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How To Know If It’s Heartburn

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What Is The Difference Between Heartburn And Acid Reflux

Heart Attack vs. Heartburn: How to Tell the Difference?

Heartburn is a symptom of acid reflux. Heartburn describes a feeling of burning, pain, or discomfort in the chest that can be quite uncomfortable. You also may a sour or bitter taste in the throat and mouth, and it usually occurs after you eat a big meal or when you lay down.

Not everyone with GERD will experience heartburn. Other symptoms of acid reflux include regurgitation of acid into the throat or mouth, a bitter taste in the mouth, upset stomach, belching, nausea after eating, feeling full, stomach and upper abdomen bloating, dry cough, wheezing, hoarseness, feeling of tightness in the throat, and in some people, vomiting.

Common Symptoms Of Heartburn

If you’ve got a burning feeling in your chest just behind your breastbone that starts after you eat, it might be heartburn. The symptoms could last from a few minutes to several hours.

Heartburn begins when stomach acid splashes up into your esophagus, a tube that connects the back of your throat and stomach. Besides the burning feeling in your chest, you may also get:

  • Chest pain, especially after you bend over, lie down, or eat
  • Burning at the back of your throat
  • Fluid at the back of your throat that tastes hot, sour, acidic, or salty
  • Long-term cough, sore throat, or hoarseness

Telling your doctor about these symptoms is usually all they need to make a diagnosis of heartburn. But they may ask you to take special tests to find out how severe the problem is or to keep an eye on your treatment.

What Is Gastroesophageal Reflux

Gastroesophageal reflux , also called reflux, is when food and acid from the stomach go back up into the esophagus. This causes an uncomfortable feeling in the chest, often called heartburn.

With GER, reflux happens after nearly every meal and causes noticeable discomfort. After eating, people with GER feel a burning sensation in the chest, neck, and throat.

While it’s more common in adults, kids, teens, and even babies can have gastroesophageal reflux.

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What Does Chronic Heartburn Feel Like

What does heartburn feel like when itâs about to become permanent? Once you get chronic heartburn, youâll experience the same symptoms as above. But as youâre contracting the disease, youâll likely experience the following:

  • Difficulty swallowing your food: Weâre not just talking about food getting stuck in your throat, although that can be the case as well. You might not be able to squeeze food down the back of your throat, period, even if itâs something as simple as water. Youâll feel like you have an enormous phantom lump, but your throat might not be sore.
  • Continual, loud burping: Empty burping is another indication of chronic heartburn. Even if youâre not eating, you might experience enormous bursts of belching. Sometimes these might be slightly painful.
  • Constant bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth: Since heartburn prompts stomach acid to travel up the esophagus, you might continually experience a nasty, bitter taste on your tongue or in the back of your throat.
  • Pain when lying down: You might begin to notice acid traveling back up your throat when you sleep at night. Some individuals end up tipping the head of the bed up a few inches so that the body remains slightly inclined during sleep to prevent this occurrence.
  • Chest burning when stressed out: Heartburn sometimes responds to stress, even if you havenât eaten recently. You might feel burning pangs in your chest and throat when stressing out or getting anxious.

When To See A Doctor About Heartburn Vs Indigestion

Heartburn  All you need to know about its causes and ...

If your symptoms of heartburn and/or indigestion dont improve after a few weeks of home remedies and preventive measures, see your doctor.

Chronic heartburn or indigestion issues could be a sign of an underlying medical condition that needs treatment. To get to the root of chronic indigestion or heartburn issues, your doctor may order a few tests, including:

  • a physical exam of your abdomen
  • acid probe tests to measure when stomach acid reaches back into your esophagus
  • imaging tests, such as X-rays and endoscopies , to look at your esophagus and stomach
  • blood or stool tests to rule out bacterial infections that may be causing indigestion
  • pain in your abdomen that doesnt go away
  • frequent vomiting
  • blood in vomit or stools
  • tar-colored stools

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How Is Heartburn Treated

In most cases, heartburn can be treated at home with over-the-counter medications and changes to lifestyle habits that cause the feeling. Occasional heartburn is common and is typically not serious. However, if you have frequent and severe heartburn, reach out to your healthcare provider. This could be a sign of a chronic condition like GERD. GERD can lead to other serious conditions like esophagitis, Barretts esophagus and even cancer. Sometimes, your doctor may want to do an endoscopy to check for underlying medication conditions. An endoscopy is the examination of your digestive tract with a lighted flexible instrument.

Over-the-counter medications for heartburn typically include antacids and acid blockers.

Heartburn Or Heart Attack

The symptoms of heartburn may mimic those of angina or a heart attack . If you’re uncertain, don’t hesitate to get to an emergency room for an evaluation as soon as possible.


  • Tightness, pressure, squeezing, stabbing, or dull pain, most often in the center of the chest

  • Pain that spreads to the shoulders, neck, or arms

  • Irregular or rapid heartbeat

  • Cold sweat or clammy skin

  • Lightheadedness, weakness, or dizziness

  • Nausea, indigestion, and sometimes vomiting

  • The appearance of symptoms with physical exertion or extreme stress


  • Burning chest pain that begins at the breastbone

  • Pain that moves up toward your throat but doesn’t typically radiate to your shoulders, neck, or arms

  • Sensation that food is coming back into your mouth

  • Bitter or acidic taste at the back of your throat

  • Pain that worsens when you lie down or bend over

  • The appearance of symptoms after a large or spicy meal

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What Happens When You Have Heartburn

While its name suggests otherwise, heartburn has no impact on;your heart.

Heartburn, or acid indigestion, happens when your stomach acid flows back into your esophagus. It causes an uncomfortable burning feeling or pain in your chest that can move up to your neck and throat.

The esophagus is located close to the heart, so its often difficult for people to distinguish where the pain is coming from, Dr. Abdallah says.

This is why its important for a doctor to rule out a heart attack if over-the-counter antacids dont work or if you experience the less pronounced symptoms, he says.

If left untreated, heartburn can cause more serious problems such as inflammation and narrowing of the esophagus, respiratory problems,;chronic cough or even cancer.

The good news: Several types of over-the-counter medicines are available to treat heartburn.

Do You Have Any Risk Factors For A Heart Attack

How to Naturally Cure Heartburn and GERD without Medication

If you do, a heart attack may be more likely. These factors include high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, obesity, smoking and a family history of heart disease. Also, heart disease is more common in men over 45 and in women over 55. Emotional stress can be a trigger of heart attack in women.

The bottom line is this: If you think you may be having a heart attack, call 911. If youre thinking about it enough, that should answer the question, says , cardiologist in Teaneck, New Jersey, adding that doctors would much rather see you and diagnose you with heartburn than have you die of a heart attack at home.

One more important tip to keep in mind: Dont ever try to drive yourself to the hospital. Call 911. While the ambulance is en route, they can get your EKG, send it to the hospital and have everyone ready to treat you the minute you reach the emergency room, Dr. Singh says.

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How Can My Doctor Tell If I Have Heartburn Or Acid Reflux

A medical doctor can often diagnose GERD and heartburn by your description of the symptoms your experience.

You may see a gastroenterologist, a medical specialist in disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, who may order an upper GI series. This is a series of X-rays of the esophagus, stomach, and upper part of the intestine often used to rule out other health conditions. An upper GI endoscopy, where a flexible probe with a tiny camera at the end is passed down your throat to see the esophagus. This helps diagnose how severe your acid reflux is, and can also rule out other health complications.

If your symptoms are not clearly from acid reflux, your doctor may perform other tests to rule out important conditions like heart attack, ulcers, lung problems, esophagus problems, and gastritis.

Got Heartburn How To Know If It S Acid Reflux Or A Hiatal Hernia

Got Heartburn How To Know If It S Acid Reflux Or A Hiatal Hernia

If your symptoms are burping, nausea, or a sense of fullness or tightness at the top of the stomach, this could indicate a hiatal hernia or a problem with your gallbladder. having these symptoms does not mean you should take an acid blocker , which masks the symptoms but does nothing to correct the root cause. Got heartburn how to know if it s acid reflux or a hiatal hernia. by dubaikhalifas on sep 28, 2021. share. How can you tell acid reflux and heartburn apart? the explanation is relatively simple. acid reflux occurs when acid secretion from the stomach comes up into the esophagus. heartburn is one of the symptoms of reflux. and its a common one: about one in five people in the u.s. will experience heartburn at some point. 1. Heartburn, angina and heart attack may feel very much alike. even experienced doctors can’t always tell the difference from your medical history and a physical exam. that’s why, if you go to the emergency room because of chest pain, you’ll immediately have tests to rule out a heart attack. Acid reflux and gastroesophageal reflux disease are closely related, but the terms don’t necessarily mean the same thing. acid reflux, also known as gastroesophageal reflux , is the backward flow of stomach acid into the tube that connects your throat to your stomach .

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Acid Reflux Or Hiatal Hernia? | Dr Gary Alexander | Top10md

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How To Know If You Have Heartburn With Pictures

Estimated Reading Time: 7 minsHeartburn typically occurs when contents from the stomach back up into the esophagus, The esophagus can beEstimated Reading Time: 40 secs1 You Have Severe Chest Pain Heartburn that comes with chest pain, shortness of breath, or throat, or salty taste in the back of the throatPeople suffering from heartburn may experience: Burning chest pain that starts at the breastbone Pain that moves upward through the throat, weakness, Pain in your chest when you bend over or lay down, you may also feel symptoms like: A burning feeling in your chest that can last anywhere from a few minutes to a couple of hours, A hot, or face may not be heartburn, which happens when not enough blood flows to your heart, often brought on by exertion, but sometimes additional testing may be necessary, heart attack Harvard Health

www.health.harvard.edu Chest Pain and GERD: Assess Your Symptom www.healthline.com

Symptoms Of A Heart Attack In Women

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Women are more likely than men to have unusual symptoms of aheart attack, including nausea. Some women think they have the flubecause of symptoms such as shortness of breath and fatigue.

There are a number of reasons why women report differentsymptoms than men. One reason is that many women think they are notat risk for a heart attack. Another reason is that women experiencepain differently than men.

Many women around the world suffer from heart attacks every day.If you have a history of heart disease, a family history of thedisease or smoking, do not ignore any symptoms.

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How Doctors Diagnose A Heart Attack

Usually doctors use the following tests to diagnose a heartattack Cardiographs are used:

  • ECG: A simple diagnostic test that examines the heart’selectrical activity.
  • Blood test: After a heart attack, some Proteins in the bloodincrease. Blood tests can detect these proteins in the blood.
  • X-ray of the chest: Allows your doctor to check the size ofyour heart and blood vessels.
  • Test Stress : Evaluates your heart condition,respiration, and symptoms while using a treadmill. Isexamined.
  • Angiography: is performed by injecting a contrast agent intothe arteries and imaging is performed simultaneously with X-rays.Angiography is used to determine narrowing or blockage of bloodvessels.
  • CT scan and MRI: Both methods help diagnose heart problems anddetermine the extent of heart damage.
  • >

Simple Signs To Tell If It Is Acid Reflux Or Heart Pain

Chest pain can be a very scary, serious issue. If you are one of many Americans at risk for heart disease, it can be even more frightening. But sometimes chest pain isn’t heart related, it is a digestive issue. Heartburn, or it’s more serious cousin acid reflux, affects millions of people everyday. The symptoms of both heart problems and acid reflux are very similar, but the treatment is obviously very different. It’s easy to mistake one for the other because the esophagus is located behind the heart in the chest cavity.

Identifying the real problem when you have chest pain is very important. Here’s a few things to look out for. But remember, when in doubt see your health care provider.

1.Burning in the throat due to stomach acid. This is an extension of the heartburn pain caused by acid reflux. Pain caused by stomach acid regurgitating into the esophagus and mouth is due to acid reflux, not heart problems.

2.Chest pain that begins or increases with exercise is more likely due to a heart problem. Acid reflux symptoms don’t change with physical exertion. The heart experiences stress during physical exercise that can manifest potential problems within.

4.Numbness or tingling in the arm or arms can be a symptom of a heart attack, and is generally not a symptom of acid reflux. Obviously these symptoms are serious and should be treated immediately by a health care professional.

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When To See A Doctor For Heartburn

People who experience acid reflux should make an appointment to see a doctor if:

  • the condition persists for some time
  • food sticks in the throat
  • there is difficulty eating
  • there is blood in the stools
  • there is difficulty breathing or swallowing

Persistent exposure to the stomach acid can cause damage to the esophagus.

Emergency doctors will consider the symptoms, examine the patient, and carry out some tests.

When In Doubt Check It Out

Heartburn: Why It Happens and How to Prevent It

If youre not sure if its heartburn or your heart, seek medical attention right away. Its very easy to confuse the two issues so let a doctor rule out the most severe possibility. This is an especially important message for women.;

Women are more likely to call help for someone else but not themselves, Bauman said. In fact, 81 percent of women said they would call 911 for someone else showing signs of a heart attack but only 65 percent would call for themselves, according to a special report in Circulation.;;

She added: I always tell people if youre concerned and not sure if its your heart, its better to err on the side of checking it out and having someone tell you its not a heart attack.;

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How Do Acid Blockers Work To Treat Heartburn

Products like Pepcid AC® are called histamine H2 blockers, or acid blockers. Acid blockers reduce the production of stomach acid. They relieve heartburn, acid indigestion and sour stomach. Always follow the directions on the packaging or talk to your healthcare provider about how to take this medication. Acid blockers you can buy without a prescription include:

  • Pepcid AC®.
  • Tagamet HB®.

Take your acid blocker medicine regularly for as long as directed by your healthcare provider, even if you do not have any pain or if your symptoms get better.

Stronger acid blockers are prescription medications. These can be used to block stomach acid, treat stomach and duodenal ulcers, erosive esophagitis, and GERD. They work by reducing the production of stomach acid. Your healthcare provider will give you a specific prescription for this type of acid blocker.

The United States Food and Drug Administration recently reported elevated levels of a possible carcinogen, NDMA, in the drugs ranitidine and nizatidine . You should speak to your healthcare provider if you are taking one these medications.

Is It Gas Pain Or A Heart Problem

Its perfectly normal to pass gas between 10 and 20 times a day. At the same time, its understandable to be worried if you feel chest pain after eating a meal. After all, if its gas, arent you supposed to feel it in your gut, not near your heart?

While you may be simply feeling the sensation of gas pain in your chest, this pain could also indicate a serious heart issue. Learn how to determine if you or a loved one needs to seek medical attention.

Please note, if you are still unsure if you are experiencing gas pain or a heart problem after reading this article, play it safe and go to the nearest emergency room to receive care.

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