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Is it normal to have heartburn or heartburn during pregnancy?

Is it normal to have heartburn or heartburn during pregnancy?

Yes, it is totally normal. Studies suggest that more than 50% of pregnant women have ever experienced heartburn, heartburn or heartburn during pregnancy . So don't worry, you're not the only one.

Why is this heartburn common?

It occurs when stomach acid refluxes into the esophagus, the tube that carries ingested food and liquids from the mouth to the stomach. This is largely due to the fact that progesterone (a female hormone whose levels increase in pregnancy) relaxes the muscle of the lower esophageal sphincter and slows down gastric emptying, irritates the area and even inflames it. However, it is a reversible condition, since the symptoms resolve once the baby is born.

How can it be prevented?

• Avoid lying down immediately after eating. It is recommended to wait at least 2 hours, since lying down favors gastroesophageal reflux. It is also not advisable to bend over frequently after eating.

• Avoid foods that increase heartburn and can worsen symptoms. For example, certain condiments (vinegar, pepper or other spicy), citrus fruits (orange, tangerine, grapefruit, lemon) and their juices, tomato dishes or tomato sauce.

• Avoid foods that delay gastric emptying. We refer to carbonated drinks (carbonated, especially cola drinks), coffee, tea, chocolate and fatty foods or preparations (fried, stewed or fatty stews), as well as peppermint infusions, which relax the sphincter and favor the reflux.

• Increase fluid intake between meals. In turn, do not drink during meals so as not to increase the volume of the stomach. Drinking at small intervals helps prevent heartburn and nausea. Drinking dairy also helps neutralize acidity.

All these measures help relieve symptoms, but if the burning persists, the use of specific medication is often necessary, always on medical recommendation.

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