sometimes raise the amount of trapped gas.
However, this exercise is very effective in relieving the pain caused by the trapped gas. Try it with caution and if it doesn’t help reduce the pain, move on to another method.
Mild exercise can help solve many issues and improve your overall health. Your digestive tract can also benefit from a regular exercise regimen. Mild exercise such as yoga can help relax the muscles in your stomach and make it easier for you to release the trapped gas. Yoga is especially effective after meals.
7. Eat Slowly
Some people get excess gas in their intestines because they eat fast and swallow a lot of air along with the food. If you usually eat fast, you should start eating slowly. Try to chew each bite at least 20-30 times before swallowing. It will help break the food down more thoroughly in your mouth. Consequently, the remaining phases of digestion will be easier and smoother, causing you less gas-related problems.
8. Stop Chewing Gum
Though they are often overlooked, chewing gums can cause bloating, trapped gas, and gas-related pains. When you chew gum, you swallow a lot of air that can get trapped in your lower intestines. It is worth mentioning that the sugar-free gums have artificial sweeteners that might also contribute to bloating.
9. Avoid Straws
Similar to the previous point, drinking milk, water, fruit juice, or a cocktail through a straw might cause excess air to gather in your stomach and cause problems. Next time you’re offered a straw with your drink, decline and drink directly from the glass.
Also, drinking from a can or a bottle can cause you to swallow too much air. Be especially cautious not to drink carbonated beverages in such a manner.
10. Drink Tea
Various types of tea can help with many health issues and problems. If you suffer from trapped gas, you might want to give anise, ginger, chamomile, and peppermint teas a shot.
You should have in mind that the anise tea also has mild laxative effects. Don’t drink it if you’re prone to chronic diarrhea. On the other hand, if you also have constipation, anise tea might be a great choice.
Chamomile has been used to treat the symptoms of bloating, trapped gas, and indigestion for centuries. If you opt for it, drink it before going to bed.
11. Eat Fennel Seeds
In addition to the mentioned teas, fennel seeds have a strong reputation for helping with gas-related problems. Though there’s no scientific proof, anecdotal evidence shows that one teaspoon should be enough in most cases.
You should be aware that some consider fennel seeds a bad choice for pregnant and breastfeeding women. If any of the two apply to you, it would be best to pick another method.
12. Take Peppermint Supplements
Aside from drinking peppermint tea, you can introduce peppermint supplements to your diet if trapped gas is bothering you. These supplements have traditionally been taken for a wide range of digestive problems, including trapped wind.
Be careful, though, as peppermint suppresses the iron absorption in your body. So, if you’re anemic or already taking iron supplements, you should avoid this method. Finally, peppermint supplements in uncoated capsules can cause heartburn, so take them with caution.
13. Use Clove Oil
You can also use clove oil to solve the problems with trapped gas. The oil is among the traditional home remedies for gastrointestinal problems, including bloating, indigestion, and gas. It might also be effective in fighting ulcers.
Consuming clove oil after a meal will raise the levels of digestive enzymes and help your digestive tract process the food better. Consequently, a smoother digestion process will also reduce the amount of gas in your intestines.
14. Use Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is effective in reducing intestinal gas. It is fairly inexpensive and available without a prescription. However, you should start slowly in order to avoid nausea and constipation.
Don’t be afraid if you see your stool turn black when you start using activated charcoal. It is a common and harmless side effect that should go away on its own.
The inability to pass gas can be quite unpleasant, especially when accompanied by pain, bloating, or other problems. Though usually not harmful, it can sometimes signal underlying problems with the digestive tract.
How to relieve trapped gas? You can try walking, lying on the side, massage, dietary changes, supplements, and exercise. If nothing brings you relief, call your doctor.
How to relieve trapped gas