Eat Bananas To Get Rid Of Heartburn
Bananas can be categorized as natural antacids as they lessen the effect of your acid reflux. This is enough a reason to have the tasty banana for getting relief from heartburn. High on potassium which is an alkalizing mineral with a pH of 14, banana helps in moderating the acidity of your stomach by increasing its pH. Higher the pH, lower is the acidity. However, you need to eat a ripe, preferably overripe banana because the bananas that are green or are not overripe contain potassium in the form of potassium nitrate and this can actually make your heartburn more painful. Potassium is not the only reason for bananas being such a good remedy for heartburn. Bananas also have such a chemical that stimulates your stomach lining and thus it produces more mucus to act as a buffer against acid.
- Overripe banana
- This will keep your heartburn away.
How Are Gerd And Sleep Related
GERD is often cited as a cause of sleeping problems, including in the National Sleep Foundations 2001 Sleep in America Poll. In a more recent survey of people with frequent heartburn, nearly 60% said it affected their sleep, and more than 30% said it hurt their daytime functioning.
Flare ups of GERD symptoms after lying down can make it hard to fall asleep and can cause nighttime interruptions from heartburn, chest pain, and coughing. Studies in sleep clinics of people with GERD have found that these symptoms are correlated with lower sleep quality.
What Is The Best Sleeping Position For Acid Reflux Sleeping With Gerd
Do you experience burning in your throat, regurgitation, choking, coughing, or heartburn during sleep? All of these may disturb your sleep throughout the night. But what could be the cause? Short answer: Stomach acid, when it escapes out of your stomach to the esophagus and sometimes even up into your lungs, throat, and sinuses.
People with acid reflux, or gastroesophageal reflux disease , usually experience these symptoms at night. If youre one of them, know that youre not alone. Its more common than you may expect. GERD affects up to 13% of the global population at least once a week. And, 25% of people with GERD experience poor sleep, which could be from nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux , a type of GERD, with the other being upright or daytime GERD.
Supine or nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux usually occurs when acid moves back up to a persons esophagus while lying down and mostly happens at night before or during sleep. This condition may cause sleep issues and prevent a person from getting a good nights rest.
Lets take a look into the sleep positions that may reduce your GERD symptoms and help you get a better nights sleep, as well as the sleep positions to avoid because they may aggravate your symptoms at night.
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Additional Tips To Control Acid Reflux At Night
You can also make some lifestyle changes that may help you manage the occurrence of acid reflux at night and promote a well-rested night.
Some of these lifestyle recommendations include:
A doctor may also prescribe medications or recommend surgery to treat GERD when appropriate. Talk with your doctor about your symptoms so they can prescribe treatment or lifestyle recommendations to manage your condition and improve your sleep health.
If you have GERD, youre not sentenced to a lifetime of sleepless nights from acid reflux at night. By making simple tweaks to your sleeping positionchoosing the Incline + Left-Side sleepingyou can take control of your symptoms and get the recovery sleep everyone deserves.
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Make Ginger Tea To Relieve Heartburn
If you want to get rid of nausea accompanying your heartburn, just make a cup of fresh ginger root tea that will soothe your stomach and give you the much-wanted comfort. If nausea and heartburn become a regular feature of your life, you may also consider having a cup of fresh ginger tea before your meals. This helps your stomach in settling down as ginger acts as an acid buffer.
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Make Lunch Your Biggest Meal Of The Day
Eating a big meal can put pressure on your stomach and allow acid to travel back up into your esophagusand that will only be compounded if you lie down soon afterward. To prevent a major case of acid reflux at night, Huber recommends eating a heavier lunch and a lighter dinner. I’ve started to spend a few hours on Sunday meal prep so that I can get more substantial lunches ready for the week.
Different Stages Of Sleep
A sleep cycle goes through stages that consist of two basic states: non-rapid eye movement and rapid eye movement sleep. Each stage of the cycle is vital to getting a good nights rest.
- Stage 1: This is a brief stage a sleep between being awake and fully asleep. This stage is characterized by slowed muscle activity.
- Stage 2: The second stage of sleep is when the body temperature drops, brain waves become slower, and the breathing and heart rate stay regular.
- Stage 34: The most restorative sleep occurs during these stages. The breathing slows down, the blood pressure drops, and activity stops in the muscles. Energy is restored and repair to tissue occurs. Hormones for growth and development are also released in this stage.
- Stage 5: The only stage of REM sleep is stage 5. Breathing becomes rapid and irregular. The heart rate increases and the blood pressure rises. This stage gives energy to the body and the brain as the muscles are even more relaxed. It is in this stage that dreams occur. Studies also suggest that REM sleep stimulates the part of the brain used for learning and memory.
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What Helps Heartburn Fast At Night
These tips can quickly help relieve nighttime heartburn.
22. Prop yourself up in bed
Keeping yourself upright in bed can help take some pressure off your stomach and valve and relieve symptoms.
23. Try baking soda and water
Baking soda can help neutralize acid. Try drinking a half teaspoon of baking soda dissolved in 4 ounces of warm water.
24. Take antacids
You can buy antacids from your pharmacy. These work by changing your stomach acid that causes heartburn.
25. Try over-the-counter histamine-2 blockers
Histamine-2 blockers help heartburn by changing how much acid your stomach makes. These can relieve symptoms for a few hours.
26. Try OTC proton pump inhibitors
You can try these medications from your pharmacy if nothing else is working. These should only be taken for 14 days at a time and only 3 times a year.
27. Take prescription medications
If nothing helps your heartburn, talk to your doctor. They can give you stronger prescription medications.
Sometimes surgery on your esophagus sphincter can help heartburn that doesnt get better with treatment. Talk to your doctor about ongoing heartburn.
How To Treat Nighttime Heartburn Symptoms
For nighttime heartburn relief, elevate your head and chest upright in bed, lie on your left side, or try standing up. Raising your upper body can naturally help the stomach acid move down the digestive system and reduce heartburn symptoms.
If occasional heartburn symptoms persist, they can be treated with over the counter medications, such as PEPCID®. PEPCID® is a Histamine-2 blocker, with the active ingredient famotidine, which can help relieve heartburn by reducing the amount of acid in the stomach. It works fast and will help to control acid all night*. If you do not have OTC heartburn medications readily available, learn more about easy ways to manage with at-home heartburn remedies.
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Keep Heartburn Under Control All Day
One of the most important things you can do to ease nighttime heartburn is to be smarter all day. “For example, make sure you are taking anti-reflux medications correctly,” Gabbard says. “Many medications for GERD are best taken before meals and not before bedtime.” It’s also always a good idea to avoid foods that trigger your heartburn, which are often acidic foods, such as tomatoes and citrus fruits, as well as spicy foods.
How Can I Prevent Heartburn During Pregnancy
They say prevention is the best medicine, so knowing common heartburn triggers can help you keep the acid at bay.
Of course, pregnancy itself is a major trigger for heartburn. As your growing uterus puts pressure on your stomach, this pushes stomach acid up your throat.
Those lovely hormones are no help either. They tend to relax the valve between your stomach and esophagus, which makes it easier for acid to make its way upward.
While theres nothing you can do to stop this entirely, there are a few things that can help prevent heartburn from flaring up during pregnancy:
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Exercises Triggering Nighttime Heartburn
Specific types of physical exercises may cause the problem of heartburn at night. Specific body positions or postures involving sit-ups or bending over may increase pressure on ones abdomen and thrusts the stomach acids back in the oesophagus. This makes you to get burning feelings. In addition, sometimes, leg lifts affect ones abdominal muscles and aggravate symptoms related to heartburn, particularly during nighttime.
Along with this, activities related to headstands and specific moves in Yoga may reverse the natural digestion flow and activates the problem of heartburn, while aerobics and jogging, along with similar other types of jarring exercises may slosh the contents present upwards and around the stomach in case you deal with the problem of weak LES.
Bed Risers For Elevation Therapy
Bed risers are available for raising the head of your bed but I no longer recommend them.
Placing these blocks under the head of your bed isnt particularly safe and they dont work for all bed frames. The elevation therapy solutions I previously mentioned are much better options.
If you try bed risers, do so as a temporary measure.
Avoid Certain Types Of Foods For Dinner
Some foods can make sleep difficult by causing heartburn, indigestion, or gas. Anything high in fat, spicy foods, and dishes with beans shouldn’t be consumed close to your bedtime, says Reed, since they can cause these kinds of discomfort in the abdomen and chest.
If heartburn hits, TUMS Chewy Bites with Gas Relief can bring you fast relief by neutralizing acid on contact and relieving gas and related symptoms. Use as directed to relieve the heartburn that is keeping you from getting sleep.
Gerd And Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Research has also identified a link between GERD and obstructive sleep apnea , a sleep disorder that involves blockage of the airway that incites pauses in breathing during sleep. Debate exists among experts about whether GERD causes OSA, OSA causes GERD, or if they simply share similar risk factors.
It is possible that GERD affects the airway and ability to breathe normally, causing more apneas during the night. At the same time, people with OSA wake up frequently at night and may then detect GERD symptoms. Lack of sleep from OSA may make the esophagus more susceptible to reflux.
In addition, factors like alcohol consumption, smoking, and obesity can increase risk for both GERD and OSA, so the correlation between the conditions may be a result of these factors.
While the exact relationship between GERD and OSA is subject to further research, it is clear that the conditions can occur together and create significant complications for a persons sleep, comfort, and overall health.
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Why Does Your Heartburn Get Worse At Night
One word answer Gravity. Gravity keeps gastric acid in the stomach while youre standing or sitting. But when you are lying down, it is easier for gastric acid and other stomach contents to rise back up the esophagus, causing heartburn.
Additionally, while we are sleeping, the mouth produces less saliva and rate of swallowing also goes down. This, in turn, hinders with esophageal pH levels to return back to normal after the acid has traveled back up the esophagus. The result you wake up choking and coughing with a sore throat.
Research has shown that night time heartburn occurs in a large majority of adults with GERD, resulting in sleeping difficulties and impaired next-day function. Its important to understand that GERD and sleep have a bi-directional relationship. Acid Reflux adversely affects sleep quality by waking you up at night. At the same time, sleep deprivation can adversely affect heartburn severity by enhancing the perception of acid in the esophagus causing esophageal hypersensitivity, and potentially by increasing esophageal acid exposure time. If you have acid reflux, lack of sleep puts your body into stress, which increases the discomfort associated with increased acidity.
So, what can be done to prevent heartburn from keeping you up at night?
Marshmallow Can Heal Heartburn
The very popular herb marshmallow contains a mucilage property that helps coat your esophagus and stomach lining. This creates a protective barrier against stomach acid and you get rid of heartburn. What more, marshmallow can even repair the damage done to your food pipe and stomach lining by excessive acid.Make Marshmallow Infusion for Heartburn
- In the morning, drink this thick herbal infusion which would taste bitter-sweet.
Precaution: If you are taking some medication, consult your doctor before using any herb.
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Sleeping Positions For Natural Heartburn Relief
Many people dont realize that how you sleep directly affects how you reflux at the night as anatomy and gravity play a big role in heartburn symptom frequency, length and severity.
First, a quick anatomy lesson. What you eat travels down your esophagus through your lower esophageal sphincter and into your stomach where digestion begins.
Your LES is essentially a ring of muscles that act as a valve to control the flow of contents between your esophagus and your stomach and vice versa. If your LES functions correctly, what you eat will stay in your stomach with the occasional release of gas, also known as a burp.
Problems arise when your LES doesnt function properly allowing your stomach contents to escape back up into your esophagus. Commonly referred to as acid reflux, the acidic nature of what comes back up can cause damage to the delicate lining of your esophagus leading to serious health complications, such as erosive esophagitis, peptic stricture, esophageal ulcerations, Barretts esophagus, and adenocarcinoma of the esophagus.1
If reflux occurs when you are standing up, gravity and saliva quickly return the acidic content to your stomach. This quick return typically makes your symptoms shorter, as well as minimizes the potential acid damage to the delicate lining of your esophagus from acid exposure.
Figure 1: Representation of stomach when upright.
Sleep Tips For Heartburn
Most people have their worst heartburn at night. That’s because heartburn has a lot to do with gravity. When you’re in bed and lying down, gravity isn’t working in your favor.
Here’s how the problem starts. When you swallow foods and drinks, they flow through your esophagus down to your stomach. Think of the point where the esophagus and stomach meet as a gate made of a circular ring of muscle. This is the lower esophageal sphincter . It opens to let food and drink pass through. As soon as they do, the gate closes.
Gastric juices made in your stomach to digest food are meant to stay there. If they escape back through the LES gate, they irritate the esophagus. You then experience heartburn.
The reason heartburn is worse at night is that the LES has to work against gravity. When you are lying flat, especially if you have food in your stomach, all those gastric juices are knocking at the gate.
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If You Must Snack Choose A Balanced Carb
You cant just gorge on #allthecarbs after dark. But Reed says a small, higher carbohydrate snack may be beneficial in the hour or two before bedtime, as carbs can help the brain access tryptophan an amino acid that causes sleepiness faster. Carbs arent created equally though. Look for a complex whole grain, which Reed says can help increase serotonin levels in the body. Simple, sugary carbs, on the other hand, can cause a burst in your energy levels, which can keep you awake.
Tip #: Elevate Your Head While You Sleep
As we mentioned, lying down can make acid reflux and heartburn worse, so try propping your head up with a pillow while you sleep to make it harder for stomach acid to travel up.
Heartburn and sleep dont have to go hand in hand. Try making some lifestyle and diet changes to ensure you get the good nights sleep you need. If you continue to experience chronic acid reflux and nighttime heartburn, you can schedule an appointment to see a heartburn specialist at Tampa Bay Reflux Center, who can determine whether or not you have gastroesophageal reflux disease , which is a chronic form of acid reflux.
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Dangers Of Acid Reflux At Night
Not only is there a greater risk of acid reflux at night but the extended exposure to refluxed acid causes a greater risk of tissue damage.
The stomach has a special lining that protects against the corrosive effects of stomach acid but the esophagus lacks the same protection. Horrible complications can occur when the lining of tissues outside the stomach are damaged by refluxed acid.
Repeat exposure to stomach acid can cause ulcers, scarring, esophageal strictures, and in more severe cases Barretts Esophagus, which is a precancerous condition, and even esophageal cancer.3