Medically reviewed by Sara Minnis, M.S., CCC-SLP — created by Donna Christiano — to update on September 18, 2018

What is it?

Aerophagia is the medical term because that excessive and also repetitive waiting swallowing. We all ingest part air once we talk, eat, or laugh. Civilization with aerophagia gulp so lot air, it produces uncomfortable gastrointestinal symptoms. These symptoms include abdominal muscle distension, bloating, belching, and also flatulence.

You are watching: The excessive swallowing of air while eating or drinking is known as

Aerophagia have the right to be chronic (long term) or acute (short term), and can be concerned physical and psychological factors.

We swallow about 2 quarts of air a day simply eating and drinking. We burp the end about fifty percent of that. The remainder travels with the small intestine and out the rectum in the kind of flatulence. Many of us execute not have actually a difficulty processing and also expelling this gas. Human being with aerophagia, that take in a the majority of air, suffer some uncomfortable symptoms.

One study published by Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics uncovered that 56 percent of topics with aerophagia complained of belching, 27 percent that bloating, and 19 percent of both ab pain and also distension. Research published in the journal case Reports in Gastroenterologyfound that this distension often tends to be much less in the morning (probably because of gas gift unconsciously expelled during the night v the anus), and progresses throughout the day. Other symptoms include audible air gulping and flatulence.

The Merck hands-on reports that we pass gas with our anus on average about 13 come 21 time a day, although the number is increased in civilization with aerophagia.

While aerophagia shares plenty of of the same symptoms with indigestion — mainly upper abdominal discomfort — they room two unique disorders. In the Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics study, those v indigestion were more apt to report the complying with symptoms 보다 those who had aerophagia:

nauseavomitingfeelings the fullness there is no eating large amountsweight loss

Taking in the appropriate amount of air seems straightforward enough, yet for a number of reasons, things have the right to go awry. Aerophagia deserve to be resulted in by problems with any of the following:


How us breathe, eat, and also drink play vital roles in the development of aerophagia. Some things that command to too much air swallowing include:

eating conveniently (for example, acquisition a 2nd bite prior to the an initial one is fully chewed and also swallowed)talking when eatingchewing gumdrinking through a straw (sucking color etc in an ext air)smoking (again, as result of the suck action)vigorously exercisingdrinking carbonated beverageswearing loose-fitting dentures


People with certain medical conditions who use machines to assist them breathe are much more prone to have aerophagia.

One instance is noninvasive ventilation (NIV). This is any kind of respiratory support that falls short of inserting a tube right into a person’s nose or mouth.

One common type of NIV is the continuous positive airway press (CPAP) machine used come treat civilization with obstructive sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a problem in i beg your pardon the airways end up being blocked while you’re sleeping. This blockage — which happens since of slack or improperly work muscles situated at the back of the neck — restricts airflow and interrupts sleep.

A CPAP device provides constant air pressure through a mask or tube. If the push isn’t set correctly, or the wearer has actually some congestion, too much air have the right to be swallowed. This results in aerophagia.

In one study, researchers discovered that 50 percent of subjects using a CPAP an equipment had at least one aerophagia symptom.

Other people who can need assisted breathing and also run a higher risk of aerophagia include those v chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and people v certain types of love failure.


In one study comparing adults with aerophagia come adults with indigestion, researchers uncovered that 19 percent the those with aerophagia had actually anxiety versus just 6 percent of those with indigestion. The connection in between anxiety and also aerophagia was viewed in another study published in the American newspaper of Gastroenterology.When topics with too much belching to be unaware they to be being studied, their burps were significantly fewer than when they knew they were being observed. Experts theorize the aerophagia might be a learned habits used through those with tension to cope with stress.

Because aerophagia shares several of the very same symptoms with typical digestive disorders prefer gastroesophageal reflux an illness (GERD), food allergies, and also bowel blockages, your doctor may very first test because that these conditions. If no physical cause of her intestinal problems is found, and also your symptoms are persistent, your doctor might make the diagnosis of aerophagia.

While part doctors may prescribe medicine such as simethicone and dimethicone to alleviate the development of gas in the bowel, there’s not a many in the way of drug treatment to act aerophagia.

Most professionals advise speech treatment to enhance breathing if talking. They additionally recommend behavior change therapy to:

become conscious of air gulpingpractice slow-moving breathing

A study published in the journal actions Modificationhighlighted the experience of a woman v chronic belching. Actions therapy that focused on breathing and swallowing helped her minimize her belches throughout a 5-minute duration from 18 to just 3. At an 18-month follow-up, the outcomes still held.

See more: How Many Of Dr.Seuss Books Were Turned Into Movies, What Is A Dr

Reducing — and even removed — aerophagia symptoms requires preparation and also mindfulness, however it have the right to be done. Experts advise:

taking tiny bites and chewing food thoroughly before taking another onemodifying exactly how you swallow food or liquidseating with your mouth closedbreathing slowly and also deeplybeing mindful of open-mouth breathingquitting aerophagia-producing behaviors, such together smoking, drink carbonated beverages, and chewing gumgetting a better fit on dentures and CPAP machines.treating any underlying conditions, such as anxiety, that might be contributing come aerophagia

There’s no need to live through aerophagia and its bothersome symptoms. When the problem can take its toll fee on the high quality of your life, there room highly effective treatments to limit its effects, if not banish the condition altogether. Speak to your health care professional around what remedies could work well because that you.


Medically reviewed by Sara Minnis, M.S., CCC-SLP — composed by Donna Christiano — update on September 18, 2018