The burning sensation present in the stomach and throat is usually caused by poor digestion and reflux, which is when the contents of the stomach end up in the esophagus causing discomfort, which tends to get worse at bedtime. This is common both in the beginning and the end of pregnancy, but there are some simple strategies that help to relieve the feeling of heartburn and burning sensation.
Natural solutions like taking cold water, eating an apple and trying to relax a bit can be helpful in cases where these symptoms arise after a binge episode or a greasier meal. However, when symptoms are frequent, and reflux is present more than 15 days a month, a doctor should be consulted.
Home remedies for heartburn
Some natural ways to fight heartburn or indigestion are:
- Drink sips of cold water;
- Eat a piece of bread;
- Eat an apple or pear without the peel;
- Suck on a lemon.
These techniques help to push the stomach content back into the stomach, reducing it's acidity.
Medication for heartburn
In some cases it may be necessary to use medication such as domperidone, omeprazole, betanecol, metoclopramide, baclofen or lesogaberan. These drugs act in the stomach, decreasing the production of the gastric juice, which is one of the causes for the burning sensation felt, and should only be taken under medical supervision because they have various side effects, such as headache and constipation.
People who suffer constantly from heartburn can develop damage to the esophagus and erosions to their teeth. So if you have heartburn more than 4 times a week, it is recommended you see a gastroenterologist because he can ask for exams like digestive endoscopy, to evaluate the health of your esophagus and stomach.
Strategies to fight heartburn
To treat heartburn it is important you follow some measures like:
- Rise the head of the bed;
- Lose weight, because abdominal volume also causes heartburn;
- Stop smoking;
- Always avoid greasy, fried and spicy foods;
- Avoid drinking coffee, black tea, hot chocolate and soda;
- Make small meals throughout the day by not eating too much at one time;
- Avoid doing isometric exercises, such as the abdominal board and the usual sit-ups;
- Always lie on your left side, especially if you lie down straight after eating;
- Avoid stressful situations.
Even after using medication and following the cautions mentioned above and the heartburn persists after about 6 months to 1 year, your doctor may recommend an anti-reflux surgery, which involves putting an anti-reflux valve in the stomach.