Symptoms of excessive gas
Gas is a normal, healthy feature of the digestive process. Burping and passing gas (farting) are also normal. If there is a disturbance in your digestive tract, you might have gas pain because the gas is not moving through your body as it should. If you have experienced increased gas or have a higher than normal amount of gas, there could be many reasons why this is happening. Read more to learn about possible causes.
Gas symptoms are quite normal. Usually, gas symptoms include:
- Burping. The average person burps around 30 times a day.
- Bloating. If you are bloated, then your stomach swells. You may also feel pain or discomfort.
- Passing gas. Usually, you will pass gas around eight to 14 times a day. However, some experts say that up to 25 a day can be normal. Excess gas is called flatulence.
In a healthy digestive tract, there are ebbs and flows in all of these symptoms. You should talk with your doctor if:
- You experience painful symptoms consistently
- There is a sudden change in your symptoms
- You feel abdominal pain
- You have constipation
- You have diarrhea
- There is a dramatic drop in your weight
You can swallow too much air when you:
- Chew gum or swallow candy
- Drink carbonated drinks
- Eat or drink too quickly
- Have loose-fitting dentures
Gas is also created through bacteria in your large intestine. Your gut biome is made up of viruses, bacteria, and fungi, which aid in digestion by breaking down carbohydrates and generating gas. Some foods have carbohydrates your body can’t fully break down. Eating too many of these types of foods can create excessive gas.
A high-fiber diet can also create excessive gas. The intestine cannot digest certain fiber compounds, which causes the intestine to work overtime to break down all the fiber. If you are considering a high- fiber diet, you should incorporate it slowly.
What causes too much gas?
Even though gas is normal and healthy, certain conditions can cause excess gas in an unhealthy or painful way. Some of these conditions are:
- Lactose intolerance. Some people are unable to break down certain sugars in cow milk. Their inability generates quite a bit of gas.
- IBS and other GI issues. Irritable bowel syndrome, functional abdominal bloating and distention, functional constipation, and dyspepsia can cause excess gas. These issues can cause bloating, pain, and increase the amount of gas you produce.
- Issues digesting carbohydrates. Some people have problems digesting specific carbohydrates, so they have bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and other symptoms after they eat or drink particular food and drink. This is because sugars like verbascose, stachyose, lactose, fructose, and sorbitol are for your digestion to break down.
Other conditions that may affect your digestive system are:
- Celiac disease
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Intestinal pseudo-obstruction
- Blockage of the digestive tract due to other conditions
If you think you may have any of these symptoms or conditions, you should visit your doctor. Most commonly, conditions like this are treated through:
- Diet changes. One of the first things your doctor will try is to cut out foods that cause gas. This means cutting fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and high-fat foods.
- Over-the-counter medicine. There are quite a few medicines you can buy in the drugstore. These medicines can let people eat foods that would typically upset their digestion.
- Prescription medication. You may need to get a prescription from your doctor if you suffer from severe conditions such as IBS. You also may be prescribed an antibiotic for malign bacterial growth in the small intestine.
Cleveland Clinic: "Gas."
Mayo Clinic: "Gas and gas pains."
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: "Symptoms & Causes of Gas in the Digestive Tract."
Top What Is Excessive Gas a Sign of Related Articles
DiarrheaDiarrhea is a change in the frequency and looseness of bowel movements. Symptoms associated with diarrhea are cramping, abdominal pain, and the sensation of rectal urgency. Causes of diarrhea include viral, bacterial, or parasite infection, gastroenteritis, food poisoning, and drugs. Absorbents and anti-motility medications are used to treat diarrhea.
Digestive Disorders: How to Stop Gas PainWhen gas gets stuck in your digestive system, you may feel pain or bloating. If changes in your diet or other habits don't fix it, you might need your doctor's help.
Digestive Disorders: Surprising Reasons Why You're GassyEveryone has some gas. But you might have more than usual because of these things. See what the culprits are.
Diverticulitis (Diverticulosis)Most people with diverticulosis have few if any symptoms at all. When people do experience signs and symptoms of diverticulosis (diverticular disease) they may include abdominal pain, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, constipation, and bloating. Diverticulitis is a condition in which diverticula in the colon rupture. The rupture results in infection in the tissues that surround the colon. Treatment methods for diverticulitis include prescription medications, and in some cases, diverticulitis surgery.
What Is Gastritis? Causes, Symptoms and TreatmentGastritis (acute and chronic) is an inflammation of the lining of the stomach Some people have no gastritis symptoms, but when they do occur they may include bloating, belching, loss of appetite, nausea, and vomiting. H. pylori infection and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are the two main causes of gastritis. Alcohol, caffeine, and high-fat foods also can cause gastritis. Fried, fatty, and spicy foods, and alcohol aggravate gastritis symptoms. Other stomach lining irritants that aggravate symptoms include cigarette smoking, acidic juices, caffeine, tomato products, peppers, and chili powder. Foods that sooth gastritis symptoms, and that help reduce and stop H. pylori infection growth in the stomach include apples, onions, garlic, teas, green leafy vegetables, coconut water, and wheat bran. Gastritis is diagnosed with endoscopy, blood tests, or stool tests. Some people get relief from gastritis symptoms with prescription and non-prescription antacids, histamine blockers like famotidine (Pepcid AC) or ranitidine (Zantac 75), or proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) like omeprazole (Prilosec) and esomeprazole (Nexium). These drugs will not cure gastritis. Complications of gastritis include gastric cancers, MALT lymphoma, renal problems, and death.
GERD (Acid Reflux, Heartburn)Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), also called acid reflux, can cause symptoms like heartburn, chest pain, regurgitation, and nausea. Learn about causes, diagnosis, treatment and prevention.
GastroparesisGastroparesis is a medical condition in which the muscle of the stomach is paralyzed by a disease of either the stomach muscle itself or the nerves controlling the muscle. As a consequence, food and secretions do not empty normally from the stomach. Gastroparesis symptoms are nausea and vomiting; abdominal bloating, and pain can result.
GERD QuizWho is at risk for developing GERD? Are you? Take this quiz to learn what GERD is, if you're at risk, and what you can do about it.
How Can I Relieve My Baby's Gas?Many newborns, particularly between the ages of 1-4 months, suffer from gas. The taking in of air while feeding, allergies to food given, and/or improper burping practices may all cause the baby to be gassy and irritable.
How Do I Get Rid of Gas Pains During My Period?Gas pain during your period can be debilitating. Learn what causes gas pain during your period and how you can get rid of it or lower the chances of developing gas pain during your period.
Intestinal Gas and Gas PainIntestinal gas and painful bloating are common. Learn about what causes gas pain and how eliminating certain foods from your diet can help relieve symptoms.
Is Gas Common in Early Pregnancy?Gas is one of the unexpected signs of pregnancy. Gas is a common symptom in pregnancy, showing up around week 11 and lasting for the better part of the pregnancy.
What Causes Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)?Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a chronic disorder in which acid reflux occurs at least two times a week for several weeks. Acid reflux is a condition in which the acidic stomach contents leak back in the food pipe (esophagus) and cause heartburn.
What Helps With Bloating and Gas?What can you do to help with bloating and gas? Gas and bloating do eventually go away on their own. If your bloating only happens occasionally, make sure to chew your food well and sit up straight for a while after eating to help your body digest.
Why Am I So Gassy and Bloated?Bloating is a feeling that your abdomen is distended or larger than normal, but it does not necessarily mean that it is. Gas (flatulence) also can be a problem if you are bloated. Common, less serious causes of bloating are eating too fast, too much, or too many fatty foods; swallowing air; pregnancy; and menstruation. Cancer and IBD (ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease) are examples of the more serious causes of bloating. Examples of foods and drinks that cause bloating are high-fiber foods if you don't eat them regularly; eventually the bloating and gassiness will resolve if you eat them on a regular basis; fatty greasy foods, dairy products (for example, cheese, ice cream, milk, and yogurt); foods high in salt (for example, processed, frozen, and canned foods), and artificial sweeteners. Some doctors and other health care professionals recommend natural remedies like chamomile or peppermint tea or pumpkin to relieve bloating. Examples of OTC medicine (medicine available without a prescription) and other products that may relieve bloating and gassiness are, Gas-X, Beano, Pepto Bismol, Metamucil, probiotics, and Ex-Lax for constipation associated with bloating. If you have persistent or severe gas and bloating, and if you have any of these symptoms see a doctor or other health care professional, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, chest pain, bloody diarrhea, fever, or if you think you are or may be pregnant.