If you are one of those afflicted with heartburn and you are experiencing the condition once occasionally or chronically, then you are surely eager to find the best remedy for it. You should know that when it comes to heartburn conditions, there are heartburn remedies available in the form of medications, such as H2 blockers, antacids and proton pump inhibitors. All these are helpful against the condition but long-term use is not advisable as it can result to various side effects.
In case of a frequent heartburn attack, the best thing that you have to do is to have it diagnosed by a physician to rule out any other underlying causes or to determine that it is not a symptom of GERD or gastroesophageal reflux disease. Once you are assured that your condition is a simple and mild heartburn problem, you can discuss the possible treatment options with your physician. Take note that although the condition is mild, treatment is still necessary to prevent it from worsening, as untreated heartburn problems can lead to other health conditions like Barrett’s esophagus and esophagitis.
Lifestyle and diet changes are among the most commonly suggested remedy against heartburn conditions. When it comes to medications, you can opt for the ones mentioned above but make sure to ask your physician about this before you start consuming it. Aside from medications, there are alternative remedies for the condition as well. These remedies may include chamomile tea and apple cider vinegar, which are considered as some of the best remedies against the condition. Here are some effective reliefs that you can resort to:
Avoid Foods that can Trigger Heartburn
Part of the treatment plan is to make sure that you keep track of the foods that you consume. It is important to make sure that you are aware of the foods that you should avoid in order to prevent heartburn symptoms from worsening. Some of the foods and drinks that can trigger a heartburn problem include the following:
- Citrus fruits and juices
- Alcoholic beverages
- Tomatoes and other tomato-based products
- Caffeinated and carbonated drinks
Eat Frequently and in Smaller Proportion
- Large meals can cause the stomach to expand, thus resulting to increased upward pressure on the esophageal sphincter. When too much pressure on the LES occurs, this can cause the sphincter to function improperly.
Wait for 2 to 3 Hours after a Meal before going to Bed
- Gravity helps prevent the stomach acid from going back to the esophagus and helps improve the digestion of foods within the stomach and intestines. That is the reason why it is necessary to stay standing up right after having a meal instead of lying down immediately.
Keep your Head Elevated when Sleeping
- If you lay down flat on your back, the contents in your stomach are pressed against the LES, thus triggering a heartburn attack. If you can keep your head elevated and higher than your stomach, the gravity can help reduce the pressure on your digestive system. You can keep your head elevated a few inches when sleeping by placing two pillows on your head or putting books or bricks under your pillow.
- Take note that nicotine can cause the esophageal sphincter to relax, thus keeping it from functioning properly. Smoking can also stimulate stomach acid production.
- Stress is being linked to heartburn, as a stressed individual can resort to activities or behaviors that can trigger the condition. As much as possible, you should try learning relaxation techniques to relieve stress and prevent the condition.
Aside from doing some modifications in your lifestyle and eating habits, you can also try the following against heartburn symptoms:
- Baking Soda: this is considered as a natural antacid. You can use this to alleviate heartburn temporarily by dissolving a teaspoon of it into 8 ounces of water. However, the use of baking soda has some drawbacks as well. When you put baking soda to water, it can release carbon dioxide that can cause a fizz. This fizz may open the LES and causes you to burp, thus relieving pressure from bloating. Unfortunately, this can also open the LES, thus allowing stomach contents to flow back into the esophagus.
- DGL: DGL or deglycyrrhizinated licorice is another helpful remedy for heartburn. This can be used in the form of capsules or chewable tablets. However, make sure that you avoid using DGL if you are suffering hypertension or receiving treatment for such condition.
- Bananas: this may serve as a natural antacid that can help neutralize the acid in the stomach.
- Chamomile Tea: this can also help neutralize the acid within the stomach and is an effective stress reliever.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: lots of people suffering from heartburn actually benefitted from using apple cider vinegar. This natural relief can be obtained in the form of capsule, tablet or liquid.
- Ginger: the use of fresh ginger is considered as an age-old remedy against heartburn. This is also useful in treating nausea and vomiting. You can use this for the condition by eating it raw or you can use it as a tea.
- Turmeric: this is helpful in stimulating digestion and preventing the accumulation of acid within the stomach. You can use turmeric in your dishes but if you do not want to, you can opt for the capsule form and consume it before having your meal.
- Aloe Vera Juice: the juice extracted from aloe vera is helpful in soothing the irritation in the esophagus. However, make sure that you opt for the preparation that is specifically prepared for consumption or internal use.
Then again, although these remedies are all-natural, it is still necessary to consult your physician prior to its consumption to make sure that it will not cause any complications with the medications you are already consuming or your current health status. You can also opt for these as natural acid reflux remedies.