Pregnancy is a beautiful thing but it is definitely not without its ups and downs.
There are so many things to learn from pregnancy and what I’m about to talk about is not unfamiliar to a lot of pregnant women.
Heartburn during pregnancy.
Having heartburn during your second and third trimester of pregnancy is not unusual at all. Unfortunately, it’s one of those things that can be really uncomfortable.
I’ve had this problem in all 4 of my pregnancies and I hated each minute of it.
I set myself on a mission to find some natural home remedies for heartburn during pregnancy.
Today I’m going to go through some of the things that I have discovered along the way that can help to alleviate some of the uncomfortableness of pregnancy heartburn.
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What is heartburn in pregnancy?
Heartburn is a burning sensation that happens in the chest area when you are pregnant.
You can also get heartburn when you are not pregnant but the heartburn occurs for different reasons.
Heartburn does not discriminate and affects almost half of all pregnant women.
The degree to which a pregnant woman can get heartburn can vary.
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Why does heartburn occur?
Heartburn is caused when the acid in your stomach does not stay down and enters into your esophagus.
This can also be referred to as acid reflux.
During pregnancy, the hormone progesterone is released which causes the valve connecting your stomach to your esophagus to relax.
When this relaxes it becomes difficult to keep the acid down inside your stomach.
This is the reason that you feel almost like you want to be sick during an episode.
As your baby starts to get bigger and bigger and takes up more space in your stomach you will have even less space for your food.
Your growing uterus adds pressure to your intestines and stomach causing everything to be pushed up higher.
This is why the heartburn can feel worse from the second trimester up to the third trimester of pregnancy.
The good news is that as you get closer to your due date your baby will begin to drop down into your cervix and give you a little more room to eat.
Home remedies for heartburn during pregnancy
1. Eat food in small portions
This is a major tip and definitely one that you should try if you are having problems with heartburn.
Instead of eating 3 meals a day (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) try eating six small meals instead.
This will help to give you some relief as your stomach will not get as full so should reduce the acid reflux symptoms.
2. Chew as much as you can before swallowing
This is probably something we have all been guilty of at some point.
We are in a bit of a rush so we don’t chew our food as much as we should do. We swallow and then we are off. Wrong.
The more you chew and breakdown your food the easier it is for your food to properly digest.
If you have a good digestion system going on then your body should be able to quickly break the food down with stomach acid so you don’t feel too much of the effects of having heartburn.
3. Remain upright for as long as possible
You should avoid lying down for at least an hour after eating.
When you lie down your stomach contents are moved sideways and makes it easier for them to come back up into the esophagus.
Waiting an hour will give time for your food to digest properly.
When you do eventually lie down its best to do it on your left side. This is the safest way to sleep when you are pregnant.
4. Avoid trigger foods
Triggers foods can make the feeling of heartburn much worse, in fact, trigger foods can actually bring on heartburn if they are really extreme.
Some foods that can trigger heartburn are:
- Spicy food
- Carbonated drinks
- Coffee / tea
(The last one is a major bummer!)
Other things that can ease the discomfort of heartburn.
5. Drink water
Drinking water throughout the day can help to keep acid reflux away. Make sure you sip it slowly throughout the course of the day and not just in one sitting as that will cause your stomach to fill up with water and bring on heartburn.
6. Try yogurt or milk
This can help to extinguish the onset of heartburn.
7. Chew gum
Believe it or not but chewing gum can actually help you to reduce the effects of heartburn.
When you chew gum it produces excess saliva. Saliva contains bicarbonate and when this is swallowed it helps to neutralize the acid that is making its way up out of your stomach.
8. Try over the counter medicines
If nothing else seems to be working for you then maybe its time to look at some over the counter remedies that will help you get the much-needed relief that you need.
Final thoughts on home remedies for heartburn during pregnancy
Although heartburn is a horrible feeling just remember that it won’t last forever. My advice to you is to try and avoid it as much as you can before it happens.
Use some of the natural remedies mentioned above but if you are ever in doubt don’t hesitate to contact your healthcare professional.
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