A majority of Americans have at one time or another suffered from heartburn. How does one combat that awful burning sensation?

Well, first and foremost eat sensibly.  That doesn’t mean testing out the new Indian restaurant hot and spicy curry; nor does it imply consuming five bottles of Pepsi in an effort to cram for finals.  To summarize: Eat slowly, in order to give the digestive system time to do its job.  Avoid foods which are spicy; anything which contains caffeine; all carbonated beverages and late night forays into the refrigerator-in fact try not to eat anything including dinner after 7pm.

Do not take any over the counter products with the words “antiinflammatory” anywhere on the product labeling. This includes products such as Motrin, nuprin, naprosyn and feldene. Aspirin is also a frequent offender.  However, its use in preventing heart disease most likely would outweigh the potential for heartburn.  Talk to your doctor for further advice, if you are on aspirin.

Elevate the head of your bed, so that excess stomach acid will be more likely to travel downward into the small bowel rather than upwards into your esophagus. Get a good night’s sleep as lack of sleep also causes heartburn.

Antacids work rapidly by neutralizing stomach acid and provide quick but often only short term relief.  Depending on whether the antacids contain magnesium or calcium, diarrhea can occur.  Products such as Zantac and Cimetidine last longer than antacids but take longer to begin working. Sulfacralate is unique in that it provides a long lasting protective layer so that the acid will not cause injury to the wall of the stomach.  The problem is that this layer also prevents adsorption of many other medications as well. Prilosec and other similar medications work by inhibiting the production of stomach acid.  These products are very powerful, but may take several days to become effective. However, this class of medications has some significant potential side effects including possible thinning of the bone, low magnesium levels, increased risk of stomach ulcers and perhaps even a slight increased risk of stomach cancer.  Short term therapy with these agents of a few weeks to months is unlikely to result in any of these side effects however. Everyone adore to ask: help me write a paper because that one has already become the most reliable paper writing web page.

Heartburn is arguably as common as the cold, but no need to suffer through the heartburn just to enjoy that at the time oh so delicious jumbalayla!