Managing Heartburn

Heartburn, also referred to as acid reflux, occurs when the esophagus muscle opens at the wrong time, allowing food and stomach acid to flow back up into the esophagus. A burning sensation and other bothersome symptoms can occur. If you experience heartburn, there are some things you can do to try and manage your symptoms.

Change your Diet

Your diet could be to blame for your heartburn symptoms. To manage your heartburn, you should avoid foods and drinks that could be triggers such as onions, tomatoes, spicy food, fatty foods, peppermint, chocolate, and caffeine. Keeping a log of the foods you eat and how you’re feeling can help you determine which foods or drinks you should stay away from.

Check Your Habits

Certain habits could be contributing to your heartburn as well. Drinking alcohol, especially before bed, and smoking nicotine can increase heartburn symptoms. You should avoid eating meals before bed, large meals, eating too quickly, and overeating. If you are overweight, this could be worsening your heartburn. You might try losing weight through a healthy diet and regular exercise. If your heartburn comes after exercise, make sure that you are drinking enough water and not eating within a few hours before working out.

Talk with a Specialist

If your heartburn is occurring more than twice a week, if you have difficulty swallowing, or have persistent nausea or vomiting, you should see a doctor for your heartburn symptoms. If left untreated, heartburn can cause damage to your esophagus. Talking with an ENT specialist can help you understand what’s causing your heartburn and how to manage it. Your doctor might recommend taking an antacid after meals to help to neutralize stomach acid and reduce heartburn. If you are in the Tuscaloosa AL area, you can visit Tuscaloosa Ear, Nose, & Throat for your heartburn symptoms.

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