Heartburn is usually described as pain in the chest. This normally happens when stomach acid flows back up into the esophagus (acid reflux) hence causing a burning sensation – that is usually around the chest or where the heart is. Since stomach acid is causing the burning sensation, heartburn is commonly associated with hyperacidity.
When one suffers heartburn, it is common to say Acid reflux is happening. Acid reflux is the actual physical flow of stomach acid back into the esophagus. This is what causes one to feel heartburn.
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease
GERD is basically Heartburn and Acid Reflux that occur regularly; usually at least twice a week, or in some cases, even as little as once a week. According to the Clinical Practice Guidelines on the Diagnosis and Treatment of GERD 2014,
Heartburn and acid regurgitation are often considered the typical symptoms of GERD and an office diagnosis of GERD may be made when these are present.
A clinical diagnosis of GERD can already be made even without an endoscopy as long as symptoms such as heartburn and acid reflux are present. It is still best to consult your doctor if you are unsure about the symptoms you are experiencing since these can also be mistaken for other complications.
So now that we have a better understanding of how Heartburn, Acid Reflux, and GERD are all inter-related, what are their typical symptoms?
A burning pain in the chest that usually occurs after eating and may occur at night
Pain that worsens when lying down or bending over
Burping with a bitter or acidic taste in the mouth (Nadidighay)
A feeling of vomiting or might vomit (Naduduwal)
Actual vomiting (Nasusuka)
Stomach pain from hyperacidity (Sinisikmura)
are very similar to the triggers of hyperacidity
Spicy or fatty food
Skipping meals or irregular eating habits
Fasting or starving
Alcoholic drinks and smoking
Caffeine, softdrinks or acidic beverages
Pregnant women are more prone to suffering heartburn or acid reflux
Similar to hyperacidity, avoiding triggers over a long period of time will help prevent heartburn. Aside from this, OTC solutions may also help relieve heartburn and its accompanying symptoms. Antacids, H2 Blockers or a combination of both (like Kremil-S Advance) may be used to provide quick and long lasting relief.
Pregnant women are more likely to suffer from symptoms of heartburn because the hormonal changes sometimes allow the esophageal muscles to relax – allowing acid to flow back up. To lessen the chances of heartburn try to avoid eating heavy meals at night and or sleeping on your right side. If you are already suffering from heartburn, you may also try Kremil-S Advance. It is generally safe for pregnant women, however it would still be best to consult your doctor.