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How to control your indigestion

How to control your indigestion
Indigestion can be both painful and can prevent you from enjoying life. Here are some tips on controlling this common digestive problem
Indigestion is something no one wants to struggle with. It can ruin mealtimes and prevent you from enjoying your life. 
This common digestive problem involves discomfort or pain in the upper abdomen provoked by eating, sometimes accompanied by heartburn, bloating, nausea and an acidic taste in your mouth. An excess of stomach acid is the main cause and there are a number of lifestyle factors that play a role, including eating too fast, being overweight and drinking too much alcohol. Tackling bad lifestyle habits will help to alleviate the problem, and there are other positive steps you can take.
 

Finding relief 

There are many different remedies to help relieve indigestion. Credit: PeopleImages
There is no universal cure for indigestion. For many people, instant relief from indigestion can be given by medicines that counter acid in the stomach, such as simple antacids (aluminium hydroxide and magnesium carbonate) and proton-pump inhibitors. It is often a question of trying different approaches and finding out what works best for you
"It is often a question of trying different approaches and finding out what works best for you"
Ginger is a natural remedy that has been used for centuries to combat indigestion, ginger can help to calm intestinal spasm and stimulate digestive secretions. It is best taken as a tea, which can be in a powdered form or using slices of ginger root.
Tea, made from caraway seeds or adding a couple of drops of the oil to a glass of water, may offer relief. You could also try a tea made from a combination of caraway and peppermint, which may work even better than either ingredient alone.

Controlling your indigestion 

Controlling your indigestion can help you enjoy mealtimes again. Credit: AnnaStills
Suffering from indigestion doesn’t have to ruin mealtime for you. Knowing how to control indigestion can have you enjoying your food again. Here are some useful tips for controlling indigestion:
The food and drinks you put into your body can cause indigestion, so try to avoid alcohol, fizzy and caffeinated drinks. Smoking also can trigger indigestion, as can spicy or greasy foods. This doesn’t mean saying goodbye to your favourite foods and drinks, but it does mean just putting some thought into when to have them.
"This doesn’t mean saying goodbye to your favourite foods and drinks, but it does mean just putting some thought into when to have them"
How you eat can have a big impact on your stomach too, so try to eat slowly with your mouth shut. This prevents you from swallowing too much air, which prevents the build up of gas in your stomach. Try to avoid eating too close to sleeping too, to give your body time to digest your meal.
Doing anything extremely energetic after a meal may cause indigestion also, as your body needs more time to digest your food. However, excess weight can cause pressure on the stomach so try to stay active in your daily life. Pressure on the stomach can be especially triggering of indigestion, so avoid tight waistbands too.
 

Talk to your doctor 

If your symptoms are persistent or worsen, see a doctor. Credit: unomat
If simple measures don’t solve the problem, see your doctor in case there’s an underlying condition that needs treatment.
Your indigestion could be a peptic ulcer, as they have symptoms in common with indigestion.
"Seek immediate medical advice if you develop worsening or new symptoms"
Seek immediate medical advice if you develop worsening or new symptoms. These symptoms include consistent or bloody vomit, black tarry faeces, difficulty swallowing, unexplained weight loss or extreme fatigue. This could suggest something like hiatus hernia (the upper part of the stomach being squeezed into the chest, through a gap muscle of the diaphragm) could be responsible, which may require surgery or medication.
Banner credit: Indigestion (dragana991)
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