I had been suffering from excessive burping from couple of months. I started to feel very uncomfortable with my condition as burping in a place of work or in public was kind of embarrassing. The more frequent it became, it lead to burning sensation in my chest and I started getting more irritable with it.
But in my case, burping had one more dimension to it. One burp at the breakfast table was a real necessity. For my wife it was an indication of content and otherwise it would leave her unsatisfied. I could hear her grumbling, ‘you no more like my cooking, its better you start eating your favorite outside food as you were doing when you were a bachelor’ So, for me like friction in physics, burping was also a necessary evil.
Finally, when it became too much to bear, I said enough is enough and we decided to see a doctor. The next day we were at the hospital. When we had enough time waiting for our turn, I googled out burp. I found a few restaurants named burp with hundreds of likes. I showed it to my wife and said, ‘See, It isn’t as bad as I thought. Burp has commercial value too!’ She frowned.
The doctor called us in and he invited me to burp it out. I struggled to explain my difficulties as there were frequent interruptions. My wife being a dietician by profession started to accuse me of eating outside masala laden food and her side of the story was that the condition which I was in was all because of me eating outside and there was nothing wrong with her cooking. I sat there confused, not knowing whether I was being a victim of illness or an accused for a crime for which I myself was suffering the consequences.
The doctor patiently heard the different versions. After my wife’s accusations I felt he was being more sympathetic to me. I wondered if it was a solidarity that every married man felt while witnessing of fellow men being made to look like a culprit when he was supposed to be a just a victim.
The doctor took his time to explain us that in most of the cases burping is self made. ‘Burping is caused due to air being expelled out by the stomach through the food pipe. It is not an easy exercise; the stomach has to undergo energy consuming contractions to be able to do it. When such contractions happen, a part of the digestive acid gets pushed to the food pipe which causes the burning sensation. So, the root of the problem is in the habit of gulping air in’. He demonstrated that that he could also burp by taking in air. When I argued with him that it was not voluntary that I was taking air in, he told that ‘only breathing is involuntary and if you can consciously make an attempt not to gulp air in, you can come out of this condition’
So, when it descended on me that it was nothing but my habit of taking in air that caused the continuous burps, burning sensation and irritation, I started feeling sinned. For the next few days, when it was tempting to gulp in air, I consciously tried to avoid it and to my amazement, the condition greatly improved. Occasionally, I had burps but it ended up there without continuing.
It was a great relief, but the necessity at the breakfast table for a burp however continued!