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Heartburn caused by acidity

I have a dull ache in my chest area like heartburn, but have it almost all the time and now going into a month.
(November 7, 2010)

Cold Water And HeartBurn

Acidity heartburn can be described as a condition, in which a person experiences a severe burning sensation in the chest are, just behind the breastbone. It is a very common problem and most people have suffered from acidity and heartburn at some point or the other during their life. Hence, an occasional instance of acidity heartburn is not really a cause for concern. However, if this becomes a frequent occurrence, it can interfere with your day to day activities and your daily routine and hence, it should be checked, as it may be caused by an underlying condition, that is a bit more serious. People who suffer from chronic heartburn problems often consider acidity heartburn as a disease.

Acidity heartburn usually occurs when the acids in the stomach back up into the esophagus. When you swallow anything, the sphincter of the esophagus relaxes, so that the food or liquid can move to the stomach. It is this sphincter that prevents the swallowed food and liquid from coming back up into the esophagus. However, in case of a weakened sphincter, the acids of the stomach can flow into the esophagus, which is the main cause of acidity heartburn. The condition will probably feel much worse, in case you are lying down or are bent over, when it happens. There are certain foods that can increase the levels of acid in the stomach or that cause the sphincter to relax, leading to acidity and heartburn problems. Some of the foods that are known to cause or aggravate acidity heartburn are coffee, spices, oily and fired foods, chocolate, alcohol, tomato and many citrus fruits. Excessive stress, having large meals, eating just before bed time and exercising after a meal, are other factors that could also lead to acidity heartburn. It has been observed that foods which are alkaline reduce heartburn related problems.

There are a few symptoms that are associated with acidity and heartburn. Some of the most common acidity heartburn symptoms are:

• A burning sensation in the chest area that is usually felt soon after eating, or at night, while sleeping
• Pain in the abdominal area as well as the chest while bending or lying down 

In some rare cases, people may also experience swallowing or breathing problems, during an acidity heartburn attack. However, this occurs only in the most severe cases and therefore, requires immediate medical attention.

Fortunately, it is not too difficult to treat acidity. While many doctors may recommend the use of over the counter medicines like antacids and so on, most people prefer using home remedies to deal with the condition. This could be because natural remedies are very effective in reducing the discomfort caused by heartburn and they generally have fewer side effects, as compared to commercial medication. Moreover, home remedies are a lot easier on the pocket.

Some of the steps that can be taken at home to prevent and treat acidity heartburn problems are:

• Avoiding foods that trigger off heartburn, especially alcohol, spices, tomato sauce and coffee
• Eating smaller meals that are easier to digest
• Ensuring that 5 to 6 small meals are eaten at regular intervals throughout the day
• Maintaining a healthy weight range, to reduce the pressure on the abdomen, as well as the stomach
• Wearing loose and comfortable clothing, as clothes that are too tight may apply pressure on the waist, as well as the lower esophageal sphincter.
• Sitting up for at least two to three hours after every meal
• Elevating the head of the bed, so that the acid does not flow back up into the esophagus easily.
• Cutting unhealthy habits like smoking

While the home remedies for acidity heartburn are fairly safe for most people, it is best to consult a doctor, before using any of them. If the condition does not improve in spite of the use of these home remedies, then it is important to consult a doctor, for medical treatment options. People who suffer from heartburn twice a week should not waste any time in seeking medical attention either.

Submitted by E L on November 7, 2010 at 10:56


The kind of ache you are describing sounds like heartburn caused due to excessive acidity. However, it is advisable for you to get a medical examination done. This is because anything that is bothering you so persistently for a month now merit a medical examination to rule out anything more serious that simple heartburn caused due to acidity. Since the area you are affected in, the chest, is a somewhat delicate one, it is better to rule out anything more serious right at the start. This way, at least you are not taking any kind of unnecessary risk with your health.

If indeed you are suffering from heartburn, there are some fairly easy to follow recipes that you can find to take care of the situation in your kitchen. The simplest ones are also the most effective. But the first thing you should do is to make sure you are not adding to the problem. You can do this by checking what you eat. It is necessary to cut out spice and oily food from your diet to begin with. These are the primary causes of acidity. Spices, especially, can irritate your condition further and cause more harm to an already sensitized stomach lining. Take care that you eliminate spice completely. Doing so for a day alone will help your cause tremendously. Have cool water. This is also an excellent solution to neutralize acid build up in your body. Bananas are an excellent acid neutralizer as well. If you can, make a milk shake with fresh, chilled milk and bananas. This will make you feel better almost instantly. Make it a point to sip, not gulp the milk. Sipping will run in down more smoothly. You must also make it a point to have chilled milk about three to four times a day. This will also help you along. If you cannot have that much milk, try to have the same quantity of yogurt instead. This will make a difference to your acidity, and will consequently also reduce the heartburn. Make a paste of fresh mint leaves. A simple drink made of a teaspoon of this paste, a pinch of rock salt and diluted plain yogurt will help to ease your condition a great deal. Apples are a great way to kill the excessive acid caused due to indigested food. Make it a point to eat an apple daily. Also, do remember, apples eaten with peels are healthier.

Submitted by M S on July 25, 2008 at 09:56


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