Heartburn is one of the most common and frustrating symptoms that almost all women go through with some experiencing worse episodes of it than others do. Now, if you are excited about getting pregnant and you are looking for any early pregnancy symptoms that to tell if you are actually pregnant before testing, you might be wondering, “Is heartburn an early sign of pregnancy?” Here are some answers to those questions.
Heartburn and Pregnancy
Like bloating, some women can experience early pregnancy heartburn due to the increase of the progesterone hormone. Progesterone relaxes many smooth muscles around the body after you get pregnant. These muscles include the valve that separates your stomach from the esophagus. When the valve relaxes, it opens a path making it possible for the contents of your stomach to splash backward.
This situation results in stomach acid burning up your esophagus in addition to your throat. During the later months of the pregnancy, the heartburn could become worse because the uterus will push the digestive organs forcing, even more acid, up the esophagus.
The HCG or the Human Chorionic Gonadotropin hormone, which is the pregnancy hormone, also slows down digestion. This means that your stomach will remain fuller for longer and will produce even more acid to help with increased rates of digestion. This could be another cause of heartburn because when the stomach cannot contain all that food with the extra acid, it pushes some up the esophagus leading to heartburn.
What Exactly Are The Symptoms Of Heartburn?
What does heartburn actually feel like during pregnancy? Heartburn will cause a burning feeling in your chest right behind your breastbone. The acid could be completely irritating and it could cause pain and discomfort. Unless you have GERD during your early pregnancy, you should not have severe heartburn.
Will The Heartburn Affect The Baby?
No, your heartburn will have no effects on your baby what so ever.
How Do You Get Rid Of The Heartburn?
Unfortunately, during the whole pregnancy term, you will not be able to stop heartburn completely. There are times you will still feel it. However, there are many ways you can prevent it from driving you mad. There are certain heartburn triggers that you can avoid and different ways you can position yourself in order to avoid it.
What Can You Do About It?
• Avoid the foods and beverages that trigger heartburn causing gastrointestinal distress. Some of these foods include chocolate, carbonated drinks, alcohol, caffeine, citrus fruits, tomatoes, spicy foods, highly seasoned foods, fatty foods, and mustard.
• Avoid eating big meals- Instead, eat a little food at one time, but do so frequently throughout the day. Chew your food thoroughly and take your time when you eat.
• Do not drink water during meals- At least do not drink a lot of it. Instead, drink before or after your meal because too much fluid mixed with food will distend your stomach increasing the intensity of your heartburn. Drinking water while pregnant is very important but sipping it moderately throughout the day will be much better for you.
• Take advantage of gravity- Try to sleep with your head and shoulders propped up in a way that ensures your upper body is at a higher level than your feet are. This will stop the reflux and help you breathe a lot better.
• Do not lie down after your meal- Avoid lying down at least an hour after you have had your meal and if you must, it will be better for you to lie on your left side. You are supposed to lie on your left side because it makes the food pass down to your intestines a lot faster and this will alleviate reflux.
• Have more fluids than solids- Liquids tend to move through the stomach a lot quicker than solids. This means that things like soups, yogurt, smoothies, puddings, and shakes will be good for you. However, this is not to say that you should avoid solids, you should take good care of yourself.
• Go loose on the clothes- you need to wear clothes that allow you to breathe for you to relieve the heartburn sensation. Tight clothing tends to fuel the burn. Therefore, wearing loose fitting clothes might save you from the unpleasant experience of having heartburn.
• Chew more- If you chew more and slowly, you will be doing yourself a favor. This is because chewing is actually the first step of digestion and when you do all the work, you leave very little to your stomach. When you eat quickly, you will swallow air along with the food and this will create gas pockets in your stomach, which you do not want.
• Eat sugarless gum- Chewing gum will increase the production of saliva and this saliva can neutralize the acid coming up your esophagus.
What Treatments Can You Take To Ease Or Stop
Heartburn During Pregnancy?
Most women take Tums and Rolaids. These drugs are also good sources calcium. Of course, you should avoid any medication that contains sodium or sodium bicarbonate. If the heartburn becomes persistent, though this happens during the later months of the pregnancy, you should see a doctor so they can prescribe drugs that will block the heartburn completely. Doctors will do so by dealing with the production of acid in the stomach.
What Are Some Of The Natural Remedies For
Heartburn During Pregnancy?
• Papaya- Papaya is a good remedy for heartburn but it should be very ripe when you eat it.
• Almonds- These are great stomach settlers and they are just as good for calcium.
• Honey in milk- Honey is yummy and it deals with heartburn at the same time.
• Peppermint- This is great in easing heartburn and you can make peppermint tea or get peppermint lozenges.
• Plain water- You might not believe this but heartburn could be caused by dehydration. You need to drink at least eight glasses of water throughout the day but do not drink too much of it at a time.
Some remedies might not work for you as best as they do for others but it will be worth trying since it will cost you little to try them.