HEALTH

What Causes Heartburn

Otherwise healthy people often wonder what the causes for heartburn are when burning sensations are felt in the chest area; especially when lying down or bending forward. This sensation starts from the breastbone and seems to travel up along the neck and throat. Often times, sufferers will complain that the contents of the stomach – food and liquids – seem to be heading back up. They may also report a sour or even bitter aftertaste in the mouth during a heartburn episode.

The most likely causes for heartburn are the foods as well as drinks taken during a meal. Over 90% of heartburn or acid reflux sufferers can attest to this fact. Understanding which types of foods or drinks have a higher likelihood of contributing to acid reflux goes a long way to either minimizing or even avoiding the pain and discomfort. Controlling the intake of these foods and also drinks may prevent the painful conditions from recurring in the future.

The LES’ (lower esophageal sphincter) function is to keep the stomach’s contents out of the esophagus. Caffeinated drinks like coffee and tea tend to relax the LES. When the L’ENSEMBLE DES is relaxed, it fails to keep all of the stomach’s contents intact. Some of the acidic material push back into the esophagus leading to the burning sensation of heartburn. Apart from caffeinated drinks; alcoholic beverages and foods like chocolate, citrus fruits, tomatoes as well as tomato-based products are also main causes with regard to heartburn. They similarly rest the CES and the resultant acid reflux sears the esophageal walls causing heartburn. In addition, fatty foods and the effects of smoking weaken the LES and the loss of pressure leads to some of the acidic contents to escape into the wind pipe – again causing heartburn symptoms.

The L’ENSEMBLE DES is a critical factor in the discussion regarding the causes for acid reflux. When the CES is functioning properly, the valve opens up momentarily when food and drink arrive from the oesophagus above. When the LES is impaired it fails to keep all of the items of the stomach in. This condition is referred to as GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) by doctors. People who suffer from GERD may experience varying levels of discomfort. Although there are several factors that may reduceĀ heartburn no more, these same factors may contribute to the excessive production associated with acids in the stomach. Coupled with a weak LES along with subjecting the actual stomach to additional stresses – dressing in tight clothes or perhaps lying down right after heavy meals – may bring on heartburn symptoms. In summary, the causes of heartburn are largely dependent on one’s dietary and lifestyle choices.

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