Have you ever suffered from heartburn or indigestion? They are both common issues that can occur from time to time but can be interchangeable terms for most people. But do you know they’re two separate problems that have different reasons for occurring related to both obesity and acid reflux, and even GERD?

Whenever we feel like we’re suffering from an upset stomach or burning chest, we usually say that it’s either heartburn or indigestion. Sometimes both can happen at the same time, and we’ll say that it’s one or the other while in our discomfort. But these conditions are more different than we actually think they are.

Heartburn and indigestion are two terms that are often get used interchangeably. But do you want to know the differences between them? Continue reading to learn more about the signs of each one and how to manage them.

Heartburn, Acid Reflux, and GERD

When stomach acid flows up the esophagus and causes pain, this results in the condition known as acid reflux and causes the pain we call heartburn. A chronic version of this is also called gastroesophageal reflux disease, better known as GERD. This can cause damage to a person’s esophagus and cause a myriad of other problems over time.

It can be very uncomfortable for anyone dealing with heartburn, where a lingering pain can happen in one’s chest. It can last anywhere from a few minutes to hours at a time and even cause someone to lose sleep with how uncomfortable it can feel.

Heartburn is common among people, with about 20% of Americans who deal with heartburn weekly. The problems can start from eating certain foods or having a very large meal. The problems can start from eating certain foods or having a very large meal. Carbonated drinks, spices, and other fried foods can trigger heartburn.

What is Indigestion?

Whenever you have an upset stomach or bellyache, it is known medically as dyspepsia. Most refer to it as indigestion, and it can be very uncomfortable and sometimes painful. This can often occur as a feeling one gets in the stomach during or after eating a meal.

The common reason why indigestion happens is because of a person eating too much or eating too fast. This can also happen from consuming foods that cause the body to react to, such as high-fat foods. Other causes of indigestion can be how you eat your food as well, such as chewing with an open mouth or swallowing too much air as you eat.

At the same time, indigestion can also be triggered by underlying disorders and other problems like GERD and other more serious medical conditions. However, indigestion can also happen due to frequent anxiety and depression, leading to other digestion issues if never addressed.

Symptoms of Indigestion

One can notice symptoms of indigestion when they happen, which can include heartburn among them. Other symptoms of the condition can often include burping, loss of appetite, and feeling full very quickly while eating. At other times a person can also hear grumbling noises from the stomach, as well as suffer from flatulence and nausea at the same time.

Most symptoms of indigestion will go away after some time, but can be more serious if a person is under severe stress. Serious reactions like vomiting or an acidic taste in the mouth have been known to happen, as well as diarrhea in some cases.

Treating or Preventing Heartburn and Indigestion

Luckily for everyone, both heartburn and indigestion can be treated easily with over-the-counter products. Antacids can be used for light or mild cases of heartburn, which neutralize the acid of the stomach. They can be taken when you notice symptoms or before eating to prevent symptoms from happening.

For more serious treatments, proton pump inhibitors and H2 blockers can be used to decrease the amount of acid within the stomach. This can help those who have frequent heartburn or suffer from GERD, allowing their esophagus or throat lining to heal.

There are a number of ways to prevent heartburn and indigestion before things get serious. Many of the steps a person can take start with the type of food they eat. Eating smaller meals or eating less is an easy step to take, as well as avoiding specific foods you know that trigger any of the conditions.

Eliminating certain foods from a diet is also a good way to prevent heartburn or symptoms of indigestion. This can include avoiding fried or very fatty foods, not consuming alcohol, and removing certain spices that food is cooked with.

Other steps that a person can take to further prevent any other issues include not eating any food a few hours before bedtime, as well as avoiding wearing tight clothing. Both of these can help lower pressure on the abdomen and allow a person to have better sleep.

Knowing Heartburn and Indigestion Better

After reading our overview on heartburn and indigestion, you’ll have a better understanding of how different they are and how they related to issues like acid reflux and obesity. While these health issues are common among people, they can be treated easily when you know the specifics of each condition.

Looking for help dealing with heartburn or indigestion? Visit the GerdLi website for an effective and natural solution for heartburn relief. You can read through blog posts with great information about GERD and other conditions, as well as approaching a better path to better health.

Shop Now!

Dr. Minhas, M.D.

Board-certified internal medicine (ABIM)

Leave A Comment