Heartburn

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My wife sometimes suffers with heartburn, acid indigestion or what doctors call gastroesophageal reflux. Heartburn is a burning sensation that starts at the base of the breastbone. Heartburn pain can cause intense pain and can be mistaken for a heart attack. Most people that have a bad attack of heartburn feel like they are having a heart attack.

The symptoms of heartburn are as follows a burning sensation behind the breastbone, nausea, belching, bloated feeling, and a sore throat from the acid reflux.

The symptoms of a heart attack are as follows intense chest pain, radiating pain to the jaw, back, neck, and arms. Other symptoms of a heart attack are Fainting, numbness in a limb, breathlessness, sudden nausea and vomiting, cold and clammy feeling and sweating.

Now if you look at the symptoms of heartburn and heart attack you can see why some people mistake heartburn for a heart attack because both are very painful experiences.

Heartburn is caused by backflow of stomach acids into the esophagus. There is a valve located at the bottom of the esophagus that relaxes to allow food into the stomach and if this valve has a drop in pressure or the valve becomes week this will allow stomach acids back into the esophagus.

My wife has figured out that certain foods and circumstances can increase the possibilities of getting heartburn. Here are some things that can increase heartburn cigarette smoking, overeating, drinking alcohol, eating fatty or spicy food, stress, or strong smells can cause my wife heart burn.

The basic treatment for heartburn is to take non-prescription antacids. The best way to control heartburn is to eat small meals and avoid cigarettes, alcohol, coffee, stress, spicy foods, wait before lying down after eating, avoid bending over after a meal, and avoid wearing tight belts or tight clothing.

You should go to the doctor if your heartburn is accompanied by vomiting or nausea, numbness in a limb, or become cold and clammy. You should also consult your doctor if you have heartburn more than two times a week on a regular basis.

Heartburn usually begins with an hour or so after eating and can continue for hours. A frequent severe heartburn can cause erosion of the esophagus. Heartburn is not usually dangerous but frequent heartburn over a long period of time may mean you may have other problems.

Your doctor may want to do an examination of the upper digestive tract if antacids or other prescribed medicines fail to control your problem with heartburn.

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