Medicines For Indigestion And Heartburn
Medicines for indigestion and heartburn during pregnancy include:
- antacids to neutralise the acid in your stomach
- alginates to relieve indigestion caused by acid reflux by stopping the acid in your stomach coming back up your gullet
You may only need to take antacids and alginates when you start getting symptoms. However, your GP may recommend taking them before symptoms come on for example, before a meal or before bed.
If you’re taking iron supplements as well as antacids, do not take them at the same time. Antacids can stop iron from being absorbed by your body.
If antacids and alginates do not improve your symptoms, your GP may prescribe a medicine to reduce the amount of acid in your stomach. 2 that are widely used in pregnancy and not known to be harmful to an unborn baby are:
When Will It End
Heartburn symptoms are usually mild and manageable. Tell your healthcare provider if your heartburn is severe, if you spit up blood, or have dark-colored bowel movements. This is a sign of blood in your digestive tract. Fortunately, heartburn usually ends with the birth of your baby and your body goes back to its nonpregnant state.
Quit Smoking And Alcohol
As well as potentially causing harm to your baby, smoking and drinking during pregnancy can aggravate heartburn.
“Doctors advise that you give up both of these substances during pregnancy. For support in giving up, speak to your midwife or doctor,” she says.
How to deal with heartburn in pregnancy
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Natural Remedies For Pregnancy Heartburn
Diet and lifestyle modifications are the primarytreatments for GERD during pregnancy. Try the following steps to manage acid reflux during pregnancy:
Medications To Treat Gerd During Pregnancy
Beyond the dietary and lifestyle measures listed above, safe antacids are the next step in treating GERD during pregnancy. The first-line medications that are safe to use during pregnancy include:
Dr. Ross explains that these medications help coat the esophagus, minimizing the burning sensation. They also help neutralize stomach acid. These medications should be taken 30 minutes before each meal and before bedtime for optimal results, or they can simply be taken on an as-needed basis.
If you find that you are taking large and frequent doses of the above medications to treat your GERD symptoms, you may need an acid reducing medication, such as the following treatments are also safe during pregnancy:
- Zantac *Though ranitidine was previously recalled, Zantac is back on the market with the same active ingredient as Pepcid.
These are considered second-line medications. Antacids work more quickly and are less expensive. Many women with mild symptoms wont need to try Pepcid or Tagamet.
According to Dr. Garza, it is best to avoid sodium bicarbonate or aspirin containing antacids during pregnancy. For severe reflux cases requiring care beyond the safer medications listed above, it is best to talk with your healthcare professional. He or she may prescribe proton pump inhibitors if the medications above dont work. These popular medications, like Prilosec and Nexium , are also generally considered to be safe during pregnancy.
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How To Stop Heartburn And Indigestion
Try the following as your first port of call.
- Avoid large meals and eat smaller ones more often about every three hours.
- No midnight feasts. Dont eat late at night or three hours before bedtime.
- Avoid triggers like fatty and spicy foods, chocolate, caffeine and fizzy drinks or fruit juice. Keep a food diary to identify triggers
- Raise the head of your bed by 10 cm to 15 cm, or sleep propped up on lots of pillows.
- Avoid medication that may cause or worsen symptoms, if appropriate. Discuss it with your doctor before stopping any prescribed medications
- Stop smoking.
Feeling The Burn Tips To Manage Heartburn Gerd In Pregnancy
Heartburn is common in adults especiallyduring pregnancy. While some research suggests women who have moderateheartburn during pregnancy give birth to babies with fullerheads of hair, having symptoms more than twice a week might be asign of gastroesophageal reflux disease , or recurrent heartburn.
According to a study of 510 pregnant women, approximately 26% have GERD symptomsduring the first trimester. The rate jumps to 36% in the second trimester and51% during the third trimester. Thats substantial compared with the 20% of adults in the U.S. who experienceheartburn.
Why the increase in symptoms during pregnancy? Progesterone, a hormone that increases early in pregnancy, relaxessmooth muscle in the body. It helps your uterus stretch to accommodate thegrowing fetus, but also reduces the reliability of the esophageal sphincter aring-like structure that seals off stomach contents from the throat.
Increased pressure placed on the stomachexternally from the growing uterus, especially in the third trimester, can alsoworsen heartburn symptoms such as:
- Burning pain in the center of thechest, especially after eating
- Sour or bitter taste in the mouth
- Sore throat or cough
Thankfully, thereare several pregnancy-safe ways to deal with acute heartburn and ongoing casesof GERD.
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How Can I Deal With Heartburn During Pregnancy
I’m in my second trimester. No matter what I eat, I get heartburn. Is this normal? If so, what can I do to feel better? Cari
Heartburn, despite its name, has nothing to do with the heart. It’s a burning feeling in the throat and chest when the stomach’s contents move back up into the esophagus .
Heartburn is common during pregnancy. Pregnancy hormones can make the valve at the entrance to the stomach relax so that it doesn’t close as it should. This lets acidic stomach contents move up into the esophagus, a condition known as gastroesophageal reflux , or acid reflux. It can get worse later in pregnancy when the growing uterus presses up on the stomach.
To help ease heartburn pain:
- Skip foods and drinks that can make it worse, such as citrus spicy, fatty foods caffeine and carbonated drinks.
- Eat several small meals throughout the day.
- Take your time when eating.
- Drink liquids between not during meals.
- Avoid eating or drinking for 3 hours before bedtime.
- Resist the urge to lie down after meals.
- Raise your head when you sleep.
- Talk to your doctor about medicines that are safe to take for heartburn during pregnancy.
Or Inquire About Proton Pump Inhibitors
If other medications don’t help, there are also proton pump inhibitors , such as Prevacid. These have a more powerful acid-suppressing effect than H2 blockers, and most are available over the counter.
Although PPIs are, in general, safe for pregnant women, animal studies have raised concerns that omeprazole could harm a developing fetus, Dr. Richter says. “My recommendation to patients would be to avoid that one because there are about five or six out there on the market, with the H2 blockers,” he says. “All of them look to be safe during pregnancy.”
Be sure to discuss any medications with your doctor.
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When To See Your Doctor
If you are suffering from persistent heartburn that isnt relieved by any of the natural methods above, you may need to take medication. However, before taking any tablets during pregnancy, its advisable to speak to your midwife, GP or a pharmacist for advice. Whilst the right antacid may ease symptoms, some may interfere with the absorption of certain nutrients such as iron, or interact with other medications.
Doctors also recommend avoiding antacids that contain magnesium during the third trimester of pregnancy, as this mineral may interfere with contractions.
- Spicy, fatty, rich, and fried foods
- Fizzy drinks
- Large quantities of meat in one sittingthe body works harder if overloaded or too rich
Again, adding and subtracting certain foods and behaviors daily will help build a more balanced foundation for your wellness.
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Causes Of Heartburn In Pregnancy
Heartburn is commonly caused by eating spicy foods, which can irritate the stomach or esophagus or slow the rate of digestion. This can be true during pregnancy, too, but many of the causes of heartburn in pregnancy are simply natural parts of pregnancy, such as:
Experts believe that heartburn in pregnancy is caused by hormonal changes. Pregnant people have high levels of the hormone progesterone which causes muscles in the body to relax. One of these muscles is the lower esophageal sphincter, which seals the stomach off from the esophagus, the long tube connecting the throat with the stomach.
Usually when we swallow our food, the lower esophageal sphincter opens up to allow food to enter our stomachs, but the rest of the time, it’s squeezed shut. Because of the increased levels of hormones in pregnant people, the muscle relaxes, allowing stomach acids and partially digested food to move backward into the esophagus. The esophagus lining is more sensitive than stomach lining which is why it feels like it’s burning.
Hormonal changes also cause the digestive system to slow down, so the food moves more slowly through the body and stays in the stomach longer.
As the baby grows, especially during the third trimester, the uterus pushes on the abdomen, adding pressure or blocking parts of the digestive tract. This sometimes pushes stomach acid up into the esophagus. It also adds to the slowing down of the digestive system.
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Why Do Pregnant Women Get Heartburn
Pregnant women are more likely to get heartburn for a number of reasons.
First, during pregnancy, the hormone progesterone is secreted in higher amounts to support the pregnancy. Progesterone causes the valve that separates the food pipe from the stomach to relax, causing heartburn.
In addition, the growing uterus starts to put pressure on the stomach and other internal organs in later pregnancy. That pressure can also push food and stomach acid back into the food pipe.
Indigestion and heartburn are more likely in women who had heartburn before pregnancy and in those who have been pregnant before.
What Causes Heartburn During Pregnancy
During normal digestion, food travels down the esophagus , through a muscular valve called the lower esophageal sphincter , and into the stomach.
The LES is part of the doorway between your esophagus and your stomach. It opens to allow food through and closes to stop stomach acids from coming back up.
When you have heartburn, or acid reflux, the LES relaxes enough to allow stomach acid to rise up into the esophagus. This can cause pain and burning in the chest area.
During pregnancy, hormone changes can allow the muscles in the esophagus, including the LES, to relax more frequently. The result is that more acids may seep back up, particularly when youre lying down or after youve eaten a large meal.
In addition, as your fetus grows during the second and third trimesters and your uterus expands to accommodate that growth, your stomach is under more pressure. This can also result in food and acid being pushed back up into your esophagus.
Heartburn is a common occurrence for most people at one time or another, but it doesnt necessarily mean youre pregnant. However, if you also experience other symptoms, such as a missed period or nausea, these could be signs that you need to take a pregnancy test.
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Appendix G Economic Evidence Study Selection
Economic evidence study selection for review question: What interventions are effective in treating heartburn during pregnancy?
A single economic search was undertaken for all topics included in the scope of this guideline. No economic studies were identified which were applicable to this review question. See for details.
Talk To Your Doctor About Heartburn Medications
This includes over-the-counter ones some are safe to take during pregnancy.
Antacids help neutralize the acid in your stomach and quell that burning sensation. The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health says OTC antacids containing calcium carbonate are safe to use.
If you havent been able to quiet your heartburn with lifestyle changes, your doctor may suggest heartburn drugs like Tagamet and Prilosec, which are generally considered safe during pregnancy. While these drugs are available OTC, you might receive a prescription for a stronger dose if your doctor thinks its warranted.
When youre pregnant, you have to think about the safety of everything you put into and on your body. Some heartburn medications that might be OK for your nonpregnant sister but not for you include:
- Antacids containing sodium bicarbonate, which can increase swelling.
- Antacids containing aspirin, which can be toxic to your baby. Aspirin use during pregnancy has been associated with pregnancy loss, heart defects, and bleeding on the brain in premature infants.
- Antacids containing magnesium trisilicate, which havent been proven safe to use in pregnancy.
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How To Prevent Heartburn In Pregnancy
For most women, heartburn starts in pregnancy. And, there are plenty of ways on how you can avoid or prevent experiencing heartburn when pregnant. Importantly, you should focus more on how and what you eat. Consider practicing these few tips
- Eat smaller amounts of meals throughout the day
- Stay hydrated always – avoid drinking lots of water at the same time.
- Avoid eating a few hours before sleeping
- Always stay/sit upright after eating – lying down usually exerts pressure on the stomach forcing the stomach contents back up
- Use a pillow when sleeping
- Avoid eating cold foods
While heartburn shouldn’t get you worried a lot if you experience sudden heartburn or the heartburn persists, or severe symptoms, then it can be as a result of a serious problem, and therefore you should seek immediate health care attention.
Otherwise, if you are confident that there is no underlying problem causing your heartburn, now you know what to drink for heartburn during pregnancy. In most cases, the heartburn is said to disappear after childbirth.
Heartburn During Pregnancy: What To Do
Pregnant women commonly develop heartburn, a disorder that involves a burning feeling in the chest.
Up to 50 percent of women experience heartburn at some point during pregnancy. Although it can happen at any point during pregnancy, heartburn tends to occur more frequently in the third trimester.
Find out more in this article about heartburn during pregnancy, how to treat and prevent it, and how to tell if its time to see the doctor.
Contents of this article:
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Indigestion And Heartburn In Pregnancy
Indigestion, also called heartburn or acid reflux, is common in pregnancy. It can be caused by hormonal changes and the growing baby pressing against your stomach.
You can help ease indigestion and heartburn by making changes to your diet and lifestyle, and there are medicines that are safe to take in pregnancy.
What Remedies Can Be Used
In most cases, heartburn improves with changes in diet and lifestyle, but if there is constant and severe heartburn, the doctor may prescribe tablets with magnesium or calcium, or even some over-the-counter antacids. However, it is important to remember that any medication or supplements should only be taken under doctors supervision to make sure it is safe for the babys development.
There are also some foods that relieve heartburn, such as raw, peeled potato or apple with the peel, a slice of bread, or a cream cracker as they help to push gastric content back into the stomach and thus stop heartburn.
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Food And Drinks To Relieve Symptoms
- Ginger: cut up some pieces of ginger and make a tea of it. It is that simple. Also great if you are nauseous.
- Banana: easily digestible and also helps against heartburn. Do I hear banana pancakes?
- Fibers: think of wholemeal bread, oatmeal, and brown rice, but also of vegetables and fruit. Make tasty fruit salads for yourself. Or look at your partner…
- Dairy: a glass of milk can work wonders. Or vanilla custard. But opinions differ on this too.
When To Call The Doctor
If heartburn symptoms are associated withheadaches or swelling of the hands and face, talk with your provider beforetrying these remedies, especially if the symptoms are new and present in thelast trimester of pregnancy.
Heartburn-like paincan be a symptom of preeclampsia, or dangerously high bloodpressure during pregnancy. Preeclampsia puts mothers and babies at risk, andfurther evaluation may be necessary.
As mentioned,heartburn is very common in pregnancy. If your symptoms dont resolve with dietchanges or medication, let your provider know so you can find an effectivetreatment.
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