Tuesday, June 7, 2011

My heart is burning!!!

Both my pregnancies are torturing me from the start till the end. How i envy people that don't have such problems!

Into my 3rd trimester now and i'm experiencing frequent heartburn! I vividly remember that during Raeann's time, my heartburn was so serious & causing me great discomfort for the whole of my 3rd trimester. Now, this is the start again...

What is Heartburn?

Heartburn is an uncomfortable but common feeling of burning or warmth in the chest. Although the pain of heartburn is felt in the chest, heartburn has nothing to do with your heart. Instead, heartburn is caused by stomach acid.

Continual bouts of heartburn can be a symptom of a more serious condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. Frequent or severe heartburn may limit daily activities and lead to further complications such as ulcers in the esophagus. With proper understanding of heartburn and treatment, relief can be obtained from this condition.

About 30% of adults experience occasional heartburn, while 10% experience heartburn every day. About 25% of pregnant women have heartburn or related symptoms.

P/S : I happened to be in the sway 25% again! =.=

Heartburn causes?

The food that is swallowed travels from the mouth to the stomach through a hollow tube called the esophagus (or food pipe). Before entering the stomach, food must pass through a tight muscle at the lower part of the esophagus called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). The lower esophageal sphincter prevents food from traveling backward into the esophagus.

Once in the stomach, stomach acid digests the food. This acid is very strong and can damage most parts of the body. Fortunately, the stomach is protected from its own acid by a special mucous layer. The esophagus, however, does not have any such special protection. If the lower esophageal sphincter does not close completely, the lower part of the esophagus can be damaged by stomach acid. When this happens, heartburn may be experienced.

The lower esophageal sphincter may not close completely thus allowing stomach acid into the esophagus for these reasons:

  • Certain foods and drinks are known to loosen the lower esophageal sphincter. These include chocolate, peppermint, caffeine-containing beverages (such as coffee, tea, and soft drinks), fatty foods, and alcohol.
  • Heartburn often depends on the body's position. It is easier for stomach acid to flow back into the esophagus if you are lying down or bending over.
  • Anything that increases the pressure on the stomach and forces stomach acid backward into the esophagus can also cause heartburn. This is why lifting, straining, coughing, tight clothing, obesity, and pregnancy can worsen heartburn.
  • People who suffer from certain medical conditions may have an increased chance of heartburn. These conditions include hiatal hernia, diabetes, and many autoimmune diseases (CREST syndrome, Raynaud phenomenon, and scleroderma).
  • Many prescription medications can loosen the lower esophageal sphincter, including certain blood pressure and heart medications, and the asthma drug theophylline.
  • Many substances directly irritate the lining of the esophagus and can contribute to heartburn. These include spicy foods, citrus fruits and juices, tomatoes and tomato sauces, cigarette smoke, aspirin, ibuprofen (with brand names such as Motrin and Advil), and medicines for osteoporosis.

P/P/S : Maybe cos i'm too fat now! FML! :(

Extracted from http://www.emedicinehealth.com/heartburn/article_em.htm

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for reading my humble blog, will reply to you shortly.