That burning sensation you feel in your chest after eating is known as acid reflux. Most people might be wondering how to use baking soda for acid reflux.
This is totally not out of place since baking soda can help relieve the symptoms. It is however advisable that people take this remedy with caution.
People dealing with this problem might have tried different medications without the desired results. Let’s find out how to use baking soda for acid reflux and other health benefits of baking soda.
1. What is Acid Reflux?
Acid Reflux is basically a condition where acid found in the stomach moves from the stomach to the esophagus. It is also that burning sensation you feel after eating a meal. There is also an aftermath of a sour taste in the mouth after this happens.
Acid Reflux is also known as heartburn; the feeling of irritation that takes place between your abdomen and your throat. From the research made by the American College of Gastroenterology, it was discovered that at least once a month, over 60 million Americans experience this problem.
It is advisable to seek medical treatment if you experience acid reflux more than two times in a week. You should know that baking soda or sodium bicarbonate can help a great deal with the symptoms.
Symptoms of acid reflux include the following;
- Sensitive teeth
- Bad breath
- Painful swallowing
- Chest pain
- Stomach pain
- Persistent cough
2. What is Baking Soda?
Baking soda is a type of salt that is made up of sodium and bicarbonate ions. It is also known as sodium bicarbonate and appears as a fine powder. Baking soda is majorly used as a baking agent by bakers.
There is however a distinction between baking soda and baking powder. Baking powder is a leavening agent that contains both sodium bicarbonate and acid while baking soda is an alkaline powder.
2.1. Benefits of Baking Soda
Apart from cooking and baking, baking soda can be used in the medical field.
Let’s briefly look at some of its benefits.
1. It helps those with urinary tract infections make their urine more alkaline.
2. It also helps to treat sores and ulcers in the mouth.
3. It can help pacify itchy skin that is a result of the bug’s sting.
4. It is a natural antacid that is used to nullify stomach acid. Therefore, most people use it to treat heartburn.
You should know that baking soda is connected to heartburn relief as it is made up of alkaline pH that helps neutralizes the excessive stomach acid that causes those symptoms.
3. Connection Between Baking Soda and Acid Reflux
The active ingredient that gives baking soda the ability to treat acid reflux is sodium bicarbonate. What makes it effective is the fact that Alka-Selzer contains this bicarbonate.
It is normal for the pancreas to produce sodium bicarbonate that helps protect the intestine. However, baking soda imitates the effects of the process. Sodium bicarbonate helps to relieve the symptoms of discomfort.
It should be noted that when there is a sudden decrease in stomach acidity, it can lead to an acid rebound. The relief can be for a short time while the symptoms associated with the heartburn might increase.
The good news is that baking soda will help neutralize stomach acid. It is also cheaper and more affordable as compared to some OTC medications. For those who distaste the taste of baking soda, there are however OTC medications to help with the symptoms.
Ensure to follow the doctor’s prescription when making use of OTC medications.
4. How to Use Baking Soda for Acid Reflux
You shouldn’t treat acid reflux with baking soda without a doctor’s prescription. If you’re wondering about the right dosage of baking soda to take, seek professional help.
The intake of baking soda to treat heartburn depends on the age of the individual. Bear in mind that baking soda provides temporary relief, and is not used for long-term treatment of the symptoms of heartburn.
- For children, the prescription should be determined by a doctor
- For teenagers and adults, dissolve half a tablespoon of baking soda in a 4-ounce glass of water.
You should know that when you take in excess baking soda, it worsens your symptoms and leads to acid rebound. If the acid reflux persists after two weeks, it is recommended to visit a doctor.
Children under the age of six, as well as pregnant women, should not take baking soda to treat acid reflux.
4.1. Beware of
- Making use of baking soda when you’ve been diagnosed with GERD
- Intake of over 3 1/2 tablespoons of baking soda
- Gulping baking soda solution too quickly
- Taking the required dosage for over two weeks
- Making use of baking soda when on a low-sodium diet spree
5. What are the Side Effects of Baking Soda for Heartburn?
Although baking soda helps to relieve heartburn, it has side effects.
The possible side effects are as follows;
- Stomach upset
When you overuse baking soda, you are at the risk of;
- Heart failure
- Kidney disease
- Potassium blood deficiency
- high rate of stomach acid production
- Increase in sodium levels
- Increase in acid levels
- Weakness of muscles
- Chloride blood deficiency
Other symptoms include;
- Blood in urine
- Difficulty in breathing
- Loss of appetite
- Urinating regularly
- Swelling on feet
- weight loss
6. Baking Soda and Your Health
Those who are suffering from the following medical condition should desist from taking baking soda:
- High blood pressure
- Liver disease
- Kidney disease
Baking soda and apple cider vinegar can be combined to treat this problem. Baking soda can hinder how the body takes in some medication. Therefore, it is advisable not to take it within two hours of taking any other medicine.
7. Other Ways to Treat Acid Reflux
Listed below are the many other treatment alternatives for acid reflux:
7.1. Avoiding Food Triggers
There are food and drinks that trigger acid reflux. The triggers however vary depending on the individual.
The common ones include fried foods, onions, alcohol, chocolate, and garlic. Staying away from the mentioned foods and drinks can help prevent heartburn.
7.2. Keeping a Healthy Weight
When you eat healthily and live healthily, the chances of experiencing heartburn reduces.
7.3. Quit Smoking
Smoking does more harm than good to the human body. It also has a relationship with GERD. Therefore, it is advisable to quit smoking.
7.4. Avoid Overfeeding
When you eat too much or too fast, it makes it difficult for the lower esophageal sphincter to properly close. This LES serves as a valve that is used to split up the food pipe from the stomach and prevents acid from rising.
8. Final Thoughts
Although baking soda can temporarily treat acid reflux, it is not recommended for long-term treatment. It is also crucial to follow a doctor’s prescription for the right dosage. Staying away from food triggers will save you a great deal from any form of heartburn-related issues.
We hope we’ve answered your question on how to use baking soda for acid reflux. Kindly share this information and leave a comment below.