Who doesn’t hate acid reflux? Whether you like it or not, acid reflux or heartburn symptoms may appear when you get pregnant and this due to a few possible reasons:
- The increase of hormones in your body results in the softening of the ligaments that keep the lower esophageal sphincter firmly closed. When this occurs, you have a reflux of gastric acid and food to the esophagus and throat.
- Your baby creates more pressure in your stomach. With that being said, the contents of your stomach are forced to the lower esophageal sphincter and then to your esophagus.
How to avoid it?
You may be wondering, what can I do to avoid it? The following are some tips that may help you deal with it, although it may not get rid completely of it:
- Avoid food that may trigger the heartburn. For instance you may want to avoid spicy foods, chocolates, mustard, citrus fruits and juices, tomatoes and tomato based products, fried foods, fatty foods and dishes that are highly seasoned. You may want to ask your doctor if he/she can provide you a list of foods to avoid.
- Get rid of caffeine such as coffee, soda and tea. Too much caffeine will cause your lower esophageal sphincter to relax.
- Avoid eating large meals. Instead take several small meals throughout the day.
- Avoid eating in a rush and chew your food thoroughly.
- Don’t go to sleep right after eating. Instead consider waiting at least three hours after having your last meal.
- Drink plenty glasses of water a day. At least 8 to 10 glasses. This will allow your stomach to expand and the lower esophageal sphincter will have less pressure. Also, this will allow for better pictures at your elective ultrasound!
- When you sleep consider elevating your head. You may want to raise your bed at least 6 to 8 inches. You may also utilize a wedge pillow.
- Wear clothes that are not too tight. Tight clothes around your waist and stomach will trigger heartburn.
- When bending, don’t bend at the waist level, instead bend at the knees. When you bend at your waist level you add too much pressure to your stomach.
- When sitting, don’t slouch. Sit erect and relaxed.
- Monitor your weight as too much will give more stress to your stomach.
- Stay away from alcoholic beverages. Do we need to say more about this?
- Finally, avoid smoking. Doctors state that smoking also may cause several effects on pregnant women and the fetus.