Heartburn is medically described to occur when stomach contents enter the esophagus. Once food enters the stomach it is doused with a substance that has the contents of hydrochloric acid. There are things in place which are supposed to help keep the acid out of the esophagus.
The esophageal sphincter is one such part which if not working correctly, is what causes heartburn to occur. There are many reasons as to why it would not be working most effectively.
Age: Age is one reason to a failing esophageal sphincter. As we age, the esophageal sphincter becomes less and less effective and thus it is unable to prevent all acidic fluids from entering the esophagus from the stomach.
Overeating: Many people may not know, that it is in fact possible to overfill your stomach. Your stomach can only expand so big, which if it is to its limit point, food will over spill into the esophagus causing heartburn and its symptoms.
Lying down after eating: Anybody ever tell you not to lie down after eating? Well there is some truth to that. Lying down increases the chances of food getting to the esophagus from the stomach.
Certain foods: There are foods that can actually cause the esophageal sphincter to become lax, making it less effective and allowing more fluids to reach the esophagus from the stomach.
Smoking: Smoking damages the lower esophageal sphincter.
Being overweight or obese: Excessive fat stores around the abdomen will increase abdominal pressure, resulting in food being forced the opposite way through the lower esophageal sphincter.
Drug consumption: Some drugs and medications can cause damage to the stomach walls causing acid drug reflux. Aspirin is one such drug, if taken excessively, can cause damage to the stomach walls.
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