Heartburn and Sleep Posture


It has been reported that up to 60 million Americans suffer from heartburn. Heartburn may be caused by eating rapidly and belching up the trapped air. It is the stomach acid content that is brought up with the belch that irritates the esophagus lining.


Leading authorities report that the best side to sleep on if you have heartburn or acid reflux is the left. These authorities report that people who sleep on their right side suffer reflux for longer periods than people who sleep on their left side.


Sleeping on the left side may keep the area of the stomach and esophagus above the contents of the stomach. This sleeping posture along with elevating the head of your bed may offer relief from heartburn and give you a better night’s sleep. This is significant as it can favorably alter your quality of life.


For patients who suffer from heartburn or gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) and sleep disturbances, this can result in the consequential impairments to their normal activities of daily living and work productivity. Other health issues can also be intensified.


What Can I Do To Help Heartburn


If you suffer from heartburn the first thing to do is visit your doctor to determine if there might be other conditions present causing you discomfort. Assuming that there are no other problems and your doctor tells you that it’s heartburn or GERD what can be done to control your heartburn naturally? Some suggestions for an acute flare-up include the following:
  • Peppermint or Anise Candy

  • Drinking Milk

  • Eating a Banana or Some Pineapple

  • Chewing Gum To Stimulate Saliva


To help with GERD or heartburn some recommendations that can be done to assist you in controlling the problem include:
  • Eating Slowly – Try smaller bites of food.

  • Stop Smoking

  • Avoid Certain Foods – Recall what has brought on episodes in the past. This can include spicy food.

  • Elevate the Head of the Bed – Elevation of at least 3-4 inches will help prevent stomach contents to seep into the lower esophagus.

  • Don’t Eat Before Bedtime – Wait at least 2 -3 hours after eating before lying down.

  • Wear Loose Fitting Clothes

  • Avoid Obesity – Adds extra pressure to the stomach when lying down.


These suggestions can help you get a good night’s sleep and avoid damage to the esophagus from GERD. Research has shown the relationship between poor sleep and disease. Many people with GERD have neck and back pain. Set sleep as a priority and improve your overall health and quality of life.


The doctors at Coon Rapids Chiropractic Office have experience with the care and treatment of neck, back and extremity complaints. Call today to make an appointment. (763) 755-4300


The International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine