How To Get Rid Of Acid Reflux In Throat Naturally
Updated on / by Addison
Most people who enjoy the occasional spicy meal will experience heartburn now and again, but if you find yourself feeling the burn even when you consume mild foods, you may be one of some 3 million adults suffering from a more chronic, aggravating condition: acid reflux. Though not a dangerous condition, acid reflux can cause significant discomfort, and it can be challenging to treat effectively.
How Can I Prevent Heartburn During Pregnancy
They say prevention is the best medicine, so knowing common heartburn triggers can help you keep the acid at bay.
Of course, pregnancy itself is a major trigger for heartburn. As your growing uterus puts pressure on your stomach, this pushes stomach acid up your throat.
Those lovely hormones are no help either. They tend to relax the valve between your stomach and esophagus, which makes it easier for acid to make its way upward.
While theres nothing you can do to stop this entirely, there are a few things that can help prevent heartburn from flaring up during pregnancy:
When To See A Doctor For Acid Reflux
If you are having frequent, recurrent acid reflux or if your acid reflux is interfering with your quality of life, you should schedule a check-up with your doctor. Your doctor can help you determine what may be behind your heartburn and work with you to manage your symptoms.
Your doctor can also assess you for a more severe form of acid reflux called GERD, which might require more treatment, like medication or even surgery. It could also be gastric ulcer disease, which can be dangerous if left untreated.
Acid reflux is usually easily treated with diet and lifestyle changes, Dykstra says. However, it is possible that other conditions are causing it, such as infection, food intolerances or other disorders. Its important to discuss symptoms with your physician to determine the cause.
She also recommends seeking help from a registered dietitian. The goal is to avoid restricting foods if possible, she says, and a dietitian can help you figure out how to do that.
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Symptoms Of Acid Reflux
If you have acid reflux, you might experience the following:
- Burning sensation or discomfort in your chest
- Burning sensation or discomfort in the back of your throat
- Unpleasant taste in the back of your throat
- Unpleasant hiccups that seem to carry acid up your throat
- Stay upright for three hours after a meal
- Over-the-counter antacids to neutralize the acid in your stomach
- Prescription antacids
- H2 blockers that reduce the amount of acid your stomach makes
- Proton-pump inhibitors that further reduce the amount of acid your stomach produces and are available both over the counter and by prescription
- Prokinetics that help clear stomach contents and strengthen the LES
- Upper endoscopy, in addition to helping diagnose GERD, can be used to tighten the LES or fix a hiatal hernia
- Fundoplication is a surgical procedure in which the upper part of the stomach is wrapped around the lower part of the esophagus to strengthen the LES
If youre suffering from acid reflux, talk to your doctor about your options or find a doctor near you.
Tip #: Stay Away From Trigger Foods
For people suffering with acid reflux and heartburn, many of them have trigger foods that will either cause symptoms to occur or make symptoms worse. Some common trigger foods include spicy foods, acidic foods, coffee, high-fat foods, and red wine. So as tempting as it may be to end the night with a bowl of ice cream or a relaxing glass of wine, take a moment to decide whether or not its worth the heartache youll experience later!
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Change Your Sleeping Position
Even if you didnt eat for a few hours before you laid down to sleep, you could start feeling heartburn once you lay down immediately.
Why does this happen if your body has already had ample time to digest?
Simply put, the position that you are in when you lay on your back puts extra pressure on the sphincter at the bottom of your esophagus.
This sphincter is the LES, the muscle separating your stomach from your esophagus and is the root of acid reflux disorders.
When the LES is pressed on when you lie down flat, it can cause reflux to occur.
To avoid this, make sure you are elevating your head and shoulders when you sleep and not simply laying flat.
This can easily be done by putting a few pillows behind you.
What Causes Acid Reflux
Acid reflux is the name for what happens when stomach acid makes its way up into the esophagus. Most often it’s because the lower esophageal sphincter, a muscle valve that is supposed to keep stomach acid where it belongsin your stomach isn’t working properly.
There are a few things that can loosen the muscle, making it easier for acid to shoot back up. Eating certain foods, like citrus fruits, tomatoes, chocolate, peppermint, garlic, onions, and anything spicy, fatty, or fried, is one of the biggest causes. So is drinking coffee, soda, or alcohol. Obesity and pregnancy can also lead to acid reflux because they put pressure on your abdomen, which can weaken your lower esophageal sphincter.
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A Pharmacist Can Help With Heartburn And Acid Reflux
Speak to a pharmacist for advice if you keep getting heartburn.
They can recommend medicines called antacids that can help ease your symptoms.
It’s best to take these with food or soon after eating, as this is when you’re most likely to get heartburn. They may also work for longer if taken with food.
Why Does The Sphincter Weaken
Various factors may make the lower esophageal sphincter weaker or cause it to relax at times when it should stay closed.
According to the
According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology , a person can ease acid reflux they experience when trying to sleep by:
- elevating the head of the bed 6â8 inches
- avoiding lying down 2â3 hours after a meal
- eating smaller meals more frequently and not eating heavy meals before bedtime
The side of the body on which a person sleeps may also make a difference. A found sleeping on the left side alleviates acid reflux.
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How To Relieve Heartburn During Pregnancy
Heartburn often appears during the second trimester, and it can get worse as your belly grows. Learn more about what causes heartburn during pregnancy, with five expert tips for relieving the pain.
Like the name implies, heartburn is a burning sensation in your chest but it has nothing to do with your heart. It happens when the lower esophageal sphincter , a muscle responsible for keeping stomach contents in their place, begins to relax or leak. This allows stomach acids to flow upward into the esophagus, explains Suzanne Trupin, M.D., CEO of Women’s Health Practice of Champaign, Ill.
Unfortunately, “most women will experience some acid reflux , especially in the second half of their pregnancy,” says Shari Brasner, M.D., assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, in New York City. The uncomfortable sensation tends to get worse as your baby grows.
Heartburn usually appears after meals or at bedtime, and it can range from uncomfortable to agonizing. Understanding the causes and prevention strategies can provide relief to expectant moms. Heres what you need to know about heartburn in pregnancy.
What Are The Worst Foods For Heartburn
One of the first nighttime heartburn tips is to avoid foods that can make heartburn worse.
1. Limit coffee
Coffee and caffeine can lower sphincter pressure, causing it to relax and acid to backflow. Try drinking less coffee, especially in the evening or towards the end of the day.
2. Eat less acidic food
Avoid acidic foods like tomatoes, citrus fruits, and chocolate. If you enjoy these foods, the key is moderation. Try eating less of these foods at night.
3. Avoid fried, fatty foods
Fried foods can be triggers for some people. Avoid fried fast food and cook grilled or roasted meals at home.
4. Limit alcohol
Alcohol can stimulate extra stomach acid and relax the esophageal sphincter, contributing to acid backflow. If you find you get heartburn after drinking alcohol, try drinking less.
5. Avoid spicy foods
Spicy foods are common heartburn triggers as they can irritate your esophagus and sphincter. Swap your spices for fresh herbs or eat a bland diet.
6. Avoid carbonated drinks
Sodas and sparkling drinks make you belch, which can lead to acid reflux and heartburn symptoms.
7. Avoid peppermint tea
Both peppermint and spearmint can relax your esophagus valve and worsen heartburn.
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Why Is Gerd Worse After Going To Bed
There are several explanations for why GERD is commonly worse at night after going to bed:
- When lying down, gravity no longer helps keep stomach acid down, making it easier for reflux to occur.
- Saliva can help neutralize stomach acid, but production of saliva is reduced during deeper stages of sleep.
A combination of these effects can facilitate the leakage of stomach acid into the esophagus and allow the acid to remain in place for longer, potentially causing more severe GERD symptoms, including those that can disturb sleep. The problem may be even greater if a person goes to bed soon after eating and/or eats foods that trigger GERD.
The Differences Between Daytime And Nighttime Acid Reflux
While the symptoms of acid reflux are often the same no matter the time of the day, the resulting pain can be less intense during the night.
If you find youre waking up with heartburn in the morning or middle of the night, the burning may be so subdued that you fall back to sleep without addressing the discomfort. However, lessened pain can be a misleading indicator as, contrary to what you may feel, acid reflux at night is more severe and should be addressed as aggressively if not more so than episodes that occur during the day.
There are enough differences between acid reflux when youre awake versus asleep to be classified into daytime and nighttime GERD. Compared with daytime GERD, nighttime reflux occurs less frequently but the episodes last longer. The longer the stomach acid lingers in the esophagus, the greater the risk of inflammation and erosive damage. Not too surprisingly then, long-term health complications are more likely with reflux that occurs while you sleep.
Why the difference? The reasons have to do with physiological changes from day to night. During the day, an upright posture contributes to better digestive efficiency with your stomach emptying more quickly. When theres nothing in your stomach, then theres nothing to reflux. Also the normal process of swallowing makes use of saliva thats formulated to neutralize acid, while also helping to clear refluxed acid from the esophagus.
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Sleep With Your Head And Shoulder On An Incline
Lying down flat presses the stomach’s contents against the LES. With the head higher than the stomach, gravity helps reduce this pressure and keeps stomach contents where they belongin the stomach. You can elevate your head in a couple of ways. You can place bricks, blocks or anything that’s sturdy securely under the legs at the head of your bed. You can also use a wedge-shaped pillow to elevate your head.
Tips For Nighttime Heartburn Relief
1. Sleep on your left side.This position seems to help reduce nighttime heartburn symptoms, says David A. Johnson, MD, internal medicine division chief at Eastern Virginia School of Medicine, Norfolk, Va. To remember which side to sleep on, Johnson offers this memory trick: Right is wrong.
2. Lose weight, even a little. Heartburn often just gets worse as you gain weight, but losing as little as two and a half pounds can help reduce heartburn symptoms, Johnson says.
3. Sleep with your upper body elevated. When you lay flat in bed, your throat and stomach are basically at the same level, making it easy for stomach acids to flow up your esophagus, causing heartburn. You can elevate your body in two ways:
- Put the head of your bed on 4- to 6-inch blocks.
- Sleep on a wedge-shaped pillow that’s at least 6 to 10 inches thick on one end. Don’t substitute regular pillows they just raise your head, and not your entire upper body.
4. Wear loose-fitting clothes. Tight clothes, especially near your waist, can put pressure on your stomach, leading to heartburn symptoms.
6. Steer clear of late-night meals or big meals. Avoid eating meals two to three hours before bedtime to reduce stomach acid and allow the stomach to partially empty its contents before you sleep, suggests the American Gastroenterological Association. Because large meals put pressure on your stomach, try eating a smaller meal in the evening to help prevent nighttime heartburn symptoms.
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What Causes Heartburn At Night
There are several triggers that may cause heartburn during the day. Nighttime heartburn often occurs while lying down too soon after eating. Lying flat can push acid from the stomach up into the lower esophagus, making it harder for food to properly digest. This can cause a burning sensation in your chest, known as heartburn.
What Lifestyle Changes Can Help Treat My Child’s Reflux Or Gerd
Sometimes reflux and GERD in children can be treated with lifestyle changes:
- Losing weight, if needed
- Wearing loose-fitting clothing around the abdomen
- Staying upright for 3 hours after meals and not reclining and slouching when sitting
- Sleeping at a slight angle. Raise the head of your child’s bed 6 to 8 inches by safely putting blocks under the bedposts.
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Acid Reflux Which Foods To Avoid
The only way to solve the problem is to increase the gastric acidity of the stomach so that you can digest what you eat normally.
Many foods can help you, others not really.
We often stress the beneficial role of oranges and lemons in rebalancing the stomach but in fact, these fruits tend to trigger reflux.
In fact, a simple orange juice can cause acid reflux.
You should therefore avoid excessive consumption of these fruits, especially on an empty stomach.
It is also said that the acidity of cows milk can solve this type of problem.
But its high-fat content can make matters even worse due to its difficult digestion.
Regular excessive consumption of dairy products and citrus fruits can also damage the esophagus.
Tomatoes tend to trigger acid reflux. Remember to avoid tomato sauce, ketchup, tomato soup.
Onions and peppers should also be avoided to protect you from reflux.
It is also important to avoid anything that triggers gastric reflux like coffee, tea, and anything that has too much caffeine like energy drinks.
Choose decaffeinated until you have resolved your digestive problem.
Unfortunately, chocolate and pastries should also be banned because they cause bloating and fat, the sugars they contain unbalance the gut flora.
Alcohol is very bad for the stomach and directly attacks the esophagus.
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Consider These Supplements For Night Time Reflux Causing Insomnia
Since sleeping pills will only worsen your GERD symptoms in the long run, what can you take to help sleep peacefully? Some dietary supplements can provide relief from acid reflux and improve sleep quality at the same time. These dont come with undesirable side-effects and help symptoms of heartburn naturally.
Magnesium deficiency has been associated with acid reflux. Magnesium aids in the functioning of LES that works as a lid between the esophagus and the stomach to keep stomach contents from coming back up the esophagus. Magnesium is also vital for the function of GABA receptors, which are calming neurotransmitters that the brain requires to switch off and go to sleep. In simpler words magnesium supplements improve sleep quality and can also help with acid reflux. Try 200 to 400 mg of magnesium citrate or glycinate twice a day, but be aware that excessive magnesium supplementation may result in diarrhea, nausea, and stomach cramping for some people.
Melatonin has long been used as a sleep aid, but is also effective in inhibiting gastric acid secretion and seems to control the lower esophageal sphincter. Melatonin is naturally produced by pineal gland to regulate the wake/sleep cycle and other daily biorhythms. Low levels of melatonin can lead to insomnia as well as worsen GERD. Start with 500 mcg to 5 mg at night.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Heartburn
Heartburn is caused by the contents of your stomach moving back up your esophagus , usually due to a weakening of the lower esophageal sphincter . The LES is a muscle at the end of your esophagus that usually tightens to keep your stomach’s contents in your stomach. However, this muscle can become weak or relaxed at the wrong times .
Heartburn symptoms include :
- a mild to moderate painful sensation right under your breastbone, sometimes radiating into your back or up your neck
- The taste of acid in your mouth, commonly caused by regurgitation
While anyone can experience heartburn after a heavy meal, experiencing heartburn frequently may mean that it is a symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease . Often, people use the term heartburn interchangeably with GERD. However, heartburn is a symptom of GERD, not the disorder itself.
GERD symptoms are a bit more severe. GERD is marked by any of these symptoms :
- Sensation of a lump in the throat