HomeIndigestionWhy Do I Always Have Heartburn And Indigestion

Why Do I Always Have Heartburn And Indigestion

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That burning, uncomfortable sensation in your chest? Itâs probably heartburn. Heartburn is a very common ailment that affects many people for many reasons. It occurs when digestive acid escapes the stomach and irritates the delicate lining of the esophagus.

Usually, itâs the result of eating certain foods, or simply overeating, and can be treated with over-the-counter antacids. But sometimes, heartburn is a symptom of bigger problems, that require other solutions. Hereâs when to call a doctor:

What Are The Symptoms Of Indigestion

Each persons symptoms may vary. Symptoms may include:

  • Feeling full too soon while eating
  • Feeling pain, burning, and discomfort in your upper belly or abdomen
  • Feeling bloated
  • Burping and loud stomach gurgling
  • Having an upset stomach or vomiting
  • Having diarrhea
  • Having gas

The symptoms of indigestion may look like other health problems. Always see your healthcare provider to be sure.

How Can A Banana Cause Heartburn

Bananas are usually low in acid, so sometimes, they can be recommended as a fruit that can help reduce acid reflux.

But you should know that ripe bananas have a pH value of 5, which does get classified as a mildly acidic fruit. Therefore, if eaten on an empty stomach or eaten in large amounts, bananas may cause acid reflux which in turn causes heartburn.

Another way that a banana can cause heartburn is if the banana is not ripe yet when you eat it. This might cause a trigger within your body that causes acid reflux.

This trigger can also be caused by an underlying disease known as GERD. GERD is also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease.

Eating raw bananas or eating them on an empty stomach can cause your stomach acid to try and travel up into the esophagus, causing GERD.

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Do Not Eat Too Quickly

If you eat too fast, you might end up eating quicker than the food that can be processed inside your stomach.

This will cause heartburn because the stomach will be trying to produce a lot more acid than usual in order to keep up with your pace. Once the food is digested, the extra acid will rise up your throat and give you that heart-burning sensation.

How Is Heartburn Treated

In most cases, heartburn can be treated at home with over-the-counter medications and changes to lifestyle habits that cause the feeling. Occasional heartburn is common and is typically not serious. However, if you have frequent and severe heartburn, reach out to your healthcare provider. This could be a sign of a chronic condition like GERD. GERD can lead to other serious conditions like esophagitis, Barretts esophagus and even cancer. Sometimes, your doctor may want to do an endoscopy to check for underlying medication conditions. An endoscopy is the examination of your digestive tract with a lighted flexible instrument.

Over-the-counter medications for heartburn typically include antacids and acid blockers.

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How To Banish Acid Reflux And Restore Digestive Function

Imagine you went the gym every day and worked out the same muscle. Eventually you would get tired, then weak, and then injured. The digestive system is the same way in that if you over-stress it, it gets tired, then weak, and possibly injured. Here are some ways that you can build and maintain your stomach acid.

Other Causes Of Frequent Heartburn Are Listed Below

  • Eating 2 to 3 hours before bedtime can be one of the reasons behind heartburn. Try to avoid having meals just before we go to our bed. This causes the food to slide into our esophagus and trigger a burning sensation in our chest.
  • Avoid drinking before bedtime. Drinking too much alcohol can invite heartburn problems.

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Is Gerd Dangerous Or Life

GERD isnt life-threatening or dangerous in itself. But long-term GERD can lead to more serious health problems:

  • Esophagitis: Esophagitis is the irritation and inflammation the stomach acid causes in the lining of the esophagus. Esophagitis can cause ulcers in your esophagus, heartburn, chest pain, bleeding and trouble swallowing.
  • Barrett’s esophagus: Barrett’s esophagus is a condition that develops in some people who have long-term GERD. The damage acid reflux can cause over years can change the cells in the lining of the esophagus. Barretts esophagus is a risk factor for cancer of the esophagus.
  • Esophageal cancer: Cancer that begins in the esophagus is divided into two major types. Adenocarcinoma usually develops in the lower part of the esophagus. This type can develop from Barretts esophagus. Squamous cell carcinoma begins in the cells that line the esophagus. This cancer usually affects the upper and middle part of the esophagus.
  • Strictures: Sometimes the damaged lining of the esophagus becomes scarred, causing narrowing of the esophagus. These strictures can interfere with eating and drinking by preventing food and liquid from reaching the stomach.

What Is The Difference Between Heartburn And Acid Reflux

Anxiety and Heartburn, GERD, Acid Reflux

Heartburn is a symptom of acid reflux. Heartburn describes a feeling of burning, pain, or discomfort in the chest that can be quite uncomfortable. You also may a sour or bitter taste in the throat and mouth, and it usually occurs after you eat a big meal or when you lay down.

Not everyone with GERD will experience heartburn. Other symptoms of acid reflux include regurgitation of acid into the throat or mouth, a bitter taste in the mouth, upset stomach, belching, nausea after eating, feeling full, stomach and upper abdomen bloating, dry cough, wheezing, hoarseness, feeling of tightness in the throat, and in some people, vomiting.

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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 don’t seem to help.

Nonprescription antacids are only part of the treatment for heartburn. They can work very well, but these antacids alone usually can’t 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 don’t, adding a nonprescription antacid can be helpful.

How do antacids work?

What if lifestyle changes and antacids don’t 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?

Eat Foods That Are Heartburn Friendly

You dont always have to reach out for medication for fixing health problems. There are some food items that will be able to neutralize your stomach acid and stop that uncomfortable burning sensation inside.

These foods are vegetables, oatmeal, fruits without citric acid, lean meats like chicken, seafood, the whites of eggs, and so on.

All of these will soothe your stomach, but please make sure that you dont eat them too fast.

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Can Gerd Cause Asthma

We dont know the exact relationship between GERD and asthma. More than 75% of people with asthma have GERD. They are twice as likely to have GERD as people without asthma. GERD may make asthma symptoms worse, and asthma drugs may make GERD worse. But treating GERD often helps to relieve asthma symptoms.

The symptoms of GERD can injure the lining of the throat, airways and lungs, making breathing difficult and causing a persistent cough, which may suggest a link. Doctors mostly look at GERD as a cause of asthma if:

  • Asthma begins in adulthood.
  • Asthma symptoms get worse after a meal, exercise, at night and after lying down.
  • Asthma doesnt get better with standard asthma treatments.

If you have asthma and GERD, your healthcare provider can help you find the best ways to handles both conditions the right medications and treatments that wont aggravate symptoms of either disease.

When To See A Doctor About Heartburn Vs Indigestion

If your symptoms of heartburn and/or indigestion dont improve after a few weeks of home remedies and preventive measures, see your doctor.

Chronic heartburn or indigestion issues could be a sign of an underlying medical condition that needs treatment. To get to the root of chronic indigestion or heartburn issues, your doctor may order a few tests, including:

  • a physical exam of your abdomen
  • acid probe tests to measure when stomach acid reaches back into your esophagus
  • imaging tests, such as X-rays and endoscopies , to look at your esophagus and stomach
  • blood or stool tests to rule out bacterial infections that may be causing indigestion
  • pain in your abdomen that doesnt go away
  • frequent vomiting
  • blood in vomit or stools
  • tar-colored stools

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What Can I Do To Prevent Indigestion

There are many things you can do to try to prevent indigestion.

Making changes in your diet and eating habits can help. These include:

  • Eating several small, low-fat meals each day instead of 3 large meals
  • Eating slowly and giving yourself enough time for meals
  • Limiting spicy, fatty, greasy, or high-fiber foods
  • Chewing your food well
  • Limiting or not having any coffee, soda, or alcohol

Avoid medicines that hurt your stomach. These include aspirin and over-the-counter pain and fever medicines . If you do take them, do so after you eat.

Other lifestyle changes that may keep indigestion from happening include:

  • Quitting smoking
  • Finding ways to lower your emotional and physical stress, such as meditation or yoga
  • Exercising before a meal or waiting at least 1 hour after eating

Heartburn Or Heart Attack

A heart attack is when the arteries connected to the heart become blocked. Heartburn, on the other hand, occurs when stomach acid travels back up the esophagus.

Some symptoms of heartburn and a heart attack could be similar, such as chest pain. As a result, some people who are having a heart attack do not take action as they think they have heartburn.

If a person experiences heartburn pain alongside shortness of breath or sweating, this could be a heart-related issue.

Other symptoms of a heart attack can include:

  • discomfort in the chest, such as squeezing, fullness, pressure, or pain
  • lightheadedness
  • pain or discomfort in one or both arms, stomach, neck, jaw, or back

If a person has some or all of these symptoms, they should seek emergency medical attention. In the words of the American Heart Association , If in doubt, check it out.

Knowing how to distinguish a heart attack from heartburn can save lives.

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Are There Any Tests For Heartburn

If it is obvious from the symptoms that a person has heartburn, no tests or exams may be necessary. Advice in regard to lifestyle modifications, diet, or medications may begin immediately.

If your health care professional is not sure about the diagnosis, or if he or she is concerned about damage done by chronic heartburn, tests may be ordered. This is true especially if the patient has already been prescribed medications that are not relieving the heartburn.

There is no simple blood test for heartburn. The tests used to diagnose heartburn include the following:

Is It Possible To Get Heartburn When You Havent Eaten

How to Completely Cure GERD and Heartburn

As noted earlier, yes, it is possible to get heartburn when you havent eaten.

While eating food is often a triggering factor for heartburn symptoms to begin manifesting, it is not always that direct of a relationship.

Remember that the systems in our body are always working even when we arent actively moving or eating something.

Since these systems are always in motion, the potential for negative symptoms, like heartburn, is possible at any time.

Still, there are some specific reasons why you might be experiencing heartburn even when you didnt just eat a meal or drank a certain beverage, and were going to go into some of them and how to address them in more detail.

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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.

How Is Indigestion Treated

You should not have foods or medicines that cause indigestion. It is also helpful to avoid stressful situations. Your symptoms may feel better if you:

  • Quit smoking
  • Take medicines that weaken or neutralize stomach acid

Your healthcare provider may suggest you take medicines that:

  • Help your stomach move food more quickly into your small intestine
  • Kill bacteria if tests show you have the H. pylori bacteria in your stomach
  • Help calm the gut’s nervous system

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Complications Of Gerd And Acid Reflux

Ulcers Stomach acid in the esophagus can cause ulcers. These ulcers have the potential to bleed. To check for bleeding ulcers, your doctor may recommend a stool sample test called hemocult.

Stricture Damage caused by acid reflux can cause the esophagus to scar and narrow. This is called stricture. Over time, stricture could cause a blockage of food and require treatment. The scar tissue is a result of ulcers that occur and heal over time.

Lung and throat problems Acid reflux in the throat could lead to irritation or inflammation of the vocal cords or a sore throat. If the acid is inhaled into the lungs, it could cause aspiration pneumonia or symptoms of asthma. If the acid reflux is chronic, it could eventually cause permanent lung damage including pulmonary fibrosis or bronchiectasis.

Barrettâs esophagus Barrettâs esophagus occurs when the cells in the lower esophagus transform. The transformation is usually caused by damage to the esophageal lining, most often from chronic acid reflux or GERD. There is a small chance these cells may develop into cancer. Patients with Barretts esophagus should have an upper endoscopy done periodically to look for early signs of cancer.

Esophageal cancer Barrettâs esophagus is a major risk factor for developing esophageal cancer. The rate of esophageal cancer is on the rise, but relatively few people with GERD develop Barrettâs esophagus and even fewer people with Barrettâs esophagus develop esophageal cancer.

Why Do I Get Heartburn When I Havent Eaten: The Nine Reasons

Growing up, you probably heard your parents talk about heartburn when it would affect them.

Unfortunately, as you age, at some point, it started to affect you, too.

Heartburn is something that nearly everyone in the world has experienced at one time or another, and usually, people know what they ate that caused them that kind of grief.

Typically, we link heartburn to foods that we eat and the beverages we consume.

Sometimes, though, unique situations can occur, and you will get heartburn that leaves you wondering, Why do I get heartburn when I havent eaten anything that might have triggered it?

At the very minimum, we assume that the parts of our body that cause heartburn are only in action whenever our body is processing food.

What is going on when we get heartburn when we havent eaten?

We will give you nine potential reasons why the fiery feeling is plaguing you in your chest despite not having eaten anything.

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When To Go To The Doctor

Usually, indigestion only happens once in a while, like after eating certain foods that don’t agree with you. But you’ll want to see the doctor if you get indigestion even when you’re eating healthy foods, exercising, and getting enough sleep.

You may need to be examined or have stomach X-rays or other tests to make sure your indigestion is not a sign of another problem in your digestive tract. Depending on what the doctor finds, you might need to make changes in your diet or take medicine.

Be sure to tell your parent or talk to a doctor if these things happen in addition to your indigestion:

  • vomiting , especially if you see blood in your vomit
  • weight loss
  • frequent or intense stomach pain
  • black or bloody bowel movements

These can be signs of other problems, so be sure to talk to a doctor if you experience one or several of these symptoms.

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Things To Stop Doing If You Have Gerd

When you suffer from chronic heartburn that can be associated with gastroesophageal reflux disease , this condition can affect your entire life. It may be necessary to stop eating some of your favorite foods. The heartburn may interfere with your sleep. It may even interfere with your availability to work well.

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