For many causes of stomach pain, curling up into a fetal position may work, both mentally and physically, to make you feel better.
Looking for a natural and easy way to help your upset stomach? For many causes of belly pain, curling up into a fetal position may work, both mentally and physically, to make you feel better.
Mentally, the fetal position is comforting and “a natural defensive posture” according to Dr. Bob Adams who specializes in family and sports medicine. He explains, “When we have bad news, pain, or something’s really stressful, we hunch up. It probably goes back to when we were in the uterus.”
Physically, there are many reasons why your stomach muscles might tear or tense up.
In cases of food poisoning or stomach flu, your brain sends messages through your central nervous system to speed up your digestive system and eliminate the offending toxins. While you can’t consciously control the smooth muscle in your digestive tract, the fetal position relaxes the surrounding skeletal muscles, which in turn lessens irritation to the smooth muscles. (
Another common cause of stomach pain is injury. Just like any other overworked or strained muscle, injured stomach muscles need gentle care and at least a few days’ time to heal. Dr. Adams recommends resting in the fetal position to help rebuild the muscles.