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Heartburn: Reducing Pressure on Your Stomach - Topic Overview

Putting pressure on your stomach may push stomach juices into your esophagus, causing heartburn. You can make changes to help relieve your symptoms of heartburn. Here are some things to try:

  • It’s best to eat several small meals instead of two or three large meals.
  • After you eat, wait 2 to 3 hours before you lie down. Late-night snacks aren't a good idea.
  • If you get heartburn at night, raise the head of your bed 6 in. (15 cm) to 8 in. (20 cm) by putting the frame on blocks or placing a foam wedge under the head of your mattress. (Adding extra pillows does not work.)
  • Do not wear tight clothing around your middle.
  • Lose weight if you need to. Losing just 5 to 10 pounds can help.
  • Be careful when lifting and bending. Bending over tends to increase the amount of stomach acid that can get into your esophagus. When lifting, bend your knees—rather than bending over—to avoid putting more pressure on your stomach.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: March 06, 2012
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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