Can You Get Acid Reflux From Stress?

Gastrointestinal health has an intimate connection with the emotions. Right from telling you about the hunger and to the tougher times of the ulcer, emotions have a proper role to play in the development of acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease. Along with the workload, the symptoms experienced by an individual from acid reflux escalate at a good pace. One of the most frequently asked question about acid reflux is that can it be caused because of stress? And to that question the answer is no.

Can You Get Acid Reflux From Stress?

Can You Get Acid Reflux From Stress?

Answering the relationship between stress and acid reflux is tricky. It is because stress in one individual could be positive resulting in adrenaline rush or shock in who are suffering from acid reflux already. Although it could be the reason behind the increase of acid reflux symptoms, stress may not be the underlying cause of heartburn. It was in the past that stress was related to several gastrointestinal problems such as bowel diseases and ulcers. However, now that we know that bacterial infections are the underlying agent for the cause of such diseases, eliminating stress is a key factor.

Excess weight, alcohol, smoking, and consuming foods that trigger acid reflux are the underlying agents for causing heartburn; excessive stress elevates the symptoms more acutely. According to the experts of gastroenterology, severe stress has an unfavorable effect on patients already suffering with acid reflux symptoms. It is because of psychological stress in the current age, which is leading to heartburn.

Several surveys indicated that people suffering from acid reflux pointed stress is a common factor. However, studies failed to find a connection between stress and acid reflux. Nonetheless, one explanation for this is that stress can increase hypervigilance, which enhances the sensitivity towards physical symptoms. Although the sensitivity remains at lower levels, an increase in stress causes acid reflux.

Is it Measurable?

Researchers carried out a study in 2005 that came out with interesting facts. The study contained 40 patients suffering from acid reflux and chronic heartburn. While measurement was undergoing, researchers asked half of the patients to deliver a five-minute speech as part of inducing stress. Although the acid levels remained the same in both the groups, the group that gave the speech reported an increase in acid reflux symptoms. According to experts, such exercises will not help because stress may sometimes excite the pain receptors that increase the acid reflux symptoms in esophagus pipe.

How to Ease the Pain Caused by Acid Reflux?

Reducing stress is the priority behind solving gastrointestinal problems. Saying that would be easy rather than practicing one. The reason is the stressful environment that we live in, the food that we eat, and the lifestyle that we follow. Choosing the right path along with treatment will help in the production of both stress and symptoms of acid reflux. For instance, adding exercise is an excellent way to boost health and also eliminate stress from the body.

Other methods to ease acid reflux include dietary changes. Cutting down on carbohydrates, tomatoes, spicy foods, alcohol, and quitting smoking help in promoting a healthy digestive process and lessen gastrointestinal diseases. Talking to a therapist is also helpful in some cases if you are facing severe stress. The entire plan of easing out stress and consuming healthy food changes from one individual to other. Therefore, doing things that keep you calm is helpful. For example, it can get as simple as listening to music.

If you have a history of acid reflux, stress could probably elevate the symptoms but not the real cause. Make changes to the food you eat and the way you handle stress. These simpler things in life will give you the best health keeping you away from unwanted illnesses such as gastro esophageal reflux disease.

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 29, 2017

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