Stomach pain is often experienced by those suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). A first line of defense for belly pain can be as simple as heat. Pain in the belly can be helped with a hot water bottle or heated pads to help with some relief.
Second, there is quite a bit of evidence and research shown that peppermint oil helps with IBS pain. It works by making the intestine relax and as a result can help with stomach pain and bloating (1). Having peppermint oil in capsules helps it to not be absorbed in the stomach- but enter the intestines to do it’s work. These enteric coated capsules can be found in health food stores and pharmacies. The doses recommended are 180-225mg taken three times a day. It is important to take the capsule before a meal on an empty stomach. While peppermint oil appears safe , it is recommended they be used for no more than 4 weeks.
Finally, Simeticone (Gas-X, Phazyme) is an anti-foaming agent used to reduce bloating, discomfort or pain caused by excessive gas. It helps to break up gas bubbles in the gut. This medication should be used as directed by your doctor. For best results this medication is taken after meals or before bedtime.
- Alammar N, Wang L, Saberi B, et al. The impact of peppermint oil on the irritable bowel syndrome: a meta-analysis of the pooled clinical data. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2019;19(1):21. Published 2019 Jan 17. doi:10.1186/s12906-018-2409-0.