If you speak with pregnant woman about the various unpleasant symptoms of pregnancy, they will all likely agree that indigestion and acid reflux are close to the top worst symptoms they experience. Old wives tales use to predict that those pregnant women who had indigestion would end up with newborns with a full head of hair.
However, science has shown this to be non-conclusive and pregnant woman are chalking the heartburn up to being just another annoying aspect of being pregnant.
There are a few reasons why pregnant women are more likely to get heartburn than others. First, when you are pregnant, your hormone levels are much different than when you are not pregnant. The increase of hormones can have an effect on every aspect of your health, including your digestive health.
They can actually cause your lower esophageal sphincter to loosen a bit. This is the part of your esophagus that typically holds your food in your stomach, without letting the acid come back up. So if it loosens or softens, you could suffer from acid reflux.
In addition to the hormonal changes, there are physical changes going on as well. Many women don’t experience indigestion and acid reflux until later in their pregnancy. This is because as your pregnancy progresses, your body is changing shape. Your stomach area will keep expanding.
This expansion of the stomach area is one reason you may have indigestion. When your stomach expands, you will be having more pressure on your esophagus which can lead to uncomfortable symptoms such as indigestion.
While it may seem like there is nothing you can do to avoid heartburn in pregnancy, you should know that there are tips you can use to try your best to avoid it. First, the most important thing you can do is to avoid foods that give you indigestion. There may be foods that are specific to your case, but overall most women are affected by citrus foods, mint, spicy foods, fried foods, and chocolate.
Another important thing you can do is eat smaller meals. This also helps if you have morning sickness all day long. If you constantly are eating, only never eating too much, you will be less likely to have heartburn or morning sickness. Your body will never be too full and it will be able to process what you eat in a more controlled manner.
Something you may not know is that you can avoid indigestion and acid reflux simply by practicing proper posture. This is especially true of how you bend.
When you are pregnant, you should always bend down at the knees. Of course as your stomach grows you will have no other choice. But even early on, bending at the knees will not put as much pressure on your middle section, which will help you avoid the discomforts of indigestion.
So, instead of seeing indigestion and acid reflux as something you cant avoid with pregnancy, choose to fight it. You can use these tips to help you get through the rough times.
Of course, if you are still having severe acid reflux or indigestion you may want to consult your doctor to see if you need further medications or other treatments.