Waking up with a feeling of heartburn in the morning can be extremely worrying and uncomfortable. While you might already be used to the fact you have to deal with heartburn after a hearty or spicy meal, it can be unnerving to start your day in the same way.
Fortunately, there are certain ways that could help you successfully prevent morning heartburn. Continue reading to get more information about those useful tips and learn more about heartburn in general.
What Causes Heartburn?
Heartburn is a symptom of acid reflux which occurs when the muscles around the bottom of your esophagus become too relaxed and enable the stomach acid to escape into your esophagus and all the way up to your mouth.
This results in that unpleasant heartburn pain, which is often mistaken for a heart attack. You might be experiencing heartburn in the abdomen or your chest, accompanied by a bitter taste in your mouth. This might lead to problems with swallowing, a feeling of something in your throat, regurgitation, and other problems, which can be quite persisting.
It can be a little worrying if you suddenly start waking up with heartburn in the morning. Luckily, there are various treatments for this condition and each individual suffering from acid reflux and heartburn should make sure to explore different options.
It is also important to know that if left untreated, heartburn can cause serious damage to your esophagus, which can lead to further, even more serious issues down the line. In case you believe you are experiencing serious problems or have been suffering from heartburn for too long, consult your doctor as soon as possible.
Why Do We Suffer From Heartburn in the Morning?
There are several reasons behind that early morning heartburn you are experiencing, and the condition differs from daytime acid reflux. Nighttime or morning episodes generally occur less frequently but can last longer and be more intense.
Change of Position
So, what causes heartburn in the morning? The two main reasons are related to the changes that happen in your body during the night. Firstly, an upright body position during the day contributes to better digestion and your stomach is able to get emptied sooner, leaving fewer chances for heartburn to occur.
On the contrary, during sleep, your digestion slows down which increases the likelihood of acid reflux. It is important to note that sleeping through your nighttime heartburn episodes can lead to really bad heartburn in the morning. Such prolonged acid exposure can also be more harmful which is why it is extremely important to treat or prevent morning heartburn.
Secondly, when you chew and swallow food, saliva neutralizes stomach acid which is why heartburn is usually milder during the day. When you sleep, the production of saliva decreases and in stages of a deep sleep, the activity of swallowing completely shuts down, which is why the refluxed acid from the esophagus is not neutralized.
You might try to solve this problem by trying to get hydrated once you wake up, but many people experience heartburn after drinking water in the morning. In case you are dealing with the same problems, try drinking tea or even mineral water, such as Donat, instead of tap water. This natural mineral water is extremely rich in hydrogen carbonates, which bind acids to themselves, thus neutralizing the stomach acid that escapes to your food pipe.
With its gentle bubbles as well as its rich mineral content, Donat is not only going to help you with that unwelcome burning sensation in your throat and chest, but is also going to contribute to your overall health and wellbeing (medically proven!), especially to a healthy digestive process and a strong immune system.
What Can We Do to Prevent Morning Heartburn?
If you are wondering how to prevent heartburn in the morning, here are some golden rules to follow:
Do not eat before going to bed
Eating less than three hours before bedtime can make acid reflux and morning heartburn much worse. The reason for this is that your stomach will still be full when you go to bed and this will put more pressure on stomach acid which can easily escape all the way up to your mouth. Make sure your stomach is as empty as possible before lying down in the evening.
Avoid trigger foods
Certain foods and drinks can make the symptoms much worse at any time of the day and of course also at night. Avoid tomato sauce, garlic, onion, coffee, spicy and fatty meals as well as citrus fruits if you are suffering from heartburn. Moreover, cut down on smoking and drinking as they are also common acid reflux triggers and rather opt for some natural remedies.
Adjust your sleeping position
As mentioned above, the upright position is one of the reasons people experience milder heartburn during the day. Of course, your position during sleep cannot be completely upright, but it might help you to sleep on an incline as this reduces acid exposure. If it is impossible for you to fall asleep in this position, try sleeping on your side as this will also offer quicker relief than sleeping on your back or stomach.
As you can see, there are several ways that could help you overcome your heartburn problems, such as elevating the end of your bed and avoiding certain trigger foods.
If those tips do not help as prevention for your morning heartburn or you are experiencing chronic problems, talk to your doctor about further steps you could take to help keep your reflux symptoms to a minimum.
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