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Can Constipation Cause Acid Reflux And Heartburn

Are Acid Reflux Disease And Constipation Related

Constipation and GERD? Magnesium treatment.

by Health Writer

Constipation is an acute or chronic condition in which bowel movements occur less frequently than usual or stools are hard, dry, painful or difficult to pass . Constipation and functional bowel disorders are more common among those with Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease . There are multiple known and unknown reasons why acid reflux and constipation often overlap.

One reason that acid reflux may cause constipation is that acid reflux medications can cause constipation . Proton pump inhibitors and antacids that contain aluminum can contribute to constipation.

Food allergies can be another reason that acid reflux and constipation often go together. According to the Asian Pacific Journal of Allergy and Immunology , cow milk allergy is responsible for approximately 40 percent of GERD cases and 70 percent of chronic constipation.

Delayed gastric emptying can cause both constipation and upper abdomen discomfort . The reasons that some have slower digestion are not always known.

Because constipation can cause or aggravate acid reflux, it is an important issue to address. You should call a doctor immediately if you or your childs feces are blood-stained or if there is a sudden change in bowel habits. Otherwise, there are several at-home treatments that may provide some relief:

  • Avoid cow milk.

  • Include foods high in fiber in every meal .

  • Eat yogurt containing probiotics or take a probiotic supplement.

  • Drink plenty of water each day.

  • Exercise 20 30 minutes each day.

  • How Gut Health Affects Silent Reflux

    Research shows that your gut health, specifically your microbiome health, may relate to reflux symptoms. One systematic review showed that probiotics seemed to improve the symptoms of GERD, including heartburn, regurgitation, abdominal pain, and gas .

    A meta-analysis also found that H. pylori, a bacterium that can infect the stomach and cause ulcers, is present in about half of LPR patients . However, some research shows that H. pylori can actually protect against developing acid reflux or esophageal cancer .

    We can tentatively suggest that working to reduce H. pylori and any other gut pathogens as well as supporting the beneficial bacteria in the microbiome with probiotic therapy may help improve LPR or silent reflux symptoms.

    Can Acid Reflux Cause Dizziness

    Dizziness and acid reflux are rarely associated with each other. However, personal accounts show that acid reflux, specifically GERD can also lead to dizziness in patients. This dizziness is often characterized as lightheadedness, weakness, and a temporarily blurry vision.

    Dizziness and Acid Reflux: Is There a Link?

    While dizziness is not often listed as a common symptom of acid reflux, a study suggests that there is a link between peripheral vertigo and acid reflux.

    Scientists suggest that patients who experience dizziness alongside their acid reflux may be due to gastric acids irritating the ear, which could lead to ear infections.

    The study reported that 77.6% of patients with peripheral vertigo were also diagnosed with acid reflux compared to 26% of patients without reflux symptoms.

    Although further studies are required to finalize the findings, the researchers suggest that reflux contents such as Hydrochloric acid and pepsin could get into the middle ear through the Eustachian tube and affect the ear directly. This can cause tinnitus or a perceived ringing of the ears.

    Another way acid reflux could cause dizziness is through bacterial infection. The bacteria Helicobacter pylori can travel further up the esophagus through reflux contents and reach the upper respiratory tract. This could cause scarred ear drum , leading to dizziness.

    Learn more: Can Acid Reflux Cause Sinus and Ear Problems?

    Also Check: How Soon Does Heartburn Start In Pregnancy

    What Is Diverticulitis And How Do You Know If You Have It Is It Preventable How Is It Treated

    A diverticulum is a circumscribed pouch or sac that either occurs naturally or is created by herniation of the first mucosal lining of the GI tract through a defect in the muscle wall layer of the intestine. Multiple diverticulum are called diverticulosis. When these diverticula get infected it’s called diverticulitis,” an acute, painful disease.

    Although the specific cause of diverticulitis is unknown, the development likely involves mechanical, environmental and lifestyle factors. Contributing factors include age older than 50, obesity, sedentary lifestyle, corticosteroids, use of NSAIDs, smoking, constipation and excessive alcohol consumption. Therefore, this condition is partially preventable by modifying these factors . In western societies, 95 percent of diverticula are located on left side of the colon.

    Mild diverticulitis is treated on an outpatient basis with clear liquids or a low-residue diet for a few weeks, as prescribed by your doctor. After complete resolution of the acute event, the colon should be evaluated by a colonoscopy, barium enema, or CT colography to ensure absence of other diseases of the colon, including cancer.

    Certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology, Dr. Razas professional interests and experience include:

    What Is Causing My Abdominal Pain

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      Abdominal pain is pain that you feel anywhere between your chest and pelvic region and can range from a minor problem to one needing urgent attention. Dr. Indran Indrakrishnan at Gwinnett Digestive Clinic in Lawrenceville, GA, offers the latest treatments for gastrointestinal conditions.

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      Constipation May Be Causing Your Gerd

      In the world of digestive problemsthose annoying ailments that hurt your stomach, chest, and throatfew are as frustrating as constipation.

      A heavy meal, however, can lead to digestive problems equally as annoying: heartburn, the burning sensation behind the breastboneand the main symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease .

      Could there be a link between these two seemingly different digestive problems?

      There are three key points to remember about constipation. The first is that it is a symptom, not a disease. The second is that it is defined by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, as having bowel movement fewer than three times per week. And the third is that in America, it accounts for 2.5 million physician visits a year. Essentially, constipation is temporary, frequent, and generally not serious.

      Benign as it may be, it can affect GERD because of the way it raises pressure inside the stomach cavity, increasing the likelihood to reflux. Moreover, if you are constipated, you can help ease the pain with many of the same methods used by those with GERD. This involves various lifestyle changes, such as:

      1. Eating more fiber. This is the most common cause of constipation. Since fiber cannot be digested, it passes right through you. The average American eats 14 grams of fiber a day, which is less than half of what is recommended by the American Dietetic Association.

      How To Relieve Stress Triggered By Acid Reflux

      Acid reflux is usually managed by antacids and proton-pump inhibitors . These medications neutralize stomach acid so that it wont irritate the esophagus. Problem solved. Or not?

      The main issue with these medications is that they only treat the symptom, not the cause. Besides that, they have all kinds of unpleasant sideeffects, especially in the long term.

      Depending on your condition, such medications might be required, let your doctor decide that. However, there is a lot you can do the help your body manage the symptoms.

      If certain foods cause acid reflux, try to avoid those foods. If stress causes acid reflux, try to alleviate stress. Easier said than done, a few tips might help:

      • physical activity
      • massage

      Also Check: How Do You Get Heartburn

      Can Acid Reflux Cause Chest Pain

      Chest pain is one of the most common symptoms of acid reflux. Chest pain related to reflux is also called noncardiac chest pain . Chest pain occurs during reflux episodes because the heart and the esophagus share a nerve network. Acid reflux, specifically GERD, causes up to 66% of reported NCCPs.

      Evaluating Your Chest Pain

      Since chest pain from acid reflux and more serious conditions such as heart attack are hard to distinguish, its important to know how to evaluate your chest pain. Chest pain from acid reflux often affects the sternum or the area below it called the epigastrium. Pain from acid reflux is often characterized as a sharp pain, which gets worse with coughing.

      Meanwhile, chest pain from non-acid reflux sources could be described as a deep, searing pain. Heart-related chest pain often radiates to other parts of the body including the back, neck, shoulders, and arms.

      The symptoms that accompany chest pain are also key in evaluating the nature of the pain. Gastro-related chest pain is often accompanied by burping or flatulence, trouble swallowing, bile regurgitation, and a burning sensation in the throat or stomach.

      Cardiac-related chest pain is often accompanied by numbness in the left arm or shoulder, shortness of breath, dizziness, and high body temperatures.

      Ways To Overcome Constipation To Prevent Acid Reflux

      Antacid, Constipation, Acid Reflux, Indigestion Doctors – Functional Medicine Doctors Ridgefield

      Any doctor will first prescribe changes to lifestyle along with the use of home remedies. If there is no change in the condition, then the doctor will ask the patient to opt for Proton Pump Inhibitors. Although the inhibitor is effective against GERD, constipation is the known side effect.

      As proton pump inhibitors show constipation as the side effect, an individual can control the constipation and prevent the acid reflux through a few methods. The following are the ways through which one can achieve this:

      Read Also: Things To Take For Heartburn

      Culprit: Pneumonia Or Lung Infections

      Signs: Similar to food poisoning, you may suffer nausea, vomiting and abdominal cramps. Often, with symptomatic gallstones, fatty meals may cause recurrent pain or cramping in the center or upper right of the abdomen, sometimes extending to the back or right shoulder. The discomfort tends to come and go.

      Who: Children and adults with persistent flu-like symptoms may have pneumonia or a lung infection.

      Take Action: Labs and a chest X-ray at an urgent care or ER may help diagnose pneumonia.

      Jaw Pain Is Strongly Associated With Two Conditions:

      Cardiac Problem: Heart Disease or Heart Attack

      Coronary artery disease over time.Source:

      TMJ Disorder

      Jose Larena/CreativeCommons

      A lesser-known cause of jaw pain is GERD or acid reflux.

      Chest pain that radiates to the left arm or jaw should be seriously investigated by a heart doctor to rule out angina or a heart attack, says Hugh Mai, MD, Director of Endoscopic Ultrasonography and Bariatric Endoscopy, Gastroenterology Division, Sinai Hospital of Baltimore and LifeBridge Health.

      Once a cardiac cause is eliminated, acid suppression should be tried.

      This can involve taking antacids or taking a medication that suppresses gastric acid.

      If either of these is successful in relieving the jaw pain, then the jaw pain may be associated with acid reflux as a referred pain pathway in atypical GERD.

      Dr. Maiis well-versed in the endoscopic treatment of GERD. LifeBridge Health provides the Baltimore community and beyond with a wide array of choices in health care services.
      Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. Shes also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.

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      Stress And Silent Reflux

      When stomach acids can flow all the way up to the throat, we talk about silent reflux .

      Many people with LPR dont experience heartburn at all. The typical symptoms are:

      • lump in throat
      • hoarseness

      According to Cleveland Clinic, being overstressed is one of the risk factors of silent reflux.

      This study found that depression is also common in people with silent reflux: LPR was significantly more frequent in those with depression than in those without.

      The study examined depression in people with silent reflux symptoms and not the other way around. This raises the question: can reflux cause stress?

      The Differences Between Silent Reflux Acid Reflux Gerd And Lpr

      Bloating Heartburn Nausea Constipation Wine After

      Lets start with defining reflux by itself. Reflux occurs when the contents of the stomach come back up into your esophagus, and sometimes all the way up to your throat. For many people , this causes heartburn. From there we get two different types of reflux:

      • Silent reflux: This affects the voice box/larynx and the throat/pharynx. You might feel this as a sore throat, burping, hoarse voice, etc. The reflux is silent because it doesnt cause the burning pain of heartburn and so may go unnoticed for some time.
      • Acid reflux: This affects the esophagus, which connects the throat and the stomach. The primary symptom is heartburn or burning pain.

      Then, we have LPR and GERD, two conditions involving chronic reflux:

      • LPR : You can think of LPR as the chronic presentation of silent reflux. The two terms are often used interchangeably. Laryngo means something that affects the larynx or voice box, and pharyngeal means something that affects the area at the back of the throat, called the pharynx. So together, this is reflux affecting the larynx and the pharynx.
      • GERD : GERD is a condition involving chronic acid reflux. This condition often overlaps with LPR.

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      What Are The Causes Of Obstipation

      Many underlying conditions, medications, and even structural abnormalities of the intestines can cause obstipation. Examples of conditions that can cause obstipation include:

      • abnormalities in the intestine, such as intussusception or when the intestines twist
      • severe scarring after prior surgeries
      • taking certain medications, especially opioid pain medications, such as morphine or hydrocodone other medicines that can slow intestinal movement include iron supplements, calcium channel blockers, antipsychotics, clonidine, and diuretics
      • chronic constipation related to an underlying condition, such as Hirschsprungs disease

      Obstipation is a serious condition that can potentially worsen. Regardless of the cause, its important to seek treatment if you think you have the condition.

      Treating Cervical Ligaments With Prolotherapy Published Research From Caring Medical

      Prolotherapy is an injection technique that stimulates the repair of unstable, torn or damaged ligaments. When the cervical ligaments are unstable, they allow for excessive movement of the vertebrae, which can stress tendons, atrophy muscles, pinch on nerves, such as the vagus nerve, and cause other symptoms associated with cervical instability including problems of digestion among others.

      In 2014, we published a comprehensive review of the problems related to weakened damaged cervical neck ligaments in The Open Orthopaedics Journal. We are honored that this research has been used in at least 6 other medical research papers by different authors exploring our treatments and findings and cited, according to Google Scholar, in more than 40 articles.

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      Reflux And Stress Anxiety Depression

      It seems quite likely that experiencing chest pain and other symptoms after eating can increase our stress level. According to a study from 2018:

      This cross-sectional study revealed that anxiety and depression levels were significantly higher in subjects with GERD than in controls.

      • GERD: gastroesophageal reflux disease, the chronic form of acid reflux
      • NERD: non-erosive reflux disease, same as GERD, but the esophagus is not damaged

      Looks like stress can cause reflux, which might cause more stress and so on

      What Are The Most Common Causes Of Indigestion And Constipation

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      Indigestion, the feeling of abdominal fullness or burning that sometimes follows a meal, and constipation, the ongoing difficulty passing a bowel movement, are unpleasant but usually temporary problems experienced by most people at some stage in their lives. When indigestion and constipation occur simultaneously, however, the sufferer can feel as though he is in a state of digestive misery. Understanding the common triggers of each can be key to reducing or even preventing future attacks by this unpleasant duo. Factors which may lead to both constipation and indigestion can include dairy consumption, irritable bowel syndrome, medications, and, in rare cases, serious illnesses of the digestive tract.

      One of the most common causes of simultaneous indigestion and constipation is the consumption of dairy products. In some cases, such digestive problems may result from an inability to process the sugars present in dairy products, a condition known as lactose intolerance. While dairy consumption by lactose intolerant individuals may initially cause indigestion accompanied by diarrhea, the fluids and body salts lost through these loose bowel movements can lead to constipation. Even those who normally do not have a lactose sensitivity can develop digestive issues after consuming large quantities of dairy products.

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      Your Stomach And Digestive System Issues Answered

      This month’s Ask the Doctor series features INTEGRIS gastroenterologist Dr. Abbas Raza, an expert in advanced interventional gastroenterology. Do you suffer from heartburn, gas, abdominal pain or irritable bowel syndrome? Does your esophagus burn from acid reflux? Do you have rectal bleeding or diarrhea? Do you have questions about getting a colonoscopy? Do you have other stomach and digestive system issues not listed here? Then a gastroenterologist is just the doctor for you!

      Here are the questions submitted by our readers to Dr. Raza throughout the month.


      Surprise: Antacids May Cause Constipation

      Antacids either chemically neutralize the acid in the stomach or bind to it physically to put it out of play. They usually show their effects immediately and the relief lasts for a short time. The most common types of antacids contain aluminum hydroxide. In a study done to evaluate the risk factors for chronic constipation, aluminum-based antacids featured prominently in the list. Aluminum inhibits the motor activity of the stomach and intestines, thereby causing constipation.

      Read Also: What To Eat To Ease Heartburn

      Safe Use Tips For Laxative Medicines

      Always read the Drug Facts label carefully. The label tells you everything you need to know about the medicine, including the ingredients, what you are supposed to use it for, how much you should take, and when you should not take the product.

      Ask a healthcare provider before using a laxative if you have abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, or have noticed a sudden change in bowel habits lasting for two weeks.

      Stop using a laxative and contact your healthcare provider if you have rectal bleeding or no bowel movement after use. These could be signs of a serious condition.

      When using an enema, be careful not to use force when inserting the products tip into the rectum.

      If you are pregnant or nursing, talk to a doctor before using a laxative.

      Talk to a healthcare provider before using a suppository on a child under the age of two.

      Discontinue use of a suppository on a child if you encounter resistance. Forcing product insertion may cause injury.

      OTC laxatives are available in different dosage strengths. Do not give any medicine to a child that is only intended for use in an adult.


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