How Do I Treat Heartburn During Pregnancy
When youre growing a human being, you dont have time for that yucky acid reflux. But your usual go-to methods for treating it may not be safe for your unborn baby.
Instead, here are some of the safest and best ways to get rid of heartburn when youre pregnant:
Suffering From Pregnancy Heartburn 5 Top Tips To Relieve Heartburn During Pregnancy
If you are having pregnancy heartburn, you are definitely not alone! In fact, pregnancy heartburn affects 8/10 women at some point during their 9 months and – as you probably know by now – can be pretty unpleasant. Its been found that around 1/4 of women experience heartburn during pregnancy in their first trimester, 1/3 of women in their second trimester and 3/4 of women in their third trimester. So, whilst some things get better as your pregnancy progresses, pregnancy heartburn, although harmless is unfortunately, likely to get worse.
Thankfully there are some solutions and pregnancy heartburn remedies that have been tried and tested. To help you find pregnancy heartburn relief and put your mind at ease, weve put together a brief insight into what pregnancy heartburn actually is and some of the best ways to manage it.
What is pregnancy heartburn?
All heartburn, including heartburn during pregnancy, is caused by acid reflux: Acid from your stomach rises up through your food pipe , irritating it. This happens when a small muscle, located where the food pipe meets the stomach, is weak or too relaxed. Its job is to let food into the stomach and to stop food and acids from coming back out, but if it is weak, the stomachs contents are able to flow upwards. It can leave you with pain or a burning feeling in your chest and/or throat. It can also cause a hoarse voice, sickness, bloating, an unpleasant taste in your mouth and bad breath not fun!
How To Lower Your Risk Of Heartburn During Pregnancy
For some women, diet and lifestyle changes during pregnancy can lessen the likelihood of heartburn. Suggestions from OB/GYNs include: monitoring overall food consumption, eating smaller meals throughout the day, and reducing caffeine intake.2 Avoid eating or drinking too close to bedtime and stay away from spicy and fatty foods to lower your risk of occasional heartburn after dinner and at night.2 As far as specific items are concerned, citrus fruits and chocolate have been linked to trigger heartburn during pregnancy.6
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Foods To Avoid During Early Pregnancy
You may experience heartburn for the first time during pregnancy or find it becoming worse. In fact, it’s fairly common to experience heartburn during pregnancy, with it being reported by 17 45% of pregnant women5. Keep eating foods that are good for you and investigate these food heartburn triggers to help reduce the risk as much as possible. A few food triggers to consider include:
For more information on how changes during pregnancy can affect your eating habits and the occurrence of heartburn, be sure to check out the TUMS site for more information.
Does Pregnancy Cause Heartburn
Pregnancy increases your risk of heartburn or acid reflux. During the first trimester, muscles in your esophagus push food more slowly into the stomach and your stomach takes longer to empty.
This gives your body more time to absorb nutrients for the fetus, but it can also result in heartburn.
During the third trimester, the growth of your baby can push your stomach out of its normal position, which can lead to heartburn.
However, each woman is different. Being pregnant doesnt necessarily mean youll have heartburn. It depends on many factors, including your physiology, diet, daily habits, and your pregnancy.
Relieving heartburn during pregnancy typically involves some trial and error. Lifestyle habits that can reduce heartburn are often the safest methods for mother and baby. The following tips may help relieve your heartburn:
Heartburn And Indigestion In Pregnancy
Heartburn causes a burning feeling in the chest or throat. Its uncomfortable, but is not usually harmful to pregnant women or their babies.
8 out of 10 pregnant women experience heartburn. Youre most likely to get heartburn in the third trimester of your pregnancy.
The symptoms of heartburn include:
- a burning feeling in your chest or throat
- acid coming up into your mouth
- feeling sick
Baking Soda For Heartburn
Chances are good that you have baking soda in your kitchen and if you dont you should really be aware of all the fantastic uses for baking soda and keep it on hand all the time. It is brilliant for household cleaning, for beauty and for health remedies too.
Making use of baking soda for heartburn is fantastic because it is highly effective, you probably always have baking soda in your kitchen, it is a natural remedy and it is inexpensive.
To get rid of heartburn mix in half a teaspoon of baking soda in a cup of water. Make sure to stir it until the baking soda is completely dissolved. Drink it slowly. You can repeat it every 2 hours.
The key ingredient in baking soda that helps to relieve heartburn is sodium bicarbonate. The sodium bicarbonate quickly neutralizes the stomach acid which relieves the symptoms of heartburn temporarily.
It is important not to take more than 7 doses in a day and if you are over 60 years old keep that down to 3 doses daily.
Taking in too much baking soda can result in acid rebound where more acid is produced making your heartburn problem even worse.
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Foods To Eat During Your Pregnancy
With so many changes taking place in your body, making sure youre well-nourished during your pregnancy is vital. Now that youre eating and creating a new foundation for two, knowing what types of foods as well as vitamins and nutrients youre getting, will be important for your health and the health of your baby. Below we touch on what foods to eat during pregnancy as well as what foods to avoid early on in your pregnancy to ensure optimal overall health. After all, making good diet decisions is critical to your babys development.
Lets begin with the food groups. Knowing your food groups and trying to incorporate key nutrients into your diet based on each one can be an easy place to start.
When To See A Doctor
You should call your healthcare provider if you:
- Experience heartburn that doesnt go away
- Have heartburn that wakes you up at night
- Have trouble swallowing
- Have black poop
- Are losing weight
If you have chest pain but never had heartburn before, you should see your doctor or seek emergency medical attention right away. It could be a sign of a heart attack.
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Try Foods That May Help Relieve Heartburn
Some foods work wonders when it comes to relieving or even preventing heartburn. For the best results, try and add the following to your diet:
- bananas and melons: they represent highly alkaline fruits and are the best natural remedy for your problems
- ginger: ginger can work as an anti-inflammatory in your system and reduce reflux, as well as symptoms connected to nausea and vomiting
- yoghurt: yoghurt has a soothing effect that will calm down your heartburn and help with proper digestion
- green vegetables: green beans, spinach, asparagus, kale, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and celery are all highly alkaline foods, so theyre also good for your stomach and can prevent the production of stomach acid
- whole grains: whole wheat bread, oatmeal, brown rice and similar all treat as well as even prevent reflux, while oatmeal can actually absorb stomach and other types of acids.
A good piece of advice would be to keep a diet diary so you can track the foods that might be causing you problems, and detect those that alleviate your symptoms.
When To Get Medical Help
See your midwife or GP if you need help managing your symptoms or if changes to your diet and lifestyle do not work. They may recommend medicine to ease your symptoms.
You should also see your midwife or GP if you have any of the following:
- difficulty eating or keeping food down
- weight loss
- stomach pains
Your midwife or GP may ask about your symptoms and examine you by pressing gently on different areas of your chest and stomach to see whether it’s painful.
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Why Exactly Does Pregnancy Cause Heartburn
Heartburn during pregnancy will plague most moms-to-be at some point because progesterone, the hormone that relaxes muscles in pregnancy, also relaxes the stomach valve that keeps acid out of the esophagus. In addition, the growing uterus crowds the stomach, forcing acid into the esophagus.
But there are safe, effective ways to stop it. “Pregnant women really don’t need to suffer with heartburn anymore,” says Adrienne Einarson, RN, assistant director of clinical services at Motherisk, a Toronto-based program that investigates the effects of prenatal exposures on maternal and fetal health. Here, experts recommend 12 different ways to soothe heartburn during pregnancy.
Change Your Eating And Drinking Habits
You may be able to control your indigestion with changes to your eating habits.
It can help to eat small meals often, rather than larger meals 3 times a day, and to not eat within 3 hours of going to bed at night.
Cutting down on drinks containing caffeine, and foods that are rich, spicy or fatty, can also ease symptoms.
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Causes Of Heartburn While Pregnant
Sadly, it is very common to have this physical sensation while pregnant. And although morning sickness seems to have all the attention, lots of women look at heartburn as to an uncomfortable pregnancy sign.
During early stages of pregnancy, heartburn is the result of progesterone, one of the pregnancy symptoms that women experience at this point, which will relax the muscles of the uterus in order to fit the developing baby. It relaxes the valve between the valve between the gut and esophagus as well.
In the last pregnancy stages, the baby will squash the digestive organs and this may lead to heartburn. However, the great news is that this will not affect the little one.
Listen To What Your Body Is Telling You
What you can eat during pregnancy is largely dependent on how certain foods make you feel. In your first trimester, you likely had aversions and foods that induced nausea just by looking at them. Now, certain foods may trigger heartburn. Fat, caffeine, chocolate, and citrus fruits are all common foods that cause heartburn during pregnancy. Know your triggers and stay away from them.
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If Youre Expecting You May Also Experience Heartburn Discover What Doctors Have To Say About Heartburn And How To Get Relief Fast
Along with swollen feet, frequent urination, and unusual cravings, heartburn is an issue that affects women during pregnancy. Heartburn is defined as a burning sensation in the upper part of the digestive tract and throat.1
If you are suffering from heartburn while expecting, read on to learn what obstetricians and gynecologists recommend for relief. However, you should still discuss your heartburn condition with your own doctor for a solution thats right for you.
How To Get Rid Of Heartburn During Pregnancy Fast
You never know when or where heartburn may strike. Its a good idea to keep some emergency heartburn-relief remedies in your handbag in case youre caught off guard.
Keep a small stash of the following items on you at all times:
- A teabag of your favorite heartburn-relieving herbal tea
Calcium-containing antacids such as Tums or Rolaids .
During pregnancy, the stomach has prolonged gastric emptying times and the gastroesophageal sphincter has decreased tone. Together, these changes lead to reflux and possibly combine with decreased esophageal tone to cause ptyalism, or spitting, during pregnancy as well as reflux and heartburn.
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Was It Something I Ate
You expected the swollen ankles, the morning sickness, and the burgeoning breasts. But this burning indigestion? Whered that come from?
As the name implies, heartburn feels like a fiery churning that starts behind your breastbone and travels up your esophagus, a tube connecting your throat to your stomach. These acids can even make it all the way up your throat.
In addition to feeling a burning sensation which can last several minutes to several hours you may also:
- feel bloated
- have a sour taste in your mouth
- have a sore throat
- cough frequently
While the burrito you ate for dinner probably didnt help matters , the burning feeling you have has more to do with hormones than jalapenos.
45 percent of moms-to-be experience heartburn. And if you had heartburn before pregnancy, youre even more likely to have it during.
Heartburn can fire up, so to speak, at any point in pregnancy, but its most common during the second and third trimesters. Experts arent exactly sure what causes the smoldering, but they suspect its a three-pronged problem.
Treating Heartburn During Pregnancy
Check with your doctor before taking any OTC medications for heartburn. If you get the green light, make sure to follow both the doctors and the package directions and dont overuse.
Liquid antacids may provide greater relief than other kinds, since they coat the stomach. Talk to your doctor about which treatments are best for you.
The following home remedies may also help:
- Warm milk with honey may soothe your stomach and reduce heartburn symptoms.
- Resist the urge to lie down after eating and take a stroll, instead.
- When you do sleep, try using your pregnancy pillow underneath your body from the waist up. This elevates your upper body while providing cushioning.
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Quit Smoking And Alcohol
It goes without saying that smoking and alcohol are bad for the foetus for many different reasons. One of them is the increased likelihood of experiencing acid reflux in pregnancy, as drinking alcohol and inhaling the chemicals in smoke can contribute to indigestion. Both work towards relaxing the lower oesophageal valve, which lets the acid escape from your stomach and go up into your throat.
Why It Heartburn Happens
Heartburn is common in pregnancy due to the hormonal changes that happen during this period, as well as being caused by the baby’s development, which can cause stomach compression, which can make the contents of the stomach to go back up the esophagus towards the mouth, leading to heartburn symptoms.
In addition, heartburn during pregnancy can also be caused by your diet. Thus, it is recommend to avoid eating fatty foods, foods with caffeine, and avoid taking in liquids during meals. In some cases, the doctor may also recommend some type of medication, such as Dimethicone to help with digestion.
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If You’re Taking Prescription Medicines
Speak to your GP if you’re taking medicine for another condition, such as antidepressants, and you think it may be making your indigestion worse. They may be able to prescribe an alternative medicine.
Never stop taking a prescribed medicine unless you’re advised to do so by your GP or another qualified healthcare professional who’s responsible for your care.
How To Treat Pregnancy Heartburn Naturally
While you cant completely prevent heartburn during pregnancy, there are ways you can minimize how often it happens and reduce the severity when it strikes.
Below are seven tips from Wellenstein, Sridhar, and experts from the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
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