Which Strategy Should Be Used By Someone Experiencing Heartburn Heartburn: 10 remedies and when to see a doctor

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Which Strategy Should Be Used By Someone Experiencing Heartburn

We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.Heartburn is a medical condition in which the contents of the stomach move backward and upward into the food pipe. Heartburn is also known as gastrointestinal reflux.The diaphragm and a muscle called the lower esophageal sphincter usually prevent heartburn. However, this muscle can sometimes relax and leave the food pipe unprotected from stomach acid.A person might experience heartburn when stomach acid comes into contact with the lining of the food pipe. This can cause the following symptoms:a feeling of burning behind the breastbone, neck, and throattaste changescoughingvoice hoarseness that is made worse by eating, leaning forward, and lying downThe discomfort of heartburn can last for several hours and may develop into a condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. GERD can cause frequent heartburn, food sticking, damage to the food pipe, blood loss, and loss of weight.This article provides 10 simple remedies for heartburn.Share on PinterestHeartburn may progress into a condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD.There is a range of measures people can put in place to prevent and treat the symptoms of heartburn. Not all remedies work or are safe for everyone, however. It is important to speak with a doctor about the best solution for you.Simple remedies for heartburn relief include the following:Smoking cessation: Quit smoking and avoiding secondhand smoke.Adapt clothing: Wear loose-fitting clothing to prevent unnecessary pressure on the stomach.Consider prescription medications: People with heartburn should also speak with their doctor regarding the use of prescription medications and whether they are right for the individual.Manage body weight: People who are overweight or obese may find that reducing body weight can help. A diet and exercise weight-loss program can help to reduce symptoms of acid reflux.Each person reacts to these changes differently, however, so it is important to speak with a healthcare provider before losing too much weight.Raise the head of the bed: Raising the head of the bed can allow gravity to reduce heartburn symptoms. Placing blocks under the top bedposts that raise the bed by between 6 and 8 inches may work.Another option is inserting foam wedges between the mattress and box spring to raise the angle of the head of the bed. Pillows are not effective in reducing heartburn symptoms.Try over-the-counter (OTC) medications: People with heartburn should speak with their doctor about OTC medications for symptom relief. A doctor may recommend antacids, acid reducers, including famotidine, or acid blockers, such as lansoprazole and omeprazole.Various antacids are available to purchase online.Use herbal preparations: The use of certain herbal preparations may also be useful.Some recommended options for treating the symptoms of GERD include:licoriceslippery elmchamomilemarshmallowIberogast, the brand name for a combination of several herbs that a number of reviews have shown to be effective as a GERD treatmentIt is important for people to speak with their doctor about potential side effects and drug interactions before starting any herbal supplements. Various herbal remedies are available online.Try acupuncture: Although there is limited evidence to support its use, acupuncture may be beneficial in relieving the symptoms of heartburn in some people.Relax: Stress and tension can cause a wide range of unwanted side effects, including heartburn. Relaxation techniques, such as progressive muscle relaxation, meditation, or yoga, could provide relief for some symptoms.Make some simple changes to the diet: There are certain dietary triggers that can affect the occurrence and severity of heartburn.People with heartburn should avoid the following foods:spicy or greasy foodschocolatecaffeinated drinks like coffeetomato productsgarlicpeppermintalcoholfizzy drinksPeople should sit upright for 3 or more hours after a meal to reduce heartburn symptoms. People should also eat smaller meals and avoid eating in the 2 to 3 hours before sleep.Share on PinterestQuitting smoking and avoiding passive smoking can reduce the risk of developing GERD.The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases recommends calling a doctor immediately if someone has any of the following symptoms:large amounts of vomiting or vomiting that is forcefulgreen, yellow, or bloody vomit, or vomit that looks like coffee groundsbreathing difficulties after vomitingmouth or throat pain while eatingpainful or difficult swallowingFactors that increase the risk of developing GERD include:pregnancya hiatal herniasmoking and passive smokingobesitycertain medical conditions, including dry mouth, asthma, delayed stomach emptying, and sclerodermasome medications, such as those for treating asthma, allergies, pain, high blood pressure, depression, and insomniadietary irritants, including alcohol, caffeine, fizzy drinks, chocolate, and acidic foods, and juicesThe possible complications of heartburn include ulcers, bleeding, and GERD. Changes to cells in the food pipe may also occur, leading to a condition called Barrett’s esophagus that increases the risk of cancer of the food pipe.Other complications include food pipe inflammation and a range of breathing problems that can include:The food pipe can also narrow, causing a condition known as an esophageal stricture.

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Can food allergy play a role in acid reflux?

Click here to find out more about acid reflux: https://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/related-conditions/gastroesophageal-reflux-disease.aspx.

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