One important difference is that heartburn usually does not start or worsen with physical activity, while pain related to the heart often comes on with exertion (angina). Heartburn symptoms include a burning pain in the center of the chest, behind the breastbone (see Media file 1). It often starts in the upper abdomen and spreads up into the neck.
Antacids are one of the most common over-the-counter medications to treat heartburn. As with any drug, antacids should be used cautiously during pregnancy. Raise the head of the bed 4 to 6 inches. This can help reduce acid reflux by decreasing the amount of gastric contents that reach the lower esophagus.
This means that your heartburn needs to be controlled to protect you from complications such as damage to the esophagus. Over-the-counter antacids such as Tums, Rolaids, and Maalox may help you cope with occasional heartburn symptoms. Those made of calcium carbonate or magnesium are good options. However, it may be best to avoid magnesium during the last trimester of pregnancy.
By blocking histamine, this drug reduces the amount of acid produced in your stomach. This effect prevents heartburn symptoms.
Sodium bicarbonate, also known as baking soda, can relieve heartburn and indigestion. It should always be mixed with at least 4 ounces of water and taken one to two hours after meals, not on an overly full stomach.
- But talk to your OB or midwife before beginning an OTC med like Tagamet to treat acid reflux.
- It is common during pregnancy because of hormonal changes, and because the growing baby is pushing up against the stomach.
- Do not use it for more than two weeks, and do not give it to children under 12 years old, unless your health care provider tells you to.
The increasing pressure on your stomach as your baby grows can also force the acid into the oesophagus. While antacids have been used in pregnancy, there are other treatments for heartburn that may not be appropriate during pregnancy. If you are pregnant, you should speak to your doctor prior to using heartburn treatments, such as H2 blockers and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs).
This leads to irritations and symptoms of heartburn. Heartburn in pregnancy may occur because of changing hormone levels, which can affect the muscles of the digestive tract and how different foods are tolerated. Pregnancy hormones can cause the lower esophageal sphincter (the muscular valve between the stomach and esophagus) to relax, allowing stomach acids to flow back up into the esophagus. In addition, the enlarged uterus can crowd the abdomen, pushing stomach acids upward. Although it’s rare, gallstones can also cause heartburn during pregnancy.
Heartburn occurs when the valve between the stomach and the esophagus are unable to prevent stomach acid from passing back into the esophagus. During pregnancy, the hormone progesterone causes the valve to relax, which can increase the frequency of heartburn. This allows stomach acid to pass into the esophagus and irritate the lining. If you had gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) before pregnancy, heartburn is nothing new – but treating it during pregnancy might be. Now that you’re expecting, talk to your practitioner about whether the prescription meds you’re taking are still okay now that you’re pregnant.
Heartburn symptoms may mimic chest pain that occurs during a heart attack. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) may produce other symptoms. The cause of heartburn (also called gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD) during pregnancy is more complicated than in the non-pregnant state.