There are many over the counter and prescription medicines available for heartburn relief as well as prescription medicines for severe heartburn such as Pevacid, Potonix, and Prolisec. However there are also natural remedies for heartburn may be just as effective and cause fewer side effects.
Most women begin to experience heartburn by the second trimester of pregnancy, even those who have a healthy diet and stress-free lifestyle. Heartburn symptoms occur when stomach acid backs up into the esophagus causing a burning sensation in the chest, stomach or back of the throat.
Prescription medicines for heartburn are designed for those who experience symptoms several times per week. It is important to note that most prescription medicines for heartburn have some undesirable side effects including constipation and/or diarrhea due to high aluminum or calcium salt concentration.
Antacids are designed to neutralize the amount of acid in the stomach, by reducing the production of stomach acid. Some antacids even contain an chemical that coats the wall of the esophagus and reduces the burning feeling or symptom without actually treating it.
The body needs stomach acid to aid in digestion. So when pregnant women take antacids frequently they increase the problem. The stomach recognizes the reduced stomach acid and acid secretions increase to maintain the bodies optimal digestion performance. Thereby stimulating higher levels of acid production.
Natural remedies for heartburn may include fennel and peppermint. Fennel seeds can be seeped in water to create a soothing tea. Peppermint has been used for centuries to aid in digestion. Both Fennel seeds and peppermint have been used by Native Americans and Europeans as natural remedies for heartburn.
Rhubarb is another natural remedy for heartburn and indigestion used by Native Americans. Rhubarb grows wild and is available in some grocery stores. It is similar in appearance to celery, but is reddish in color. It is most effective when eaten raw, although it does a have a slight bitter taste.
Eating a small wedge of raw potato may help treat heartburn by absorbing some of the troublesome stomach acid.
Eating small frequent meals helps the pregnant stomach perform the task of digestion more easily.
Walking each night after your meal will also speed up digestion with minimal acid production.
Overeating, spicy foods, caffeinated beverages, alcohol and even stress can lead to symptoms of heartburn. Some women report increased incidence of heartburn related to tomato based foods, miracle whip, sugar, and complex proteins.