Definition Belching is the act of bringing up air from the stomach. It produces a characteristic (typical) sound. Alternative Names Burping; Eructation; Gas - belching Considerations Belching is most often a normal process. The purpose of belching is to release air from the stomach. Every time you swallow, you also swallow air, along with fluid or food. As the air builds up in the upper stomach, it causes stretching of the stomach that triggers the lower esophageal sphincter muscle to relax. This lets air escape up the esophagus and out the mouth. Excessive or repeated belching may be caused by unconsciously swallowing air (aerophagia). Depending on the cause, belching may change in duration and intensity. Symptoms such as nausea, dyspepsia , and heartburn may be relieved by belching. Common Causes Pressure caused by the unconscious swallowing of air Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Cough, cold and flu season has arrived for most of the northern half of America. Doctor's offices are busier trying to squeeze patients in for sick visits. Emergency departments and Urgent Care Centers are shuffling patients in and out of examining rooms as they attempt to keep up with the increased demand for acute medical care. Some parents are getting less sleep as they listen to their children cough through the wee hours of the morning. Adults with upper respiratory tract infections try to decide whether they can afford another day off from work vs. go to work and feel miserable, as co-workers attempt to avoid them like the plague.
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A few weeks ago in a telephone conversation with my mom, she mentioned that one of my sisters had been having some problems with her stomach for the last month or so. Being concerned, I called my sister directly to talk to her about what was going on.
"I don't know," she said. I'm eating a healthy diet, but for the last month or so I've had a lot of diarrhea and even some vomiting. And my stomach hurts so much after I eat that I just don't want to eat anymore."
"What are you eating?" I asked.
"You know, healthy stuff. Fruits and vegetables and high fiber bread."
I explained to her that a healthy diet isn't healthy if it's making you sick. And if it's making you sick then you have to do something to figure out what is causing the symptoms. First, change what you're eating so that you can eat and get some nourishment into your body. And second, make an appointment with a gastroenterologist to discuss the problems.
"It's especially important to see a GI...
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