What Does Heartburn Feel Like, a common question

"What is heartburn and what does heartburn feel like?" is a common question among people who are conscious about the burning sensation in their chest after they eat or when they are lying down. Heartburn is a common and normal body phenomena characterized by a burning feeling in the chest just beneath the breastbone.

Mistakenly associated with the heart, heartburn is really connected with the upper digestive tract. It is usually nothing to be heavily concerned about since it can be easily relieved by over-the-counter medicines or natural, home-made ways.

Heartburn happens when the lower esophageal sphincter muscles suddenly opens or relaxes to allow gastric acids to shoot up the esophagus. These acids such as hydrochloric acid move up the food tube and burn the linings thus the burning sensation is felt. Sometimes it reaches all the way up the throat and mouth.

So what does heartburn feel like aside from the burning sensation in the chest? Aside from the burning sensation, pressure or pain in the chest may also be felt. It is usually felt when bending or lying down especially right after eating a large meal. This lasts for several minutes and may extend to a few hours. Heartburn may be accompanied by a burning sensation in the throat or neck. Once the acids move further up, the discomfort goes along with it.

Heartburn may also be characterized by a sour or bitter taste in the mouth or at the back of the mouth. When the regurgitated acid reaches the mouth, it then manifests a sour or bitter taste. Sometimes, when acids stay in the mouth for prolonged periods, it may cause damage in the enamel and may cause tooth decay. A feeling of something stuck in the throat or a lump in the throat may also mean you are experiencing heartburn.

What does heartburn feel like for pregnant women? Heartburn may also be felt by expecting mothers. Pregnant women produce higher levels of progesterone than normal. Progesterone causes the LES muscle to relax thus causing acid reflux. Sometimes, when the pregnancy hits the end of the first trimester, pressure inside the mother's stomach builds up.

The pressure from the growing child may cause the stomach and its contents to be pushed up, thereby allowing gastric acids to be backed up to the esophagus. As to what does heartburn feel like, it is often a sharp, pressured burning feeling in the chest, behind the sternum. Extension of the pain or discomfort may reach the jaws or even the upper arms. Heartburn may also induce nausea and a feeling of being bloated.

What does heartburn feel like as compared to a heart attack? Heartburn is not a heart disease or disorder. It is merely the inappropriate release of the stomach acids into the esophagus. Pain usually starts at the stomach and crawls up to the chest and throat.

On the other hand, heart attack symptoms often include nausea, shortness of breath, pain radiating from the chest going to the left arm, and pain or discomfort in the chest. A combination of these entails that you should go to the hospital to get checked immediately.

Heartburn may easily be relieved by drinking water at the slightest feel. A heart attack, however, cannot be alleviated by simply lying down or drinking water.
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