Acid reflux is also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease and it is a condition in which the liquid content of the stomach backs up, or refluxes, into the esophagus. Because your stomach contains acids needed to digest the food, when reflux occurs, it can inflame and damage the lining of the esophagus and cause pain or discomfort in the stomach, chest or throat. Dry cough is also one of the symptoms of acid reflux. If you experience acid reflux along with dry cough, here are some easy ways to find relief.
Home Remedies For Acid Reflux
When you’re in a standing position, gravity helps keep the food down. This is why reflux is more likely to occur when you are lying down. The lack of gravity could also allow the refluxed stomach content to travel farther up the esophagus and remain in the esophagus longer, causing a cough. A simple solution to overcome this problem is to increase the elevation of your upper body. Just put blocks under the bed’s feet at the head of the bed, or by sleep with the upper body on a wedge. This makes sure that your esophagus is above the stomach and helps keep the food in the stomach.
Certain lifestyle changes can also help reduce cough caused by acid reflux. Here are some changes you can make:
If you are overweight, get as close to a healthy weight as possible.
Extra weight causes added pressure on your stomach, which can irritate symptoms.
Avoid chewing gum or sucking hard candy, which increases the amount of swallowed air.
Wear loose-fitting clothing and try not to bend after eating.
Stop smoking because it relaxes your lower esophageal sphincter, which lets stomach acid leak into your esophagus, causing pain and coughing.
Foods To Avoid
Acidic Fruits And Vegetables
Most people believe that foods that are acidic should be avoided if you suffer from acid reflux. However, acidic foods are not the cause of acid reflux. Your gastric juices have a pH of 2.0 which is much lower than most of the acidic foods that you may eat. The reason your doctor would advise you not to eat acidic foods is that your esophagus doesn’t have the protective lining that your stomach has. The acids in foods with a low pH could trigger a burning sensation in your already sensitive esophagus.
Fatty food doesn’t generally digest fast. This means they delay the emptying of food from your stomach which increases pressure in your stomach and on the lower part of your esophagus. This, in turn, increases the likelihood of acid reflux. Some of the fatty foods that need to be avoided include red, fried and processed meats, high-fat milk, cheese and ice cream and fried foods, such as doughnuts, potato chips, and french fries. It is also advisable to skip fatty meats and dairy products high in saturated fat as they have been linked to high cholesterol, increased inflammation, and heart disease.
Listen to your body when it comes to spicy foods. In some people, spice can cause or worsen acid reflux and hoarseness. If they seem to exacerbate your condition, choose mild foods and seasonings. Some foods to watch out for are salsa, miso paste, chili, hot peppers, Asian stir-fries and curries, Mexican dishes and sweet spices, such as spearmint and peppermint.
Coffee, Caffeine, And Alcohol
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, alcohol and caffeine, including both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee, may contribute to acid reflux symptoms. Common sources of caffeine include not only coffee but also energy drinks, soft drinks, black tea, chocolate and coffee-flavored ice cream. So try and avoid them if you can or have as little as possible.