Pyrosis, also known as acid indigestion or heartburn, is characterized by a painful, burning sensation by the breastbone and may spread to the upper chest, neck, throat or jaw. It may be caused by overeating, increased pressure on the stomach, and most importantly, gastroesophageal reflux disease.
Prevent Heartburn – Diet and Health Tips
People who love to eat spicy food or are used to overeating are prone to heartburn. They can reduce servings of the food they eat to avoid pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter and essentially prevent heartburn. Eating small amounts in frequent intervals may also ease the pain. Foods that are grilled, roasted and baked can reduce the risk of pyrosis. People with nighttime reflux, or the condition in which contents in the stomach go back to the esophagus, may want to have their dinner three hours before bedtime to prevent heartburn. It would also help to lie down in a slightly inclined position with the head elevated. At daytime, heartburn can be warded off by walking to keep upright after eating.
Heartburn Medication – Approved Options
There are a number of nonprescription drug treatments designed to alleviate the symptoms of heartburn. A common heartburn medication is antacid, which is also used in ulcer-related pain. Antacids, which contain the ingredient simethicone that eliminates gas in the stomach, should not be used without consulting a doctor since it can cause diarrhea, stomach cramps and constipation. A heartburn medication that works differently from antacids is called a proton pump inhibitor, which lowers stomach acid production. Histamine antagonists or H2 blockers such as Zantac also functions the same way as proton pump inhibitors. Doctors should be consulted before combining antacids and acid reducers, since it may lead to heart-related side effects.
Heartburn Cures – Home Remedies
Drinking hot water is the probably the simplest way to calm a stomach experiencing heartburn. People may find relief in drinking milk, but this home remedy does not apply to those with lactose intolerance. Bananas, apples and papayas are some fruits highly recommended as heartburn cures. A cup of ginger tea or yogurt can aid digestion, in case heartburn is triggered by overeating. A solution of one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and one-half cup of water can also alleviate symptoms. Certain natural supplements, like coral calcium, ease the pain by balancing the acidity of the body. Water with baking soda has also been found to address the burning sensation.