Acid reflux or GERD (gastroesophageal reflux) is a medical term for heartburn or acidic burn. It happens around the lower chest area when digestive acids from the stomach move up through the food pipe or esophagus and reach the chest and throat area. The burn is most felt when a person lies or bends down. This is the reason why people with acid refluxes have a hard time picking up something or tying their shoelaces.
The common symptoms of acid reflux are a sore throat, nausea, sour mouth, chest pain and dry cough. This is not a serious disorder but if not treated over a long time could lead to cancer and Barett’sesophagus (metaplasia of the tissue or the lining of food tract).
The main cause of acid reflux is skipping meals and irregular eating habits. Other possible causes could be smoking, pregnancy, obesity, weak sphincter muscles, hernia, consuming spicy foods, genetics, and medications.
Often people who suffer from acid reflux, take antacids. For some, it has become a regular affair. Antacids bring almost instant relief by working on neutralizing the acids in the stomach. But these simply suppress the disorder, they do not cure. There are natural and easy ways to get instant relief and also cure it over a period of time.
In the early stages, Acid reflux is treatable by following certain home remedies. If you are experiencing mild acid burns in the stomach or throat, try natural remedies first. It is very likely that you’ll feel a sense of relief from heartburns, however, if it worsens, consult a doctor and take the required treatment. Along with following home remedies, one should need to change his or her lifestyle to permanently cure the problem of acid reflux.
Here is a rundown on various home or natural remedies to treat acid reflux in the throat.
1. Salt water Gargle
Gargling with warm salt water can reduce inflammation in your throat. The irritation in the throat is mainly caused due to water retention in the cells. Salt water removes the water from the cells and reduces swelling in the throat.
- You will need salt, warm water a glass.
- Take 1 teaspoon Salt.
- Pour warm water into a cup.
- Add ½ teaspoon of salt to the warm water cup and mix well.
- You can use this solution to gargle for 1 minute every morning and evening till you feel better.
Note: Avoid adding too much salt, it can harm your mucus glands.
2. Aloe Vera Juice
Acid reflux can cause dry and sore throat. Aloe Vera gel is extensively used for treating throat related and digestive problems from ancient times. Drinking Aloe Vera juice can soothe your throat and heal the symptoms of acid reflux such as burning sensation in the esophagus lining and irritation in the stomach.
- Extract gel out of an aloe Vera leaf or buy aloe Vera juice from a store near you.
- Mix the gel or juice in half cup of water. (prepare 1 cup = aloe Vera juice + water)
- Drink this 1 cup juice early morning before breakfast.
- You can also drink this juice before each meal of the day.
3. Herbal Tea
It is a well-known fact that Herbal teas offer immense health benefits. They are packed with anti-oxidants and soothing properties, every sip has the power to rejuvenate your mind and body. When it comes to Acid reflux, Herbal teas can do wonders. They help to give you quick relief from burning sensation and other discomforts caused by acid reflux. Below are three different simple herbal tea recipes.
4. Ginger tea
- Cut ginger (3 inches).
- Add ginger to boiling water and boil for about 15 minutes.
- Consume this tea whenever you feel irritation from burning sensation.
5. Chamomile tea
- Boil water in a vessel
- Now add chamomile leaves into the boiling water.
- Turn off the flame and let it cool a bit. Strain it.
- Add a few drops of honey and its ready to drink.
- You can drink this tea before you sleep at night to decrease inflammation.
6. Marshmallow root
Buy marshmallow root from drug stores near you or you can get it online.
- Take 1 tablespoon of marshmallow root.
- Add it to the boiling water.
- Close the lid and let it stay for 2 minutes.
- Strain it into a cup.
- Drink the liquid when you suffer from the irritated throat.
7. Lemon water
Citric acid present in lemon has a unique property to balance the acid levels in the stomach. Lemon water can enhance digestive health and help you get rid of acid reflux problem.
- Cut a lemon into 2 equal halves.
- Squeeze out the juice from the lemon and add it to one cup of warm water.
- Drink this lemon water every morning, 20 minutes before eating anything.
8. Apple Cider Vinegar
The antibacterial property of apple cider vinegar can help to relieve throat pain and inflammation. It also helps in balancing PH levels in the throat and combats acid reflux symptoms.
- Take one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar.
- Add it into warm water.
- Use the solution to gargle every morning.
- Repeat the process until you get rid of throat inflammation.
The powerful antibacterial and antiseptic properties of turmeric keep your throat bacteria free. It also solves digestive problems and symptoms of acid reflux.
- You will need warm water, turmeric powder, and a glass.
- Add 1 teaspoon turmeric powder to warm water.
- You can also use milk as the substitute to water.
- Drink this blend on an empty stomach every morning to soothe your throat.
10. Baking Soda
Baking soda can provide you relief from acid reflux symptoms such as heartburn, sore throat, and gnaw. PH of baking soda is higher than 7.0, Hence it neutralizes the stomach acid.
- You need to have baking soda and a glass of water.
- Add ½ teaspoon baking soda to 1 glass water.
- Stir it well and drink the blend.
Note: Avoid excess consumption of baking soda. Keep the quantity of ½ teaspoon limited to 24 hours. Don’t continue this remedy for more than a week, it might cause vomiting or nausea.
Consumption of fennel promotes digestive health and wards off acid reflux. A beneficial component called as anethole present in fennel is very helpful in calming the gas in GI tract. It can also soothe your throat and reduce inflammation of mucous membranes.
- Boil 1 cup of water in a vessel.
- Take 1 teaspoon of fennel seeds and add it to the boiling water.
- Put off the flame and allow it to seethe for a while.
- Strain it into the cup.
- Drink the warm liquid.
- Repeat this remedy 2 times a day to get relief from acid reflux.
As an alternative, you can also chew fennel seeds after having your meal.
12. Adequate hydration
Dryness in the throat can increase irritation in the throat. So, don’t let your throat dry. Add plenty of liquids into your diet to keep your throat healthy.
- Drink lots of water to about 9 to 10 glasses a day. Drinking hot water is recommended to ease the discomfort in the throat quickly.
- Include hot drinks such as herbal tea.
- You can also add 1 tablespoon of honey to the tea to increase the soothing effect.
13. Lifestyle Changes
A proper lifestyle can cure acid reflux and ease your throat symptoms. In order to make changes in your lifestyle, you have to introspect the foods that you eat. Experiment with foods and identify those which cause acid reflux and worsen the symptoms. Eating sticky foods and liquids might be hard for people who suffer from swallowing trouble. Those people should avoid hard food and prefer soft foods. Everyone doesn’t have common triggers, so it is helpful if you keep track of food that triggers your symptoms and eliminate that food from your diet.
- Eat several meals a day in small quantities.
- Avoid fatty foods, spicy, junk, and acidic food.
- Say no to caffeinated drinks such as hot chocolate, tea, coffee and soft drinks.
- Stay away from consumption of alcohol.
- Don’t drink carbonated water or sodas.
- Avoid juices that are tangy and has citrus content in it.
14. Additional tips
- Start your day with one glass of warm water. It helps in soothing your throat and detoxification process of the body.
- Eat foods which are alkaline in nature.
- Follow a proper time schedule for having meals and sleeping at night. Night awakening can aggravate the problem. Being an early bird will help you get rid of acid reflux.
- Give up smoking and tobacco.
- Relieve your stress through meditation, yoga and other breathing exercises.
- Don’t starve, eat when you are hungry.
- Sleep on the elevated pillow to lower the symptoms while sleeping.
- Avoid drinking water just after or before meals. Instead, leave a gap of 30 minutes between having food and drinking water.
- Raw consumption of Onion, chili, cabbage, radish, and pepper should be avoided.
- Chew gums to get relief from the acid in your esophagus and throat. It stimulates the saliva production in the throat and neutralizes the acid in the esophagus.
- To stimulate digestion process after food, take a short walk. Avoid sleeping within 3 hours after your meals.