Heartburn is a burning sensation in the stomach or throat. People, who had experienced these unpleasant sensations would like to get rid of them, but unfortunately it is easier said than done. The reason, why people fail to treat heartburn effectively is because they cannot identify its origin. So, what causes heartburn?

First of all, heartburn symptoms may be caused by gastrointestinal tract diseases, chronic cholecystitis or cholelithiasis. Women often experience heartburns during pregnancy period. According to the statistics, about 40% of the world’s population suffers from heartburns and it affects men and women equally. Although there are many people affected by the disease, it flows variously in different cases: some people experience heartburns as a temporal symptom, while others may have it constantly without actually noticing it.

Why does heartburn appear?

  • Heartburn symptoms may appear due to the influence of the gastric juice on the mucous membrane of the esophagus. It happens when the membrane between the stomach and esophagus fails to do its work and contents of the stomach are neglected into the esophagus. The gastric juice then irritates the mucous and causes burning sensation;
  • During the hiatal hernia, the heartburn will be constant due to the weakness of the diaphragmatic muscle. In this case, the heartburn is provoked by heavy exercises, constipations, overeating and severe coughs;
  • Gastroesophageal Reflex Disease may be also accompanied by burning sensations. During the disease it is problematic for the food to travel along the esophagus and this causes burning sensations. The heartburn in this case will appear when the person bends forward or he/she is lying down;
  • Gastric and duodenal ulcer diseases provoke increased level of acidity, which is a first reason that provokes heartburn. The second reason, why heartburn appears during this disease is that it takes less time for the food to travel through the damaged stomach, but the quantity of unprocessed food increases. The third reason that causes heartburn is the fact that people with duodenal ulcer diseases have problems with food digesting. This problem provokes belch and sometimes, vomiting;
  • Heartburn also often appears after various stomach surgeries (especially after resection);
  • There have also been cases, when heartburn affected people that were not suffering from the gastrointestinal tract diseases. In this case, heartburn is provoked by certain drugs (such as aspirin), overeating or consuming food that requires a lot of time to digest. Such burning sensations are short-termed and pass quickly;
  • Heartburn during pregnancy. Pregnant women are often affected by heartburn during the pregnancy period, which is usually followed by toxemia and vomiting. During the second half of the pregnancy period the pressure on the stomach increases due to the growth of the fetus and this causes heartburn.      

What are heartburn symptoms?

If the burning sensation is intense and constant than the heartburn needs to be examined. It should be examined in any way, as there were cases when heartburn was provoked by heart, vessel or nerve system diseases.   

A simple short-lasting burning sensation doesn’t necessarily mean that you have heartburn. It often appears as a result of overeating or after spicy, highly carbonated food. If you ate an overcooked or fat meal, drank the tea that was too sweet or ate freshly-baked bread and have a burning sensation ‘ it is provoked by the quality of food. If this food brought up heartburn symptoms and it is accompanied by belch or sickness, then it is time to see the doctor.

You can read more information about how to get rid of heartburn.


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