Depending on the severity, there is now a host of home remedies for heartburn. Heartburn affects nearly 90% of all people at some points in their lives. For some heartburn is simply a painful nuisance caused by eating foods which are spicy or simply don’t agree with them while for others, heartburn is a way of life that happens almost daily. Although the medicinal name itself points to it as being a condition of the heart, in reality heartburn has nothing to do with the heart. Instead, heartburn is caused when the esophagus is irritated or damaged, although symptoms of heartburn often mimic those of a heart attack.
When acidity increases and builds up within the stomach, which can happen when the muscular valve referred to as the LES does not open frequently enough or opens too much. This valves’ job is to open and close sporadically and allow food (and the acids within it) to pass to the stomach where it is digested and later omitted from the body via the bowels or urinal tract. When the LES does not work properly or there is an influx, the acids can build up within or make their way to the esophagus and cause the burning sensation we know as heartburn.
For those who only suffer occasional instances of heartburn, medical professionals will often prescribe a simple over the counter antacid that should be taken prior to eating meals. In cases where heartburn is more habitual, prescription medications such as H2 blockers are necessary, and in the most severe cases, surgical treatments may be necessary as chronic heartburn can cause a series of other health detriments. For those with mild cases, however, home remedies for heartburn can often do the trick.
Although only recommended for the mildest cases of heartburn or GERD, some research has found that by simply chewing a piece of gum after a meal can help decrease the chance of sustaining heartburn.
Our saliva is pivotal in the digestion process as it breaks down and helps to flush the contents of our stomachs. By chewing gum, we are increasing our saliva flow, and it is thought that this helps digestion increase and flushes foods from the stomach more quickly.
Baking soda has a lot of uses, from taking out stains in garments to whitening teeth. As it turns out, many medical professionals also recommend mixing a tablespoon of baking soda with an 8-ounce glass of water and drinking it after meals as baking soda helps to neutralize the acid in our stomachs. It is however not recommended to use this method too often (and not more than once per day) as ingesting large amounts of baking soda can cause nausea and excessive vomiting.
Licorice is a natural remedy for heartburn within the medical community because of its natural ability to heal the inner lining of the stomach when it comes across excess acids. It is usually recommended that licorice pills or tablets are taken instead of actually eating the licorice flavored candy as they have more natural acid fighting agents and because eating a lot of candy can cause other health diseases like diabetes. However, in a pinch, chomping on a piece of licorice candy could deter heartburn as well.
Another home remedy for heartburn is aloe, which is most commonly used for the treatment of burns and rashes but is also utilized to treat heartburn. The same components within the plant that soothe burns and painful irritation to the outer skins can also do the same for us internally.
Aloe has anti-inflammatory properties that can coat and sooth the esophagus from acidic foods. Drinking a mere half a cup of Aloe Vera juice before a meal will keep the esophagus from getting inflamed and irritated. It is best to try this at home a few times first, though, as the juice can cause diarrhea in many people.
Slippery Elm is another natural remedy for heartburn that has had much success in the treatment of heartburn. It is a natural plant that, and when components are extracted from it, it lines the stomach area with a thick mucus that will keep acids from penetrating the esophagus. This extra lining in the stomach will protect the area from getting inflamed. Usually, it is given as a mixture of water and two tablespoons of the herb and drank before meals or right before you retire for the evening.
Chamomile teas have natural antacids in them that will neutralize the acids ingested, as well as contributing to better sleep and possibly reducing stress. Drinking a cup before or after meals, and particularly right before bed can often reduce the risk of heartburn and help you to sleep better overall.
Turmeric is a spice that is typically used as a flavoring in meals, especially within the Indian cultures. The spice works wonders at stimulating our digestive tracts and speeds up the process in general, which means acidic foods have less time to build up within the stomach and wreak havoc on our esophagus. Using this spice within meals can keep heartburn at bay, or if you prefer, it can also be found at health stores in a capsule form. This is definitely some great home remedies for heartburn.
A surefire way to decrease heartburn is also to keep a food journal of all the foods you eat and instances where heartburn is present; then omit or lessen those foods, which cause heartburn from your diet. Additionally, any one of these things listed above can be used as natural home remedies for heartburn along with many other available methods that have been studied and researched.