A burning sensation in the chest causing discomfort is the heartburn. It occurs usually just below the neck and behind the sternum and upper part of abdomen. Heartburn is named so as it occurs in the chest, a heart area. The medical term for heartburn is pyrosis. It is a very common disorder that causes discomfort and restlessness.



Some important factors causing chest discomfort are:

  • The entry of gastric acidic contents back into esophagus

  • Obesity

  • Pregnancy

  • Increased acid production due some foods such as tea, coffee, chocolate, beverages etc.

  • Hiatal hernia



Main symptom is an irritating pain felt, especially after the meal. Ulceration of mucosa can also occur due to chronic acidic conditions. The symptoms get worse on lying down and can progress to GERD (gastro esophageal reflux disorder).



X-rays, manometry, pH testing and endoscopy is used to confirm the diagnosis of heartburn.



Some simple methods to relieve the condition are:

  • Watch what you eat. A lot of junk food that contains acidic contents can cause burning. Make less use of tea, coffee, sodas, citric juices and add more fiber to your diet to keep your digestive system healthy.

  • Quit smoking. Cigarettes can decrease the efficiency of chest muscles and can precipitate risk of heartburn.

  • Lose excess weight. The excessive abdominal fat can put reasonable pressure on stomach, pushing the gastric contents towards the mouth.

  • Use antacids to neutralize the acidic effect of gastric contents. Fortunately there are a lot of natural things that act as antacids such as almonds, bananas, milk, chewing gum, cinnamon, peppermint oil, and water too.

  • Antacid pill are also available that provide immediate relief.