What is heartburn?

Anxiety and stress can worsen heartburn symptoms. Some complementary and alternative treatments may help you cope with anxiety and stress. If your heartburn is worsened by anxiety and stress, consider trying: Aromatherapy; Gentle exercise, such as walking or riding a bike, but avoid vigorous exercise, which can worsen heartburn; Hypnosis; Listening to music; Massage; Relaxation techniques, such as guided imagery

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Also known as indigestion, dyspepsia, acid indigestion, non-cardiac chest pain, Pyrosis, Pyroses
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Heartburn is an uncomfortable but common feeling of burning or warmth in the chest. Although the pain of heartburn is felt in the chest, heartburn has nothing to do with your heart. Instead, heartburn is caused by stomach acid (see Media file 1). Continual bouts of heartburn can be a symptom of a more serious condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. Frequent or severe heartburn may limit daily activities and lead to further complications such as ulcers in the esophagus. With proper understanding of heartburn and treatment, relief can be obtained from this condition.


Almost everyone has heartburn sometimes. Heartburn is a painful burning feeling in your chest or throat. It happens when stomach acid backs up into your esophagus, the tube that carries food from your mouth to your stomach. If you have heartburn more than twice a week, you may have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). With GERD, the muscles at the end of your esophagus do not close tightly enough. This allows contents of the stomach to back up, or reflux, into the esophagus and irritate it. Pregnancy, certain foods, alcohol and some medications can bring on heartburn. Treating heartburn is important because over time reflux can damage the esophagus. Over-the-counter medicines may help. If the heartburn continues, you may need prescription medicines or surgery.

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Heartburn is a burning sensation in your chest, just behind your breastbone. Heartburn pain is often worse when lying down or bending over.

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Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD) occurs when stomach acid leaks back up into the oesophagus. This is known as acid reflux. The oesophagus is the tube that runs from your throat to your stomach.

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Indigestion is a common problem that causes pain/ discomfort in the upper abdomen with a feeling of fullness or bloating. Indigestion, medically referred to as dyspepsia, can occur after eating a meal. While it is usually associated with eating large meals, indigestion can occur even after eating smaller ones.

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Failure of proper digestion and absorption of food in the alimentary tract, and the consequences thereof.

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Heartburn - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Heartburn, also known as pyrosis or acid indigestion is a burning sensation in the chest, just behind the breastbone or in the epigastrium. ...

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Heartburn Symptoms: Burning, Pain, Difficulty Swallowing, and More

Apr 24, 2009 ... Heartburn is the symptom of acid reflux and GERD; however, not everyone with acid reflux has heartburn and not everyone with heartburn has ...

Read more on www.webmd.com

Heartburn -- familydoctor.org

Learn about the causes, prevention and treatment of heartburn.

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Heartburn - Heartburn Causes - Heartburn Prevention - Heartburn ...

Mar 9, 2011 ... Information on what causes heartburn, the symptoms of heartburn, how to prevent heartburn and how to live a heartburn-free life.

Read more on heartburn.about.com


Heartburn occurs when stomach acid backs up into your esophagus.

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Heartburn that occurs frequently and interferes with your routine is considered gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). GERD treatment may require prescription medications and, occasionally, surgery or other procedures. GERD can also cause serious complications.

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In most cases, gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD) can be diagnosed by your GP asking you about your symptoms. Further testing is not usually required but, if it is, there are a number of different ways that GORD can be confirmed. A procedure known as an endoscopy is the main diagnostic procedure that is used.

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Home Care
Pay attention to heartburn and treat it, especially if you feel symptoms often. Over time, ongoing reflux can damage the lining of your esophagus and cause serious problems. The good news is that making changes to certain habits can go a long way to preventing heartburn and other symptoms of GERD.

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Lifestyle and home remedies
You may find heartburn relief by making small changes. Consider trying to: Maintain a healthy weight. Excess pounds put pressure on your abdomen, pushing up your stomach and causing acid to back up into your esophagus. If your weight is healthy, work to maintain it. If you are overweight or obese, work to slowly lose weight no more than 1 or 2 pounds (0.5 to 1 kilogram) a week. Ask your doctor for help devising a weight-loss strategy that will work for you.; Avoid tightfitting clothing. Clothes that fit tightly around your waist put pressure on your abdomen and the lower esophageal sphincter.; Avoid foods and drinks that trigger heartburn. Everyone has specific triggers, such as alcohol...

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Medical advice
Call 911 if:You vomit material that is bloody or black like coffee grounds. ; Your stools are black (like tar) or maroon. ; The burning sensation is accompanied by chest squeezing, crushing, or pressure. Sometimes a heart attack is mistaken for heartburn.; The problem becomes frequent or doesn't go away with a few weeks of self-care. ; You start losing weight unintentionally. ; You have difficulty swallowing (food feels stuck as it goes down). ; You have a persistent, unexplained cough or wheezing....

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Self-help is often the best way to prevent or relive the discomfort of heartburn. Taking the following measures may help...

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Risk factors
Certain foods and drinks can trigger heartburn in some people, including: Alcohol; Black pepper; Chocolate; Coffee; Fatty food; Fried food; Ketchup; Mustard; Orange juice; Peppermint; Soft drinks; Tomato sauce; Vinegar

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Symptoms of heartburn include: 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

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There are a number of self-care techniques that may help to relieve the symptoms of gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD). These are outlined below.

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What to Expect at Your Office Visit
Almost everyone has occasional heartburn. If you have frequent, ongoing heartburn, you may have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

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