Well, this is alcohol bloating. Bloating or swelling after drinking alcohol is a common side effect. This is where the term “beer belly” comes from. Alcohol stomach bloating is a typical sign that a person drinks heavily. While swelling after a long night of alcohol consumption can cause some temporary swelling, alcohol’s dense and heavy calories can lead to a build-up of stubborn fat around the midsection. But why does alcohol make you bloated?
So, why does alcohol make you bloated? While different factors come into play, alcohol-induced bloating is usually caused by the empty calories and carbs in alcoholic drinks. Cocktails and other similar drinks also contain lots of sugar, which can contribute to weight gain.
Depending on what you order, just one drink can contain 50 to several hundred calories and just as many grams of sugar. Alcohol is an inflammatory substance, which is why you may have experienced bloating after drinking alcohol, even if it’s just a night of drinking.
This inflammation is made worse by things mixed with alcohol, such as sugary and carbonated drinks, syrups, sweeteners, and flavoring. This combination can easily result in gas, discomfort, and even facial swelling. If you’ve ever experienced face swelling due to alcohol, you may have also noticed some redness, both of which are caused by dehydration, as well.
When you’re dehydrated, your skin and organs try to hold onto as much water as possible. This causes water retention, which can make you look puffy or swollen.
How long alcohol bloating lasts depends on the amount of alcohol consumed and how dehydrated the person is. Usually, the easiest way to manage or prevent bloating caused by alcohol is to drink a glass of water between alcoholic drinks.
However, it’s safe to say that bloating caused by drinking alcohol may last for a few days. The less hydrated you are and the more alcohol you drink, the more severe and long-lasting these symptoms are.
You should also keep in mind that any preexisting conditions, such as chronic gastritis or Crohn’s disease, can contribute to bloating from drinking. Symptoms of these conditions can last for months or years.
If you gain weight from drinking alcohol and wish to lose it, the duration of this process depends on how much weight you’ve gained, whether you keep drinking, your diet, and how frequently you exercise or engage in physical activity. While some people can lose a noticeable amount of weight within a few weeks – and reduce their bloating – this isn’t the case for everyone.
Alcohol bloating can be treated with antibiotics by targeting the H. pylori infection, a bacteria that commonly grows in the digestive tract, stomach, or duodenum. If you’re seeking medication, you should always go to your primary physician for any medication.
A doctor may also prescribe medications to protect the stomach lining and improve gut health. Usually, stomach acid can damage the stomach lining. Stomach acid often comes up as a result of alcohol-induced acid reflux and heartburn.
Antacids like Alka-Seltzer, H2 blockers like Pepcid AC, and proton pump inhibitors like Protonix and Nexium can also help reduce the harm caused by the build-up of stomach acid and reduce bloating. Lifestyle changes may also need to be made to promote weight loss, including cutting down on alcohol consumption.
Heavy alcohol consumption not only leads to bloating, but it can also damage the liver, the stomach lining, and even your memory. Alcohol also has a high potential for abuse, and long-term heavy drinking often leads to addiction.
Swelling may actually be a sign of alcohol abuse and may indicate a more serious problem caused by heavy drinking. If you notice that you’re always swollen after drinking, consider how much alcohol you’re consuming in one period.
Are you having too many drinks? Are you unable to stop yourself after a few? While bloating may seem like a casual side effect of drinking too much, if you’re a frequent drinker, be sure to stay on top of your habits to avoid problems like alcoholism.
If you’ve gotten to the point where you’re unable to control your drinking, then it’s time to get help. Our Texas treatment center offers alcohol detox and addiction treatment to assist patients in their physical and psychological recovery from addiction.
Once they’ve received medical treatment for their withdrawal symptoms, patients can then move onto our residential treatment program for one-on-one therapy options with our counselors. With the use of the 12 step program and other modalities, we identify the source of our patients’ conditions and teach them how to sustain their sobriety.
Whether you’re struggling with alcoholism or drug addiction, our specialists are here to help. Call Banyan Treatment Centers today at 888-280-4763 to learn about our drug and alcohol treatment in Texas.