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  What Causes Heartburn at Night?

There are several health conditions that are common to people around the world and one of them is having heartburn. This usually starts when a burning sensation from the upper abdomen goes up to the chest which can go further to the throat. There are also instances that this burning sensation can reach even the arms, jaw and back of a person. It can be frequrent, especially when the person is in a prone position. The term heartburn was derived from chest pains that are due to the stomach acid that flows back to the esophagus but is not directly connected to the heart.

what causes heartburn at nightAcid reflux can occur anytime but it is most common at night (silent reflux). If you experience heartburn frequently at night, then there is something that definitely activates it. It is necessary to know what causes your heartburn at night in order for you to know what to do to prevent its occurrence for this may come surprisingly.

Food that the person has taken in is a great factor and contributor to heartburn. Foods that are acidic, spicy, fatty foods, and chocolates can aggravate should not be eaten for they can greatly cause it. Beverages that are rich in alcohol and caffeine are also reasons why a person experiences chest pains. Other factors like pregnancy, tension, obesity and emotional disorder can result in this symptom. Overeating at night will worsen the burning sensation so you have to limit the food intake.

GERD or gastroesophageal reflux disease is directly connected to heartburn. GERD is an illness wherein the acid in the stomach is flowing back to the esophagus thus producing a burning sensation. This is possible especially if the valve called the esophageal sphincter malfunctions for it is this valve that can hinder the acid to go up to the esophagus.

The position in which the person is sleeping or laying down can also be a trigger. This is considered as the primary contributor to the health condition because once the person is lying down flat or in a prone position, the liquid inside the stomach can easily move to every direction including towards the esophagus for it will have no trouble opposing the pull of the gravity anymore. It can easily flow back to the esophagus thus producing heartburn.

Another factor that can trigger the symptom at night is toothpaste. This is not known by all reflux sufferers but toothpaste can cause frequent chest pains at night. Toothpaste contains chemicals that can activate or encourage the symptom, especially those with mint flavors. The use of natural toothpaste is advisable at night to prevent the chest pains.

This symptom can be treated or prevented in many ways. Elevate the head for about 6 inches high when lying down with the use of pillows, hard objects or wooden blocks can help avoid heartburn. This will prevent the acid in the stomach from flowing to the esophagus as the gravity will help keep the acidity still. Also you have to keep yourself away from eating too much at night now that you already know it can cause the pain. Do not take in anything 2 hours before you go to bed or lying down. Practice lying on your left side to help the process of digestion.

Refrain from eating fruits and drinking juices that are quiet high in acid content such as tomatoes, lemons and oranges. Fried and spicy foods must be avoided as well. Eat foods such as papaya, banana and pineapple for they will be of big help. There are over the counter medicines to help lessen the heartburn that you may avail. If you think the reflux is already serious and bothersome, better have your doctor check your condition.