What is Heartburn

Heartburn is usually caused due to overeating. This is also medically termed as indigestion. Heartburn is a sensation or feeling of burning in the chest. It is often accompanied with a bitter taste in the mouth or throat. A sufferer may also experience pain shooting up from the chest to neck, jaw and throat.

Heartburn is also used interchangeably with the “dyspepsia” medical term. Dyspepsia is although a combination of epigastric pain and heart burn. In dyspepsia the pain starts from the sternum and move above the umbical area.

Medical cause of heartburn:

The food that is consumed usually passes to the stomach through the esophagus tube. Many times the opening that allows as a link in between the stomach and esophagus closes and accumulates stomach acid. This process is also called as reflux. The stomach reflux acid further irritates the esophagus causing heartburn and chest pain.

Other causes of Heartburn :

Finding several causes of heartburn can help people to prevent it by changing their habits and lifestyle.

Fried foods: Oily foods also slow down the process of digestion by keeping the consumed food for a longer time in the stomach. With this delay in the digestion there is an increased stomach pressure that directly puts additional pressure on already weakened Lower esophageal sphincter (LES). Thus there is increase in the acid reflux into the esophagus.

  • Caffeine:
    Consumption of caffeine usually relaxes the Lower esophageal sphincter thus increasing the possibility of acid reflux in to the esophagus.
  • Chocolate:
    Chocolate contains obromine contents that also relax the muscles of esophageal sphincter, thus increasing stomach acid reflux.
  • Alcohol:
    It also acts as one of the major cause to increase the stomach acid by relaxing the LES and allowing acid reflux.
  • Tobacco:
    The chemical contents in a cigarette smoke also weaken the Lower esophageal sphincter by reaching the blood through the lungs.
  • Overeating :
    There is an additional pressure on LES due to a full stomach, thus causing the extra food to reflux back in to the esophagus tube.
  • Sleeping pattern:
    Heartburn is also caused due to immediately lying down after a heavy food. A full stomach causes additional pressure against the Lower esophageal sphincter thus, promoting the refluxed food.
  • Tight clothing:
    Generally, tight clothing like fitting belts and inner garments can put additional pressure on the stomach thus increasing additional force on the eaten food against the LES and promoting reflux food.

Heartburn can be easily treated by adopting regular habits like eating healthy food, avoid over eating, maintaining a healthy weight, quitting alcohol and smoking habits, sleeping pattern and avoiding foods that triggers heartburn.