Heartburn during pregnancy is a common complaint. Feelings of burning in the stomach, acid taste in the mouth and even vomiting are common symptoms. Heartburn can also make sleeping almost impossible, bending over horrible and eating certain foods a no no. This article will give you an idea of why you get heartburn during pregnancy and a few ideas on how you can reduce your chance of getting heartburn.
There are several reasons why women that are pregnant tend to experience heartburn. I will just discuss two of the most common reasons for brevity.
The first, is the increase of hormones in the woman's body while they are pregnant. The occurrence of this will result in softening the ligaments which function to keep the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) firmly closed. When the LES relaxes at unsuitable periods, tendency is, this will let the gastric acid and food to reflux back to the esophagus and throat.
The second reason of experiencing heartburn during pregnancy is because the changes in the body and the development of the baby creates more pressure on the woman's stomach. Therefore, the stomach contents are forced right into the LES because of increased pressure, and then into the esophagus, throat and mouth causing burning and a sour taste.
The good news is that there are several methods that a pregnant woman can observe to lessen the discomfort brought on by heartburn. The following are some good recommendations to help reduce heartburn during pregnancy:
1. Avoid the foods that triggers heartburn. Examples of these are chocolates, spicy foods, citrus fruits and juices, mustard, tomatoes and tomato based products, fatty foods, fried foods, and highly seasoned dishes.
2. Get rid of drinks that have caffeine, like tea, coffee, and soda. Too much of these will cause the LES to relax and let the acid to return into the esophagus. You should not drinking much caffeine because it has a tendency to increase the babies heart rate and dehydrate you.
3. Stay away from alcoholic beverages. This, like caffeine tends to relax the LES thus, creating heartburn.
4. Avoid eating large meals. It is suggested that taking numerous small meals throughout the day will be better.
5. Slow down when eating your meal. Chewing foods thoroughly will really help in avoidance of heartburn, so take your time while eating.
6. Rest for at least three hours after having your last meal before you lay down.
7. Drink your water throughout the day. You should be drinking 8-10 glasses of water per day. Drinking the water throughout the day will keep you hydrated (which will help reduce premature contractions) and reduce the amount of fluid in your stomach at any one time. This will reduce the pressure on the LES and reduce heartburn.
8. When sleeping elevate the head of the bed at least six to eight inches. Try to sleep with elevated head and shoulders by using a wedge pillow. This will reduce the pressure on the LES.
9. Don't wear tight fitting clothes. Tightness around the waist and stomach will trigger heartburn by increasing pressure on the LES.
10. Mind your posture. Bend at your knees not at the waist. Sit straight in a chair.
11. Watch your weight. Increasing your weight to much during pregnancy can increase the amount of heartburn you experience. Maintain a sensible amount of weight gain.
12. Avoid smoking. Smoking is not only harmful to you and your fetus but it increases the amount of heartburn you will experience. Don't smoke!
If you follow these twelve recommendations you will reduce the amount of heartburn during pregnancy. This will make you a happier, healthier mom.