Heartburn, also known as acid indigestion, pyrosis, or cardialgia, is a common burning sensation in your chest (behind the breastbone), or in your epigastrium (upper central abdomen). If it’s an occasional heartburn, which is rather common for many people, there’s no need to panic, as most people are able to manage the heartburn discomfort on their own by simply taking over-the-counter medications, or changing the lifestyle. If you experience a frequent heartburn with pain rising in your chest and often radiating to the throat, neck, or jaw angle, it might signal a more serious health issue, which undoubtedly requires a medical attention.
But common doesn’t mean tolerable, that’s you don’t have to suffer from it. And surely it must be treated in time, because, though being usually associated with gastric acid or reflux regurgitation, which is the main gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) symptom, sometimes heartburn may also be of ischemic heart disease symptom. In either way, people experiencing heartburn sensations should understand that prolonging is not the way out of the problem, but a deteriorating factor that can cause even more serious health problems.
Common Heartburn Triggers: Foods & Habits
In order to decide on what way to treat your heartburn (by means of conventional heartburn treatment methods or heartburn remedies), one should be aware of what triggers it and what its main symptoms are. There’s a range of foods & habits that can surely contribute to your heartburn, thus causing the following symptoms:
- burning sensation inside the chest;
- rising bile in the throat;
- sour or bitter taste in the mouth;
If you experience these symptoms on a daily basis, be sure that the following foods or habits may be the cause of that, which speaks of an unhealthy diet. That’s why it’s advisable to pay attention to your diet and get rid of bad habits:
- spicy, fatty & fried foods;
- coffee & caffeine beverages or foods;
- soda beverages;
- snacking before bed (don’t eat 2-3 hours before bed or laying down, but give your body time to digest the food eaten);
- overweight/obesity (losing weight can help stop regular discomfort occurrences);
- smoking (affects the esophagus and the digestive system; advisable to quit or at least reduce the amount of cigarettes smoked per day);
- sedentary lifestyle (help your body digest the food eaten by simply going for a walk after a heavy meal);
- tight-fitting clothing (avoid wearing belts or clothes that are tight around the waist).
Heartburn Remedies: Treatments & Drugs, Lifestyle & Home Remedies
People experiencing heartburn pain can relieve it by means of over-the-counter medications, which include the following options:
- antacids to neutralize stomach acid (Mylanta, Rolaids, Maalox, Tums ‘ provide quick pain relief, but, if overused, cause side effects (diarrhea, constipation);
- medications to reduce acid production (H-2-receptor blockers: famotidine (Pepcid AC), cimetidine (Tagamet HB), ranitidine (Zantac 25, Zantac 75, Zantac 150), and nizatidine (Axid AR);
- medications to block acid production and heal the esophagus (proton pump inhibitors: omeprazole (Prilosec OTC) and lansoprazole (Prevacid 24 HR).
Or you may relief your heartburn pain by making small changes, like:
- maintain a healthy weight;
- avoid heartburn triggering foods & drinks;
- avoid tight-fitting clothing;
- don’t smoke;
- elevate the head of your bed;
- eat smaller meals;
- don’t lie down after a meal.
Heartburn home remedies also proved to relief the pyrosis pain, and include the following:
- chamomile/peppermint tea;
- baking soda & water (mix ?-1 tsp. of baking soda per glass of water);
- apple cider vinegar (1-2 tsp., or mix with honey (2:1 ratio);
- lemon juice (mix 1tsp. of lemon juice per half a glass of water);
- pickle juice (take 1-2 drinks);
- yogurt (excellent for pregnant women);
- almonds (chew a handful to ease the discomfort);
- pineapple (eat 1-2 fresh slices)
- chewing gum (stimulates quick clearing and washing away of the acid accumulated in the gut);
- slippery elm (mix 1-2 tbsp. with water and drink after meals and at bedtime);
- licorice (has natural stomach healing properties);
- aloe (1/2 cup before meal, reduced esophagus inflammation);
- ginger (cook, sip or chew);
- celery (excellent for pregnant women);
- mustard (take 1-2 spoonful).
The bulk of heartburn remedies makes occasional heartburn easy to relief, but if you’re suffering from persistent heartburn symptoms experiencing them on a daily basis, be sure to visit your doctor’s office.
More information about how to get rid of heartburn.