What triggers heartburn?
Heartburn is the burning sensation in the chest due to backflow or reflux of the acidic stomach contents into the food pipe (esophagus). Heartburn is a major symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. The food pipe or esophagus is a tube that connects the mouth to the stomach. The lower end of the esophagus has a muscular valve called the lower esophageal sphincter or LES. The LES guards the reflux of stomach contents into the food pipe. In gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), the LES does not close properly allowing the stomach contents to leak back or reflux into the food pipe and irritate it.
Besides certain foods, several other factors may cause heartburn. They include:
- Sleeping or lying down right after a meal
- Rigorous exercise especially after a meal
- Obesity or being overweight
- Hiatal hernia (a condition in which the stomach bulges up into the chest through an opening in the diaphragm, the muscle that separates the two areas)
- Certain medications, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), blood pressure medications, and medications used to treat asthma, heart diseases, anxiety, depression, and cancer
- Stress and anxiety
Can multivitamins cause heartburn?
- Avoid taking multivitamins on empty stomach
- Take multivitamins with food
- Do not take multivitamins right before exercise
- Try the easy-to-digest forms of multivitamins, such as chewable tablets, powders, and dissolvable forms
- Avoid mega doses of multivitamins, such as the once a month or once a week dose
- Take smaller daily doses of multivitamins
- Try meeting your daily nutrient needs through a diet
How do you treat heartburn?
The treatment for heartburn involves:
- Lifestyle and home remedies:
- Eat small meals
- Eat your food slowly
- Avoid certain foods and beverages, such as spicy and oily foods, citrus, tomato, mint, garlic, chocolate, tea, coffee, carbonated drinks, and alcohol
- Do not lie down right after eating
- Do not snack close to bedtime
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Do not smoke
- Antacids to neutralize stomach acid
- H2 blockers to decrease acid production
- Foaming agents coat the stomach to prevent reflux
- Proton pump inhibitors reduce the amount of acid the stomach makes
- Prokinetics help strengthen the lower esophageal sphincter (LES); they empty the stomach faster and reduce acid reflux
- Surgery: If the medications do not provide lasting relief and the symptoms are severely interfering with everyday activities, your doctor may recommend surgery options, which include:
- LINX device placement: The procedure involves surgically placing a ring (LINX device) around the outside of the lower end of the esophagus.
- Fundoplication: The procedure creates an artificial valve using the upper part of the stomach.
Top beyond food what triggers heartburn and GERD Related Articles
8 Foods and Drinks That Help with Acid RefluxWhat is acid reflux and how can you treat it at home? Learn the top foods and drinks that can ease your symptoms and help you find relief. GERD symptoms start with acid reflux and then can progress to include chest pain, nausea and vomiting, sore throat, hoarseness, coughing or wheezing, excess saliva, inflamed gum tissue, and even acid erosion of your teeth. Gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, is when stomach acid, food, and fluids move up from the stomach to the esophagus. Learn more about GERD, its common symptoms, how it's diagnosed, and your treatment options.
What Does Chest Pain on the Left Side Above a Female Breast Mean?Chest pain on the left side above a female breast can have a variety of causes. Learn the signs of chest pain on the left side, what may cause it, how doctors diagnose it, and what you can do to treat it.
What Is Esophageal pH Monitoring?Esophageal pH monitoring is used to measure the reflux (regurgitation or backwash) of acid from the stomach into the esophagus and to diagnose gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Side effects of the procedure are few but may include mild discomfort in the back of the throat while the catheter is placed, and swallowing.
Fundoplication (Acid Reflux Surgery)Fundoplication is a surgical procedure for treating GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease). The procedure is to help GERD symptoms including heartburn. Eighty percent of patients with GERD also have a hiatal hernia, and during the fundoplication procedure, the hernial sac may also be surgically fixed. The procedure can be done with laparotomy, thoracotomy, or laparoscopy.
GERD PictureThe stomach contents regurgitate and back up (reflux) into the esophagus The food in the stomach is partially digested by stomach acid and enzymes. See a picture of Gastroesophageal Reflux (GERD) and learn more about the health topic.
GERD (Acid Reflux, Heartburn)Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), also called acid reflux, can cause symptoms like heartburn, chest pain, regurgitation, and nausea. Learn about causes, diagnosis, treatment and prevention.
GERD QuizWho is at risk for developing GERD? Are you? Take this quiz to learn what GERD is, if you're at risk, and what you can do about it.
Heartburn is a burning sensation experienced from acid reflux (GERD). Symptoms of heartburn include chest pain, burning in the throat, difficulty swallowing, the feeling of food sticking in the throat, and a burning feeling in the chest.
Causes of heartburn include dietary habits, lifestyle habits, and medical causes.
Treatments for heartburn include lifestyle changes, OTC medication,prescription medication, and surgery.
Heartburn Foods SlidesLearn the symptoms of heartburn and which foods cause heartburn or GERD. Discover home remedies and which foods may provide treatment for heartburn relief.
Acid Reflux (Heartburn, GERD): Symptoms & RemediesHeartburn is a symptom of acid reflux that causes chest pain when stomach acid backs up into the esophagus. Heartburn symptoms may mimic chest pain that occurs during a heart attack. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) may produce other symptoms.
How Does Acid Reflux Make You Feel? 10 Common SymptomsAcid reflux can cause you to feel pain in your chest and a sour taste in your mouth. Find out more about acid reflux and 10 common symptoms that people with the condition often experience.
How Long Does GERD Take to Heal?GERD is a medical condition in which acidic liquids in the stomach leak up into the esophagus. Minor cases of GERD can heal in less than a month while moderate cases can take 6 to 12 weeks of treatment.
Ways to Relieve Acid Reflux (GERD, Heartburn)Most people have experienced some sort of pain or discomfort following a large meal or a particular food that didn’t quite agree with their stomach. Acid reflux symptoms can happen without a specific underlying condition.
What Is the Quickest Way to Get Rid of Heartburn?The quickest way to get rid of heartburn is taking antacids, which help neutralize stomach acid. There are also natural remedies that can relieve heartburn.