When acid reflux is high, sleeping comfortably at night can be difficult. Although this acid has an essential role in the digestive system, when it rises into the esophagus (reflux), there will be uncomfortable symptoms, such as a burning sensation in the chest (heartburn) and nausea.
The key to controlling nighttime acid reflux symptoms is to keep stomach acid where it belongs, in the stomach. Choosing the correct sleeping position plays a vital role in this. Come on, see the discussion further!
Acid reflux? Try This Sleeping Position
Gravity and anatomy play a significant role in finding relief from the symptoms of high stomach acid at night. During the day, you are most likely standing or sitting, so gravity and saliva quickly return this potentially harmful substance to the stomach when the acid is released.
The esophagus naturally drains stomach acid that rises to the stomach even when upright. The rapid return of acid to the stomach usually shortens the symptoms while minimizing the potential for acid to irritate the delicate lining of the esophagus.
So, what to do when stomach acid rises at night? one effort one can make to choose the correct sleeping position. Here are some recommended sleeping positions:
Sleeping Left Side
Sleeping on your left side reduces the risk of acid reflux rising. The stomach is below the esophagus, making reflux more difficult. If the acid leaks out, gravity can return it to the stomach more quickly than lying on the right side.
Sleep with head support
Sleeping with your head propped up with a pillow higher than your body is also recommended as a sleeping position for acid reflux. It allows the acidic fluids to climb back into the stomach more quickly.
Other Prevention Tips
In addition to choosing the correct sleeping position at night, you can also prevent the appearance of stomach acid symptoms during sleep in the following ways:
- Eat-in small portions but often. Try to eat several small meals throughout the day rather than two or three large meals. Also, avoid eating high-calorie and high-fat foods at night.
- Try different variations of food. Eat more vegetables and oatmeal, which are among the foods that help with acid reflux symptoms.
- Chew more and slowly. That can make the food smoother and easier to digest.
- Wait at least 3 hours after eating before lying down, including at night.
- Improve posture. Try standing up straight to lengthen your esophagus and give your stomach more room.
- Quit smoking, as this habit can irritate the esophagus airways and cause coughing, triggering acid reflux or making it worse.
- Avoid clothes that are too tight around the waist, as they can put pressure on the stomach.
- Try taking a leisurely walk after dinner to help improve digestion and reduce the risk of acid rising into the esophagus.
Discuss the best sleeping position for acid reflux and other tips. If this health problem does not subside, you can talk about this with your doctor.