In my pratice as a registered dietitian my patients sometimes come to me with symptoms of aerophagia. You may be wondering “what is aerophagia?” On Instagram @AndreaHardyRD, I talk all about what aerophagia is and some management tips to help you!

Aerophagia – is it causing your excessive burping, bloating, and gas? 💨⁠⁠
Aerophagia is the swallowing of air that increases burping OR makes its way through our digestive tract and causes bloating, gas, and pain. ⁠⁠
I see SO many people jump to SIBO when they burp or experience bloating – but it’s important to ask ourselves… is this more behavioural? ⁠Habitual swallowing of air can frequently occur, even without you realizing you’re doing it! ⁠⁠
Aerophagia can be exacerbated by:⁠⁠
🍽️ eating too quickly⁠⁠
🗣️talking while eating⁠⁠
🍹drinking through a straw⁠ or drinking carbonated beverages⁠⁠
🍬chewing gum⁠⁠
😮mouth breathing⁠ or a restricted breathing pattern⁠⁠
👤dysphagia (repetitive swallowing to get food down, like in EoE!)⁠⁠
Wondering if you’re a habitual air swallower?⁠⁠⁠
There isn’t a validated test for this, but a speech language pathologist can help assess for it! A simple, non-validated test described in the literature for seeing if you swallow air is to hold a pencil between your teeth for a period of time. You can’t swallow air when you do this. If the burping desists – chances are, air swallowing plays at least in part, a role! ⁠⁠
How do we fix it?⁠⁠
If it’s behavioural, working with an SLP on behaviour and proper breathing, and a psychologist can help as anxiety appears to play a role.⁠⁠
In addition – there are a few lifestyle things you can do such as:⁠⁠
– eating in a calm environment⁠⁠
– chewing food REALLY well before swallowing⁠⁠
– not talking while eating⁠⁠
– quitting smoking⁠⁠
– limiting gum & mints⁠⁠
– avoiding bubbly drinks and straws⁠⁠
– ensuring your CPAP fits properly if you have one⁠⁠
– diaphragmatic breathing⁠⁠
It’s not always WHAT you eat, or something like IBS or SIBO causing your burping and bloating!⁠⁠