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What To Do To Ease Heartburn

Smoking + Alcohol = Heart On Fire

Reduce your Acid Reflux / Heartburn in just 3 Minutes!

Smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol can set you up for terrible reflux. The nicotine and alcohol both work to weaken your LES, making it that much easier for stomach contents and acid to splash up into your esophagus. Alcohol is also going to irritate your stomach in general. The solution? Quit smoking, and drink less Doing both will improve your health overall, in addition to relieving acid reflux.

How To Cure Heartburn Four Quick Fixes And Long

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.

Antacids H2 Blockers Ppis Our Pharmacists Explain The Options

Fortunately, pharmacies stock plenty of safe, effective remedies so many, in fact, that it can be confusing trying to figure out which one is right for you. So, we asked some pharmacists for help. Heres a rundown on the three classes of heartburn remedies, courtesy of The Portland Clinic pharmacy team.

Antacids

Antacids such as Tums, Rolaids, Maalox and Mylanta are the fastest-acting heartburn relievers. They take effect in less than five minutes by quickly neutralizing acid in the stomach. For mild heartburn after a meal, antacids offer quick relief that lasts about 20-30 minutes. They come in a variety of strengths, so check labels for dosing information. In general, you shouldnt use antacids more than four times a day. If you find yourself reaching for them frequently, it might be time to try a different one or to switch to one of the stronger remedies.

H2 blockers

Pepcid, Tagamet and Zantac are some of the more well-known H2 blockers, so called because they block a chemical called histamine that prompts the stomach to make acid. They take longer than antacids to bring relief about 30-45 minutes but the relief lasts 4-10 hours. H2 blockers can be used to relieve mild or moderate heartburn, or to prevent it when you anticipate heartburn . You also can combine H2 blockers with antacids for quicker relief. Just dont take H2 blockers more than twice a day, or for more than two weeks if you use them regularly.

Proton pump inhibitors

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What Is The Treatment For Heartburn

The health care professional will recommend treating heartburn in a stepwise fashion. For mild or occasional symptoms, simple lifestyle modifications may be enough. The next step is nonprescription antacids such as Maalox, Mylanta, Tums, or Rolaids. Other treatments include acid blockers and even surgery. In most cases, one or more of these treatments provide relief from heartburn and prevent it from turning into a more serious disease.

I take nonprescription antacids for heartburn, but they dont seem to help.

Nonprescription antacids are only part of the treatment for heartburn. They can work very well, but these antacids alone usually cant stop heartburn. A health care professional will probably recommend that the patient make lifestyle changes in addition to other treatments.

What kind of lifestyle changes and remedies can I make to reduce heartburn?

Try any or all of the following:

Will these changes stop the heartburn?

They may. If they dont, adding a nonprescription antacid can be helpful.

How do antacids work?

What if lifestyle changes and antacids dont work?

If a person still has symptoms after lifestyle modifications and antacids, a health care professional probably will prescribe a stronger drug. The usual choice is one of the histamine-2 blockers, or acid blockers. These drugs block the biochemical process that creates acid in the stomach.

What are acid blockers?

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When Can I Expect The Heartburn To End During Pregnancy

Does Mustard Help With Heartburn

Unfortunately, heartburn is a symptom you’re likely to experience throughout your entire pregnancy if you have it at all.

In fact, even if you escaped indigestion early on in your pregnancy, there’s a good chance you’ll have a surge starting around the second or third trimesters, when your uterus takes over your abdominal cavity and forces your stomach upwards.

Fortunately, the burn should clear up as soon as you give birth.

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Take A Proactive Approach

Thats why, if you have had heartburn or acid reflux consistently for longer than three years, you should have an endoscopy, says Brown. An endoscopy is a simple procedure where a specially designed scope is used to examine the esophagus and take tissue samples, when necessary.

The tissue samples or biopsies are examined to look for any abnormal cell growth, Brown explains. The hope is that well be able to catch any abnormal cells before they become cancerous.

Patients who are diagnosed with Barretts typically undergo repeat endoscopies one year and three years later. If precancerous cells are seen at that point, treatment may involve surgical removal of the esophagus to prevent eventual progression to cancer.

But a technique available at Rush, the HALO Ablation System, enables doctors to use radiofrequency ablation to remove Barretts tissue completely, without invasive surgery and with relatively few complications.

HALO ablation has shown to be an effective alternative to surgery in select patients, says Brown. However, the good news is that most patients with Barretts will never progress to the point that they require this level of intervention.

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Sit Or Stand Up Straight

Your posture could also be making heartburn symptoms worse. If you are lying down, sit straight or stand up. The inclined position makes it easier for stomach acids to flow into your esophagus. Standing upright will reduce pressure on the stomach valves which prevent the backflow of acids into the food pipe.

Also Check: What To Take For Heartburn Medicine

Heartburn Relief Home Remedies For Heartburn

Heartburn is a common condition and can strike at any time. Thankfully, there are many ways to relieve heartburn symptoms when they flare up. Chewing an antacid such as TUMS is a first line option, particularly when you need fast relief however, home remedies and changing lifestyle habits can help, too dampening down the painful sensation you feel in your chest and throat.

Don’t Lie Flat When You Sleep

Tips to Relieve Heartburn Naturally

When you lie flat your stomach contents press against the LES. Keeping your head higher than your stomach helps reduce this pressure.

You can elevate your head in a couple of ways:

  • Place bricks, blocks, or something sturdy and secure under the legs at the head of your bed.
  • Use a wedge-shaped GERD pillow under your head and shoulders.

Also Check: What Do You Do If You Have Heartburn

Avoid Certain Activities After Eating

A person should not engage in any physical activity after a meal. This could cause the abdominal muscles to contract, which can force food back up into the esophagus and cause heartburn.

In particular, a person should avoid tasks that involve bending over, such as cleaning the floor and lifting objects.

2014 review indicates that GERD is becoming more and more prevalent in the United States. The major factor underlying the trend is the rise in obesity.

While studies have not established that weight loss through dietary changes can help GERD, data show weight loss through gastric bypass surgery consistently decreases symptoms.

Scientific research has suggested supplements may help a person ease the symptoms of GERD.

How What And When

Watch how you eat: Dont inhale giant mouthfuls of food. Take smaller bites and eat slowly, allowing your stomach time to digest and without giving it an excuse to pump out excess acid.

Watch what you eat: Youre probably aware that specific foods trigger heartburn, usually foods high in acid or spicy foods. Avoid these as best you can to ward off

Watch when you eat: Dont eat within 3-4 hours before bed. Lying down puts more pressure on your LES and increases the likelihood of acid sneaking through.

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Elevate Your Upper Body

Lying down can make heartburn worse. When it comes time for bed, adjust your sleeping surface to raise your upper body.

According to the Mayo Clinic, lifting your head with extra pillows isnt usually enough. Instead, the goal is to elevate your body from the waist up.

If you have an adjustable bed, set it at a suitable angle to provide relief. If your bed isnt adjustable, you can change the angle of your sleeping surface by using a wedge pillow.

Try Baking Soda Or Apple Cider Vinegar

home remedy for heartburn

Some items in your kitchen can help to get rid of heartburn. Baking soda, for example, helps neutralize the acidity in your stomach and can temporarily alleviate acid reflux .2 Dissolve a teaspoon of baking soda in eight fluid ounces of water and sip slowly for temporary relief .2 Another remedy that some people swear by for reducing acid reflux is a teaspoon to a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar mixed into a glass of water. However, there is no clinical evidence that this works.3

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Limit Your Intake Of Carbonated Beverages

Healthcare professionals sometimes advise people with GERD to limit their intake of carbonated beverages.

This is because studies have observed that regular consumption of carbonated or fizzy beverages, including soft drinks, club soda, and seltzer, could be linked to a higher risk of reflux .

One study found that carbonated soft drinks, in particular, worsened certain acid reflux symptoms, including heartburn, fullness, and burping .

The main reason is that the carbon dioxide gas in carbonated beverages causes people to burp more often an effect that can increase the amount of acid escaping into the esophagus .

Summary

Drinking carbonated beverages temporarily increases the frequency of burping, which may promote acid reflux. If they worsen your symptoms, try drinking less or avoiding them altogether.

Natural Remedy: Use Baking Soda

You may find relief from infrequent heartburn with sodium bicarbonate, otherwise known as baking soda. Simply mix ½ teaspoon with four ounces of water to help neutralize the acid. Note this contains sodium and should not be used if you are on a sodium-restricted diet. Check with your doctor if you are taking any prescriptions drugs, are pregnant or have a chronic health condition before using baking soda to relieve heartburn.

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When Should I Call My Healthcare Provider About Heartburn During Pregnancy

If heartburn isnt going away, talk to your provider. They can prescribe medications that are safe to take while pregnant.

You should also call your provider if you:

  • Have heartburn that wakes you up at night.
  • Have trouble swallowing.
  • Have black poop.
  • Are losing weight.

Heartburn can have similar symptoms to a heart attack. If youve never had heartburn before and youre having chest pains, call your provider or head to the nearest ER.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Heartburn during pregnancy is a common pregnancy symptom, especially in the third trimester. You can prevent or get relief from heartburn during pregnancy by making a few changes to your diet, like eating more frequent but smaller meals and avoiding spicy or fried foods. Some yogurt or milk may also help relieve symptoms. Before you take antacids, be sure to check with your provider for the safest option to take during pregnancy.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 01/29/2021.

References

Eat Smaller More Frequent Meals

Living with Acid Reflux : How to Eat to Ease Acid Reflux

Theres a ring-like muscle known as the lower esophageal sphincter where the esophagus opens into the stomach.

It acts as a valve and normally prevents the acidic contents of the stomach from going up into the esophagus. It typically stays closed but may open when you swallow, belch, or vomit.

In people with acid reflux, this muscle is weakened or dysfunctional. Acid reflux can also occur when theres too much pressure on the muscle, causing acid to squeeze through the opening .

Unsurprisingly, most reflux symptoms take place after a meal. It also seems that eating just one to two large meals per day may worsen reflux symptoms (

24 ).

For this reason, some studies suggest that losing at least 10% of your body weight could significantly decrease symptoms of GERD in people with the condition .

Achieving and maintaining a moderate body weight can help reduce acid reflux in the long term.

However, if youre interested in this approach, make sure to speak with a healthcare professional to assess whether its right for you, and if so, how you can lose weight safely and sustainably.

Summary

Losing belly fat and maintaining a moderate weight might relieve some of your symptoms of GERD. However, make sure to speak with a healthcare professional before attempting to lose weight to treat this condition.

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C Make All The Necessary Lifestyle Changes

There are many things you can do besides maintaining a healthy BMI and following a GERD friendly diet. Here is a short list of recommendations you should consider:

  • Avoid alcohol
  • If you smoke, stop immediately
  • Leave at least 3 hours between your final meal and bedtime
  • Wear loose-fitting clothes
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Walk for 20 minutes after a major meal to aid digestion
  • Try eating 5 or 6 small meals daily

For a more thorough list of recommendations, we recommend you read Acid Reflux Remedies Questions, Answers, Stages & Treatments.

Foods That Help To Kill Heartburn

Eating a banana can help to form a lining that prevents heartburn from getting worse.

Most of us have suffered from heartburn at some point or another, and it sometimes seems so common that there isnt really any cure for it.

Heartburn is unlikely to last more than a few hours, but if you experience recurring heartburn, you can start to feel like you are constantly suffering.

If you want to try some natural ways of relieving heartburn, you can start by eating the right foods.

Here are 10 of the best foods that you can try if youre experiencing heartburn and want to get rid of it quickly.

Recommended Reading: Ways To Ease Heartburn During Pregnancy

Home Remedies To Treat Heart Burn

Instead of rushing to a doctor, just check your kitchen cabinet. It has all the ingredients that can cure heartburn. These home remedies are natural and have no side-effects.

1. Honey : Honey is a natural treatment for heartburn. As you feel the symptoms of heartburn, eat 1 tablespoon of honey. Alternatively, mix honey in chamomile tea and sip it slowly.

2. Almonds : Snack on 15-20 almonds. After half an hour, you will feel relief in the pain, caused due to heartburn. Almonds will completely vanish the burning sensation. To reduce the instances of heartburn, it is suggested to eat some almonds after every meal.

3. Apple Cider Vinegar : Mix 2 tablespoons of ACV into half cup of water or apple juice. Drink it after each meal. This will help to calm down the upset stomach and make heartburn go away.

4. Aloe Vera Juice : Aloe vera juice is the best remedy for treating really bad heartburn. It will remove the pain and inflammation. Make sure, you use only organic and fresh aloe vera juice.

5. Apple : An apple a day keeps the doctor away. This is absolutely right! Apple contains several beneficial properties. Eat apple for instant relief in heartburn. It neutralizes the acid in your tummy in just 4-5 minutes.

6. Banana : Banana is a natural home remedy for quick heartburn relief. Eat a banana to get rid of severe heartburn.

7. Baking Soda : Mix half spoon of baking soda in a glass, full of water. Drink it. This will provide fast relief in heartburn, originated due to acid reflux.

Eat A Banana Or An Apple

Remedies To Ease Heartburn Body Means

Bananas contain natural antacids that can act as a buffer against acid reflux. If you want to try out the simplest home remedies for heartburn first, try letting a few bananas ripen up nicely and eating one every day. Another option is to try an apple a day. Slice one up and eat it a couple of hours before bedtime to relieve or prevent discomfort.

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Mix Baking Soda With Water

You might have a heartburn remedy at hand in your kitchen without even knowing it. Baking soda can calm some episodes of heartburn by neutralizing your stomach acid.

To do this, dissolve a teaspoon of baking soda in a glass of water and drink it slowly. In fact, you should drink everything slowly when you have heartburn.

help relieve nausea, so some believe it may be worth trying for heartburn, too.

Consider adding grated or diced ginger root to your favorite stir-fry recipes, soups, and other foods. To make ginger tea, steep raw ginger root, dried ginger root, or ginger tea bags in boiling water.

Its probably best to avoid ginger ale, though. Carbonated beverages are a common heartburn trigger, and most brands of ginger ale are made with artificial flavoring rather than the real thing.

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