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What Is Acid Reflux?

Acid reflux, also known as heartburn, is a common condition whereby stomach acid flows back up the food pipe, causing a burning sensation in the lower chest area and back of the throat. The condition is usually down to a weak sphincter muscle which relaxes at the wrong time, allowing stomach acid back into your esophagus.

Causes of acid reflux

There are many different causes for acid reflux, including:

Diet

Foods that are low in fibre or have a high acidity level such as chocolate, salt and fruit juices are a big culprit when it comes to acid reflux. The higher the acidity of the foods you are eating, the higher the levels of acidity are going to be in your body.

Pregnancy

Acid Reflux during pregnancy can be caused by many factors,

  • Baby’s weight putting extra pressure on the internal organs
  • Hormonal changes
  • Muscles between the stomach and the gullet relaxing, causing stomach acid to come back up.

You may also be more at risk of acid reflux during pregnancy if you have been pregnant before, regularly suffer with acid reflux or if you are in the late stages of pregnancy.

How to relieve Acid Reflux

There are many ways in which you can relieve acid reflux or at least make it more manageable.

  • Keeping upright as much as possible – this can prevent stomach acid from travelling back up the food pipe, propping your head and upper body up with pillows when you sleep can prevent the feeling of heartburn and acidity.
  • Eating healthily – a full stomach is a high risk factor of getting heartburn or indigestion. by eating healthier, more alkaline foods, you can prevent high acidity levels.
  • avoid lying down for at least 3 hours after eating
  • try to eat smaller meals more frequently throughout the day
  • a good-quality antacid medicine such as tablets or liquid can help to relieve the sensation of heartburn.

To learn more about Acid Reflux, join Antony Haynes RNT as he presents our upcoming webinar:

References

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/146619

https://www.healthline.com/health/burning-throat#acid-reflux-or-gerd

https://www.healthline.com/health/gerd/preventing-heartburn#1

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