Most people experience bloating at some point. Exercise, supplements, and massage can all help reduce bloating quickly, and simple lifestyle changes can prevent it from happening again.
Abdominal bloating occurs when the abdomen is full and tense. It usually occurs due to accumulation of gas somewhere in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Bloating makes the belly appear bigger than usual and can also be tender or painful. Water retention in the body can also cause bloating.
In this article, we offer techniques to get rid of bloating quickly and explain how to reduce bloating in the long term.
Quick tips to get rid of bloating
Bloating usually occurs when excess gas accumulates in the stomach or intestines. When bloating occurs right after a meal, it usually goes away on its own, but it is often possible to speed up this process.
The best way to fight bloating is to find out what is causing it. Common triggers for bloating include:
- Digestive problems. Constipation, food allergies, and intolerance can cause bloating. When stool builds up in the large intestine, it can cause bloating and a feeling of discomfort. Excess gas can also build up behind the stool, making bloating worse.
- Diet. Carbonated drinks, too much salt or sugar, and not enough fiber in the diet can all cause bloating.
- Hormonal changes. Many people experience bloating before and during their period due to hormonal changes and fluid retention.
There are many home remedies that can help manage the pain and discomfort of bloating. The following quick tips can help people get rid of a swollen belly fast:
1. Go for a walk
Physical activity can make the bowels move more regularly, which can help in releasing excess gas and stool. Moving the bowels is especially important if a person is feeling constipated. A walk around the block can also provide fast relief from gas pressure.
2. Try out the yoga poses
Certain yoga poses can position the muscles of the abdomen in such a way as to promote the release of excess gas from the gastrointestinal tract. It can reduce bloating.
Baby pose, happy baby pose, and squats can all help people relieve gas buildup quickly.
3. Use peppermint capsules
Peppermint oil capsules can also be helpful for indigestion and associated gas. Manufacturers typically market them as a treatment for symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), but people without IBS can also use them to relieve bloating.
Peppermint works by relaxing the intestinal muscles, which allows gas and stool to move more efficiently. People should always follow the instructions on the package. Anyone prone to heartburn may need to stop having peppermint.
Peppermint capsules are available over the counter (OTC) at drugstores or online.
4. Try anti-gas capsules
Simethicone tablets and liquid are anti-gas medications that can help remove excess air from the digestive tract. It is essential to always take medications according to the directions on the label.
People can find pain relievers at drugstores or online.
5. Try abdominal massage
Massaging the abdomen can help move the bowels. A massage that follows the course of the large intestine is particularly useful. Users can follow the steps below to do this:
- Place your hands exactly above the right hip bone.
- Rub in a circular motion with gentle pressure towards the right side of the rib cage.
- Rub directly on the upper part of the belly towards the left rib cage.
- Slowly descending to the left hip bone.
- Repeat if necessary.
If the massage causes pain, it is better to stop it immediately.
6. Use essential oils
A 2016 study tested the effectiveness of supplements containing a combination of fennel essential oil and curcumin in 116 people with mild to moderate IBS. After 30 days, people reported improvement in their IBS symptoms, including bloating and abdominal pain.
People should not consume essential oils without first talking to a doctor. This is because some formulations can be toxic or can interfere with medications, and there is no dosage regulation.
7. Take a hot bath, soak and relax
The heat of the bath can relieve a sore abdomen. Relaxation can reduce stress levels, which can allow the gastrointestinal tract to work more efficiently and help reduce bloating.