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How Do I Stop Heartburn?

An antacid.
Drinking a mixture of baking soda and water can help with heartburn.
Chest pain may be mistaken for heartburn.
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  • Written By: Anna T.
  • Edited By: Kathryn Hulick
  • Last Modified Date: 09 July 2014
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It is usually possible to stop heartburn by taking medication designed to treat it. Proton pump inhibitors and H2 blockers are made to prevent heartburn, and antacids can treat it once it has begun. Proton pump inhibitors keep the stomach from releasing acid, and H2 blockers prevent the body from producing Histamine2, which sends acid-producing signals to the stomach. Antacids stop heartburn by increasing the pH level in your stomach, thereby making it less acidic. If you have chronic heartburn, a combination drug containing both an antacid and an H2 blocker could be a helpful option.

Some people use home remedies to stop heartburn and acid reflux instead of or in addition to medication. Drinking buttermilk and eating almonds, soda crackers, and apples may aid in reducing and preventing excess stomach acid. Sleeping with your head elevated, drinking lots of water between meals, and making an effort not to lie down immediately after each meal might also prevent extreme heartburn from occurring. If you are looking for immediate relief to stop heartburn and do not have any antacid on hand, mixing half a glass of water with 1/2 tsp (2.4 ml) of baking soda could provide temporary relief.

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If over the counter medication and home remedies seem to have little to no effect on your heartburn, it may be necessary to consult with a doctor. People with chronic heartburn that is resistant to medication are often diagnosed with GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disease. Diagnosing GERD usually involves several tests, including an endoscopic examination to see the degree of acid damage the stomach has sustained. Doctors may prescribe stronger acid blocking medication to GERD patients as well as suggesting lifestyle changes. Things like losing weight, avoiding spicy and greasy foods, and quitting smoking could have a substantial effect on GERD symptoms.

Heartburn and chest pain are frequently linked together because the symptoms of each are felt in the chest. Extreme heartburn may occasionally be mistaken for a heart attack. If heartburn is accompanied by heart attack symptoms such as nausea, fatigue, arm pain, sweating, shortness of breath, dizziness, or crushing pain in the center of the chest, medical attention should immediately be sought. Gall bladder attacks and muscle spasms in the abdominal area also typically cause chest pain that might be mistaken for heartburn. Problems like these could worsen quickly if not treated; seeing a doctor after the first occurrence of unexplainable chest pain might possibly save your life.

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Discuss this Article

ysmina
Post 3

I just discovered a great heartburn remedy. It's aloe vera juice. Most people don't know that aloe vera can be consumed. Of course, it's necessary to find an aloe vera product that's safe for consumption. I found aloe vera juice at my health food store and it was affordable as well. It doesn't taste too great but it stops heartburn fast.

stoneMason
Post 2

I was able to stop my heartburn by changing my diet.I reduced my caffeine intake first of all and I stopped smoking. I used to smoke before meals and I also had three or four cups of coffee per day. Now I only have one cup of coffee in the morning and I quit smoking altogether. These changes were enough for heartburn relief.

My doctor told me that caffeine causes too much acid production in the stomach, especially when the stomach is sensitive. Smoking, especially before meals, is harmful because it causes air to enter the stomach and cause indigestion.

fify
Post 1

Proton pump inhibitors and antacids definitely help with heartburn and they can be used. But I urge everyone to first see a doctor about their symptoms and requests some basic tests to find out the cause.

I suffered from heartburn for several years. My doctor did not run any tests for me. Instead he told me to use over-the-counter proton pump inhibitors. I used them for a long time, but my symptoms never completely resolved. I also developed vitamin and mineral deficiencies because proton pump inhibitors reduce their absorption.

I was so unsatisfied with my treatment that I switched to a different doctor. My new doctor is great and had me do a very simple breath test that only took five minutes. I had to blow into a small paper tester and then that paper was checked in the lab for stomach bacteria. My results came back positive, they found helicobacter pylori in my stomach.

I was treated with antibiotics and after the treatment, my heartburn symptoms completely disappeared. I'm not telling anyone to use antibiotics, I hope no one infers this result from my experience. All I'm saying is that the cause of the heartburn should be determined before someone starts using over-the-counter medications. When the problem can be resolved by treating the cause, why are we trying to mask the symptoms with drugs?

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