Approximately every person has had acid reflux or heartburn in their life. Acid reflux is usually quite uncomfortable, making some seek treatment, especially if it keeps recurring. However, you can also decide to utilize some lifestyle modifications to help alleviate its symptoms, thus improving your quality of life. You do not have to keep complaining of heartburn or acid reflux because there are some preventive measures you can apply to help you do away with the discomforts associated with acid reflux. If you have acid reflux San Antonio, and you are interested in learning various preventive measures to help you deal with heartburn and acid reflux, read on.
Sleeping on your left side
According to research, sleeping on your left side is encouraged because sleeping on the right side may worsen reflux symptoms while asleep. Usually, lying on your left side decreases acid exposure to your esophagus, thus reducing discomfort. It does so because, normally, the esophagus enters the stomach from the right side. Since you are lying on the left, the esophageal sphincter lies above the acid level preventing it from entering the esophagus.
1. Chew gum
Generally, chewing gums help decrease the acid in your esophagus. It could also help if you chew gums containing bicarbonate because they help neutralize the acidity in your stomach, thus preventing reflux. Chewing gums also increase the production of saliva, which plays an essential role in clearing the acid in the esophagus. Therefore, chewing gums are effective in alleviating the symptoms of heartburn or treating acid reflux.
2. Take dinner early
Healthcare specialists encourage people with acid reflux to always ensure they take dinner three hours before going to bed. Laying horizontally after a meal often complicates digestion and worsens gastroesophageal reflux symptoms.
3. Elevating the head of your bed
Elevating the head of the bed is essential for people who only experience reflux symptoms at night, which tend to interfere with their sleep quality and make it quite challenging to fall asleep—in this case, raising the head of the bed help to reduce acid reflux, promoting your sleep quality.
4. Small, more frequent meals
Generally, the esophagus enters the stomach through a ring of muscles called the lower esophageal sphincter. The lower esophageal sphincter is a valve whose primary function is to prevent the acidic contents from the stomach from going up into the esophagus. The sphincter is always closed but opens when you eject, swallow or vomit. Of importance to note is that in people with acid reflux, the lower esophageal sphincter is dysfunctional or weakened, allowing the acidic content of the stomach to go up the esophagus. In other cases, when too much pressure is exerted on the muscle, it might cause the acid to squeeze the sphincter open, causing acid reflux. Since eating large meals worsens reflux symptoms, eating small frequent meals is encouraged.
Heartburn or acid reflux symptoms are serious and might worsen, thus affecting your quality of life. Therefore, you do not have to bear the symptoms because several preventive measures have been developed to provide relief. If you are interested in learning various acid reflux preventive measures, schedule an appointment at the Digestive & Liver Disease Center of San Antonio PPLC today.