On average, a person can fart 15 times a day and the number can reach 40 times that! Farts are caused by trapped body air and gas. Although normal, sometimes farts can make a loud sound and a pungent smell. That’s why, not a few people hold farts when they’re with someone else.
However, did you know that holding a fart is not a good idea? Yes, resisting farts can cause some major health problems! Resisting farts can cause bloating and make the stomach uncomfortable. “Excessive gas buildup in the intestines can cause bloating and the stomach emits a gurgling sound,” said Gill Hart, scientific director of YorkTest Laboratories.
Farting Is the Body’s Natural Way to Expel Harmful Gases
Farts are gases released from the digestive tract. The intestine produces gas from the waste of bacteria that digest food. The gas moves around the colon and accumulates in the rectum. When the volume is large enough, it can trigger relaxation of the sfingter ani, allowing the release of gas through the anus. Excessive amounts of gas can be produced if you consume a lot of foods that are difficult to digest.
The gas content in farts is various, such as nitrogen, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, methane, and sulfur. Hydrogen and methane make farting out easily, while sulfur causes farts to smell bad. So, farting is the body’s natural way to emit harmful gases. If you resist farting, it means you’re resisting the body’s natural functions.
By holding back the fart, you keep the poisonous gas in the body for too long, against the body’s desires. When resisting farts, it is possible that a person has a condition called diverticulitis in the rectum, namely the development of small pockets in the lining of the intestine and triggering inflammation. Although rare, the condition requires medical attention.
Gastroenterologist from the University of New South Wales, Australia, professor Clare Collins, says the gas in the colon won’t just disappear even if you hold it. “How hard you try to hold a fart, it’s definitely going to come out as soon as you relax,” Clare said.
Holding a fart for too long can lead to a build-up of intestinal gas that will eventually come out through an uncontrollable fart. In addition, if the fart is not immediately removed, the body will absorb the gas again and put it into circulation because it has no other choice. “The gas that is reabsorned can come out through the breath or belching,” Clare said.
The Dangers of Resisting Farts
Some studies reveal health risks and complications if a person withholds farts for long periods of time. Here’s the bad impact of holding a fart.
- Causes Pain and Heartburn. When you tighten your muscles while holding a fart, the pressure in the body will increase and cause pain, indigestion, and heartburn. In addition, holding farts too often can cause swelling of the digestive tract.
- Effect on Colon Health. Farts relieve pressure on the body. Resisting farts can irritate the colon and trigger hemorrhoids.
- Producing Compound Farts. Most likely, a person holds a fart because they are not in the right location or situation to emit gas. However, resisting farts only makes things worse because it will produce a pungent stench.
However, that doesn’t mean you’re free to fart anywhere and anytime. If you’re with someone and want to fart, go to the toilet immediately. It’s just that, if you can’t ‘escape’ from the situation, there are several ways to limit the sound of farting.
“When you can’t leave the room when you want to fart, immediately lean forward or quietly lift one buttock to the side to pull out the fart. And, do not forget to adjust the diet to reduce the chances of flatulence.