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How To Get Heartburn Under Control

What Consequences Can Persistent Heartburn Have

How to get rid of heartburn naturally

If heartburn only occurs from time to time, you dont have to worry about it. However, if the symptoms occur more frequently, these secondary diseases can occur:

  • Inflammation of the mucous membrane of the oesophagus, which promotes the development of ulcers and can lead to narrowing of the oesophagus
  • Pathological cell changes in the lower part of the oesophagus, which can lead to a malignant tumour in the oesophagus

How Can I Deal With Heartburn During Pregnancy

I’m in my second trimester. No matter what I eat, I get heartburn. Is this normal? If so, what can I do to feel better? Cari

Heartburn, despite its name, has nothing to do with the heart. It’s a burning feeling in the throat and chest when the stomach’s contents move back up into the esophagus .

Heartburn is common during pregnancy. Pregnancy hormones can make the valve at the entrance to the stomach relax so that it doesn’t close as it should. This lets acidic stomach contents move up into the esophagus, a condition known as gastroesophageal reflux , or acid reflux. It can get worse later in pregnancy when the growing uterus presses up on the stomach.

To help ease heartburn pain:

  • Skip foods and drinks that can make it worse, such as citrus spicy, fatty foods caffeine and carbonated drinks.
  • Eat several small meals throughout the day.
  • Take your time when eating.
  • Drink liquids between not during meals.
  • Avoid eating or drinking for 3 hours before bedtime.
  • Resist the urge to lie down after meals.
  • Raise your head when you sleep.
  • Talk to your doctor about medicines that are safe to take for heartburn during pregnancy.

Specific Foods To Avoid With Gerd

Relieving GERD symptoms can be as simple as making some smart meal choices. Spicy foods, including curry, salsa, chili, and hot sauce aggravate GERD symptoms. The spices make stomach acid stir up and become more likely to kick back up into your throat.

Garlic and onions are also aggravating foods. Beware as these are ingredients in many recipes, including holiday stuffing, stews, and some salads.

Fatty meals from fast-food restaurants or barbecue joints can slow digestion, so food sits and stomach acid releases over a longer period of time. Greasy cuts of meat, French fries, and burgers are best kept off your plate. Opt for grilled chicken, baked potatoes, and flatbread instead.

Pizza is a double whammy as its often fatty and covered in acidic tomato sauce, which exacerbates GERD. Classic or spicy marinara sauces over pasta can be triggers for GERD symptoms, too.

Citrus fruits and chocolate are highly acidic, meaning you should also avoid these if youve been diagnosed with GERD. Coffee, alcohol, carbonated drinks, and alcohol also irritate your digestive tract.

Sometimes, the simple after-dinner mint which seems entirely harmless can also set off a surge of GERD symptoms.

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Don’t Lay Flat When You Sleep

Lying down flat presses the stomach’s contents against the LES. With the head higher than the stomach, gravity helps reduce this pressure.

You can elevate your head in a couple of ways:

  • Place bricks, blocks, or anything that’s sturdy and securely under the legs at the head of your bed,
  • Use a wedge-shaped pillow under your head and shoulders.

Calcium May Offer Some Benefits

Get Your Treatment for Acid Reflux Under Control Now

Calcium carbonate is frequently used as a calcium supplement, but also as an antacid due to its acid-neutralizing effect.

One cup of cows milk provides 2123% of the Daily Value for calcium depending on whether its whole or low-fat .

Because of its high calcium content, some claim that its a natural heartburn remedy.

In fact, a study in 11,690 people determined that high intake of dietary calcium was associated with a reduced risk of reflux in men .

Calcium is also an essential mineral for muscle tone.

People with GERD tend to have a weakened lower esophageal sphincter , the muscle that would usually prevent your stomachs contents from coming back up.

A study in 18 people with heartburn found that taking calcium carbonate caused an increase in LES muscle tone in 50% of cases. These results suggest that taking this supplement to improve muscle function may be another way to prevent heartburn .

Recommended Reading: Foods To Help With Heartburn And Acid Reflux

How To Avoid Gerd Symptoms

You can reduce or eliminate the discomfort of GERD symptoms by taking a few simple steps. These include:

  • Avoiding fast food
  • Not eating 3 to 4 hours before bed
  • Staying at a healthy weight
  • Eating smaller meals
  • Staying away from spicy foods
  • Wearing loose-fitting clothing
  • Exercising regularly with an empty stomach
  • Avoiding stress

If you notice that your GERD symptoms are interfering with your daily life or drastically restricting what you can eat, consider talking with your doctor about treatment options, says Dr. Purcell.

If you need further treatment, your doctor can help you find a treatment that works best for you and will help you find relief from GERD.

What The Research Says

No diet has been proven to prevent GERD. However, certain foods may ease symptoms in some people.

Research shows that increased fiber intake, specifically in the form of fruits and vegetables, may protect against GERD. But scientists arent yet certain how fiber prevents GERD symptoms.

Increasing your dietary fiber is generally a good idea. In addition to helping with GERD symptoms, fiber also reduces the risk of:

Talk to your doctor if you have questions about whether certain foods should be a part of your diet. Foods that help improve acid reflux for one person may be problematic for someone else.

Working with your doctor can help you develop a diet to control or lessen your symptoms.

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Problems With Conventional Treatments For Acid Reflux

Acid reflux, heartburn and GERD are usually treated with perscriptions or over-the-counter drugs to lower pain. Sometimes these are used when symptoms are already beginning to flare up, while in other cases they are taken daily to prevent symptoms.

The three main types of medicines to treat acid reflux symptoms or those caused by GERD are: antacids, H2RAs , and PPIs . In the past, you may have taken some of these products and pills to resolve your symptoms.

In fact, acid reflux/GERD drugs have been found to contribute to symptoms like: poor digestion, irritable bowel syndrome , depression, anemia and fatigue. Long-term use of gastric acid suppression, like proton pump inhibitors or antacid medications, are even associated with an increased risk of C. difficile infections. As a result, serious problems that can develop include diarrhea, inflamed intestines and bleeding ulcers. Patients who are at the greatest risk for side effects from PPIs include the elderly, those with certain chronic medical conditions, and those taking broad spectrum antibiotics. In fact, the FDA has warned patients taking these drugs that they should immediately contact their healthcare professional and seek care if they develop diarrhea that does not improve.

A Maintain A Healthy Body Weight

Mom Talks – How to control gas trouble, constipation and heartburn during pregnancy. Malayalam

Do you know your body mass index ? If not, start now by entering your weight and height into a BMI calculator to use the NIH calculator and find your current BMI.

A healthy BMI is between 19 and 25, but anyone with a compromised LES should not be at the high end of normal. We recommend a BMI of 24 or less. Why is this important? We wrote a cornerstone article titled How is your excess weight destroying your LES , which we highly recommend you read if you have a BMI greater than 24.

This excess weight does two things that will increase your GERD symptoms. First, it distends the stomach, pulling down on the LES and stretching it out. Over a long-term, this will reduce the effectiveness of the LES to act as an effective barrier between the stomach and the oesophagus.

Second, it puts added pressure on the diaphragm, potentially pushing stomach content into the esophagus. Many research studies have proven that a reduction in BMI will reduce GERD symptoms. In an NIH published paper researchers concluded the following:

In summary, our findings suggest that, beyond being overweight or obese, the risk of GERD symptoms rises progressively with increasing BMI, even among normal weight individuals. This appears true for all degrees of symptom severity and duration, as well as for nocturnal symptoms. Notably, weight loss was associated with a decreased risk of symptoms.

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Distress Call Of The Esophagus

Patients often first notice the reflux by acidic burping. If the heartburn only occurs from time to time, often home remedies against heartburn already help to get it under control. If the reflux disease is behind it, drugs and an adjustment of the own lifestyle can help. You should not ignore the symptoms: if left untreated, frequent heartburn can lead to inflammation of the mucous membrane of the esophagus, among other things.

Tips For Controlling Your Acid Reflux Symptoms

    After binging on spicy pizza or greasy onion rings, anyone can suffer from occasional indigestion resulting in acid reflux. Thats the uncomfortable sometimes painful condition when your stomach acid, and even food, creep back up into your esophagus. But if you get hit with heartburn a couple times a week or more, you may be experiencing a chronic form of acid reflux called gastroesophageal reflux disease .

    If you live in or near the Fairfax or South Riding, Virginia, communities, youre in luck. Dr. Chethana Rao at Prima Medicine is an expert on acid reflux. She can help you solve your acid reflux issues with fast-acting medications, long-term treatments, or both.

    Meanwhile, there are some simple ways you may be able to ease your own symptoms. Here are 7 lifestyle changes that may reduce or eliminate your acid reflux symptoms.

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    Take An Acid Neutralizer

    When heartburn hits and you need relief, try an antacid like Tums, Rolaids, or Maalox. These medications act quickly to neutralize the acid in the stomach, which can reduce your symptoms. Dont have any on hand? Dissolve a teaspoon of baking soda in eight ounces of water and drink to neutralize the acid in your stomach. Just use caution with this home remedy since its high in sodium and shouldnt be used by people on a sodium-restricted diet.

    Learn more: Treating GERD with medications: What you need to know

    We also like H-2 blockers, also known as Histamine H2-receptor antagonists. These include such brand names a Pepcid, Pepcid AC, Tagamet, and Zantac. These medications dont work as quickly as acid neutralizers, but they are still very fast. H2 blockers should be taken about 30 minutes before you eat or when you typically experience symptoms.

    The benefit of H2 blockers is that they work longer than antacids, but they dont have the same medical risks associated with proton pump inhibitors. As is true with all medications we highly recommend that you discuss use with your doctor before you begin any drug treatment, prescription or over-the-counter.

    And remember that while these quick fixes may help relieve your GERD symptoms, they dont address the underlying cause of those symptoms. Your goal should be to stop reflux from happening in the first place, which is why we recommend several long-term solutions to cure heartburn.

    Maintain A Healthy Body Weight

    8 Secrets for Controlling Heartburn  Plus Signs That It

    An analysis of the medical literature led by Dr. Jesper Lagergren of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm found that GERD affected about 22 percent of people who were classified as obese, compared with about 14 percent of those who were not obese. After you eat, a muscular sphincter at the bottom of the esophagus opens to let food enter the stomach, and then closes to keep it from reversing direction. An oversized abdomen can put excess pressure on this sphincter and may prevent it from closing when it should, allowing contents from the acidic stomach to leach into the esophagus.

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    Causes Of Antibiotic Pill

    Numerous issues can lead to esophagitis through extended contact with antibiotic pills.2

    Antibiotic Causticity

    The causticity of antibiotic pills can cause injury if pills remain in contact with the lining of the esophagus.

    Posture

    Poor posture can cause pills to get stuck in the esophagus.

    Dry Mouth

    Conditions or medication that lead to decreased amounts of saliva causing dry mouth can cause pills to get stuck in the esophagus when swallowed.

    Number of Pills Swallowed

    Taking a number of pills at the same time can cause them to get stuck in the esophagus.

    Antibiotic Pill Size

    Larger antibiotic pills can potentially get stuck when swallowing.

    Lack of Water

    Not drinking enough water when swallowing pills can cause them to get stuck in the esophagus.

    Esophageal Motility Disorder

    Esophageal motility disorders make swallowing both solids and liquids difficult.

    Esophageal Strictures

    Repeated exposure to refluxed acid in patients with GERD can form a ring of scar tissue called an esophageal stricture. Esophageal strictures make swallowing difficult allowing the prolonged contact of antibiotic pills with the lining of the esophagus.

    Cardiomegaly

    Cardiomegaly is the enlargement of the heart. When the left atrium is enlarged, it can compress the esophagus causing swallowing issues.

    Age

    The muscles weaken with age. This includes the muscle in the esophagus and LES. The weakening of these muscles can make swallowing pills more difficult and lend to the reflux of medication.

    How Common Is Acid Reflux

    Acid reflux is among the most frequent health complaints of American adults, and may have become even more common in the wake of pandemic-related stress and weight gain. Late last year, pharmacies reported an unprecedented run on antacids by people described as having a pandemic stomach, leaving those with serious ailments that required such products often out of luck.

    Even before the pandemic, an online survey from 2019 of more than 71,000 adults found that nearly a third reported that they were affected at least weekly by the discomforting symptoms of acid reflux, in which a small amount of stomach contents reverses course and backs up into the esophagus.

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    How Can I Prevent My Symptoms Of Gerd

    As you can see, there are many types of foods to avoid if you have GERD or acid reflux disease. However, you may or may not experience symptoms after eating one of these foods as each case is different. This list of foods is meant to give you general guidelines of foods to avoid.

    With that being said, the most reliable way to know which foods you should avoid is to keep a food journal. Pay attention to what you eat, then record whether or not you experience symptoms after.

    You should also pay attention to which situations lead to your symptoms. For instance, do you experience symptoms in the morning before youve eaten, or after a large lunch? Or, perhaps you notice symptoms at night after eating a late dinner or dessert.

    If you have more questions about preventing GERD or acid reflux symptoms, talk with your doctor. Depending on the severity of your symptoms, your doctor may give you a prescription to help soothe your heartburn.

    Prescriptions usually include histamine-2 blockers , proton pump inhibitors , and promotility agents. These are usually short-term prescriptions for acid reflux treatment while you make dietary adjustments.

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    How To Cure Heartburn Four Quick Fixes And Long

    How to Cure Acid Reflux Disease Naturally

    How to cure heartburn you ask? Well, theres no easy answer to that question.

    If youve been struggling with acid reflux for any length of time, then you know there isnt a quick fix to this disease as a whole. GERD has many symptoms, one of which is heartburn. At the crux of this disease is the lower oesophageal sphincter . Located at the junction of the oesophagus and the stomach, the LES can weaken and no longer function as an effective barrier, allowing the acidic contents of the stomach to back-flow up into the oesophagus. When this happens, heartburn often follows. This weakening of the LES is progressive, so the more often you reflux, the more frequent the episodes become.

    Learn more: GERD explained: The role of the LES

    Medications can help relieve acid reflux symptoms by making the contents of the stomach less acidic however, they dont stop reflux from happening. Thats why managing GERD requires commitment and diligence: Watching what and how you eat and making lifestyle choices aimed at minimizing reflux can reduce your symptoms AND help stop the progression of the condition.

    But sometimes, despite your best efforts to manage your GERD, heartburn strikes and you need relief . So though we cant provide a definite answer to how to cure heartburn? We can offer four quick fixes to help you cool the burn.

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    What Are The Symptoms Of Acid Reflux

    Common symptoms include a burning feeling in the chest, a sensation of a lump in the throat, belching and bloating, and regurgitation into the mouth of highly acidic, partially digested food from the stomach. Reflux can also affect the respiratory tract, resulting in hoarseness, wheezing, postnasal drip, cough or asthma.

    But persistent acid reflux is more than just annoying. If it occurs too often and persists for too long, it can erode the lining of the esophagus and increase the risk of developing a deadly cancer called esophageal adenocarcinoma.

    What Is The Best Diet For Heartburn

    That does not have to be true, however. Breakfast, lunch and dinner can be both enjoyable and heartburn-friendly if you know which foods to incorporate into your diet.

    Heartburn can flare when your stomach produces too much gastric acid, and your food choices can directly affect this. Here are three meals that incorporate heartburn-reducing foods that your stomach will appreciate.

    Oatmeal and Wheat: Try Whole Grains for Breakfast

    Oatmeal has been a whole-grain breakfast favorite for generations. It is a good source of fiber, so it keeps you feeling full and promotes regularity. Oats also absorb stomach acid and reduce symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease . For something sweet, top your oatmeal with bananas, apples or pears. The fructose in these fruits is less likely to trigger acid reflux than other sugars. Of course, eating oatmeal every day could get boring, so switch things up with a warm bowl of Cream of Wheat, or some whole grain toast with peanut butter.

    Avoid coffee and most teas that contain caffeine, which can cause heartburn. Instead, brew a soothing cup of ginger tea. Ginger has natural anti-inflammatory properties that will help regulate acid production.

    Vegetables: Add Some Color and Nutrients to Your Lunch

    Try these options for a light and tasty lunch:

    • Baked potato with steamed broccoli
    • Mixed green salad with fresh-cut vegetables and a light oil and vinegar dressing
    • Veggie wrap or veggie quesadilla

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