What Causes Heartburn

171578741_heartburn_Patrick_Heagney.jpg
Courtesy Patrick Heagney (Getty Images)

There are several causes of heartburn. Finding out what these are, and how they cause heartburn, can help you prevent it.

What Can Cause Heartburn?

  • Heartburn Triggers
    Heartburn can be caused by a number of factors. These include certain foods, and others are factors such as being overweight or lifestyle habits, such as smoking.
  • Mechanisms of Acid Reflux
    There are three disturbances in the normal gastrointestinal (GI) function that can lead to Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD).

    When It's More Than Just Heartburn - Acid Reflux Disease

    • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease - What is it?
      Gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) does not close properly and stomach contents leak back, or reflux, into the esophagus.
    • Gastroesophageal Reflux in Infants
      Gastroesophageal Reflux (GER) occurs often in normal infants. One of the most common symptoms is spitting up. More than half of all babies experience reflux in the first 3 months of life. Only a small number of infants have severe symptoms due to GER. Learn the sypmtoms and how is it diagnosed.
    • Gastroesophageal Reflux in Children and Adolescents
      Almost all children have a little bit of reflux, without being aware of it. For some children and adolescents, however, this reflux may be chronic. Gastroesophageal Reflux (GER) often begins in infancy and then subsides, but for a small number of infants, GER continue as they grow older. Learn the symptoms and how it's diagnosed.

      Other Conditions Cause Heartburn

      • Peptic Ulcers
        A peptic ulcer is a sore or lesion that forms in the lining of the stomach or duodenum. Ulcers in the stomach are called gastric or stomach ulcers, and those in the duodenum are called duodenal ulcers, and both are usually referred to as peptic ulcers. Understanding the causes and symptoms of peptic ulcers, and then getting a diagnosis and proper treatment, most people can find relief.
      • Hiatal Hernia
        Some people suffer from Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) because they have a hiatal hernia. What is a hiatal hernia?
      • Gastritis
        Gastritis is an inflammation of the stomach lining. Several things can cause gastritis, one of which is chronic bile reflux. Although it doesn't cause heartburn, some of the symptoms are similar to those produced by heartburn, and it's treated in a similar way to GERD, by taking medication to reduce stomach acid.
      • Gastroparesis
        Gastroparesis, also called delayed gastric emptying, is a disorder in which the stomach takes too long to empty its contents. It often occurs in people with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes. This can lead to more pressure against the lower esophageal sphincter, forcing it to relax prematurely, which can then lead to more reflux.

      Continue Reading