Heartburn, also known as acid indigestion or gastrointestinal reflux, is a burning sensation, caused by regurgitation of gastric acid into the esophagus. Basically, heartburn appears when acids from the stomach go back up the food pipe. This condition may cause such disorders, as burning in the chest that can actually radiate to the neck, throat, or angle of the jaw, the changes in tastes, coughing and hoarseness.
The heartburn can have different stages of severity and can last for up to several hours. It is also the major symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease, which implies not a one-time, but rather a long-term condition, when stomach contents come back up into the esophagus. Gastroesophageal reflux disease can also cause severe consequences, such as blood loss, weight loss or esophagus damage.
Heartburn is not a severe disease. However, few steps will help preventing this condition and they do not include any medication intake. Drugs are by all means one of the most common heartburn preventive measures, but they are not the only option.
Avoiding any kind of tobacco intake, both through smoking or second-hand smoking, will significantly reduce the risk of heartburn. Staying fit is also an important factor for reduced heartburn, so it can be helpful to lose extra weight with the help of a healthy diet and regular physical activity.
If heartburn is at its initial stage or, considering the risk factors, the heartburn is likely to happen, raising the head of the bed can be one of the effective preventive measures. Gravity can naturally suppress the heartburn symptoms. Anything that will make the head of the bed higher, such as extra pillows or other materials, may be helpful.
Having sufficient amount of rest is also one of the important heartburn preventive measures. Any sort of relaxation procedures can be also an efficient calmative.
Not only are the diet changes important in weight loss. In most of the cases, it is the certain types of food that cause heartburn. That is why it is important to know that food that is a risk factor and avoid consuming it. Sometimes it is not certain foods but certain types of food, as, for example, spicy food or greasy food. In any case, people usually know this about themselves.
As it can be seen, heartburn can be easily prevented without any medication intake.