Acidity: Symptoms, Treatment, and Home Remedies


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What is acidity?

Acidity or acid reflux is a very common condition affecting many Indians. This condition is characterized by heartburn felt around the lower chest area, which is caused by the stomach acid flowing back up into the food pipe. Very few people realize the unhealthy eating habits and poor lifestyle choices that cause this condition.

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How does acidity occur?

The food we eat passes down the oesophagus into the stomach. The gastric glands in the stomach create acid which is necessary to digest the food and to kill any germs. Acidity occurs when the gastric glands produce a large amount of acid, more than what is needed for the digestion process. This condition is characterized by a burning sensation just above the stomach, or right below the breastbone (the hollow part).
This condition is very common in India due to the heavy consumption of oily and spicy foods by Indians.

Who is prone to acidity?

People who are prone to acidity include:

  • those who overindulge in alcohol
  • those who are obese
  • those who often consume spicy food
  • those who often consume non-vegetarian food
  • those who take Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs(NSAIDs)
  • women nearing menopause
  • women who are pregnant
  • people who suffer from medical conditions such as diabetes, asthma, hiatal hernia, peptic ulcers, connective tissue disorders, or Zollinger-Ellison syndrome

What are the causes of acidity?

Acidity can occur: 

  • due to unhealthy eating habits
  • due to certain foods consumed in excess
  • as a side effect of  medicines
  • due to existing medical conditions
  • due to other causes such as stress, lack of sleep etc.

Please see the table below for details:

What are the symptoms of acidity? How is acidity diagnosed?

The symptoms of acid reflux include:

  1. burning sensation in the stomach
  2. burning sensation in the throat and heart
  3. difficulty in swallowing
  4. regurgitation
  5. restlessness
  6. belching
  7. nausea
  8. prolonged sour taste in the mouth
  9. bad breath
  10. indigestion
  11. constipation

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If you suffer from the symptoms of acidity you can consult your family doctor or any general practitioner. Based on your case the doctor may ask you to undergo:

  • x-ray of the oesophagus and the stomach
  • An upper gastrointestinal endoscopy which enables the doctor to see the lining of the oesophagus and stomach

What are the complications of acidity?

The complications of acidity include:

  • severe pain in the chest or abdomen
  • excessive vomiting
  • difficulty in swallowing
  • gastric ulcers
  • cancer

What is the treatment for acidity?

Based on your condition, your doctor will prescribe medicines (including antacids) to counter the acidity. If the condition is too severe, he may suggest surgery (Vagotomy) to reduce the production of acid in the stomach.

In The Spotlight

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Patient Experiences

Vinod Newase
Result Oriented Panchkarma Treatment for Acidity
Aatreya Clinic is neat & clean in all aspects. Waiting room is very much spacious as compared to other clinics and the ambiance is also pleasant.   You certainly get positive vibes from Dr Sagar during communication. He will share you tiny information about root cause of disease which you hardly know or might be none doctor has shared it to that level and that is the good quality of Dr Sagar. He will answer all your queries (even silly queries) regarding disease up to your satisfaction.   I was suffering from continuous acidity, indigestion and has problem of obesity so decided to have “Panchkarma” treatment for me. The treatment which I am getting from Dr. Sagar Dr. Nomina is excellent in terms of personal attention, guidance and is result oriented as well. They both were taking care like family members do. The staff is co-operative & friendly. Currently I am feeling much better regarding my health problems  so I have decided to have same treatment “Panchkarma”  for my wife also for her better health.   As we all know, we must have faith & trust on doctor for best possible results & cure, believe me he is that Doctor which will fulfil your expectations. We would like to thanks Dr Sagar & Dr. Nomina for our treatment.   I think once you consult with him, I am sure you will get the perfect family doctor...Read Less
Doctor in this story :Dr. Sagar Pampattiwar
Aatreya Ayurvedic Panchakarma & Infertility Clinic
P T Thomas
Efficient Diagnosing Process for Acidity
1. Friendly, tech savvy doctor 2. Listens to the problems patiently and responds to the queries 3. Does not panic the patient by giving unnecessary advice and medication. 4. Booking process is simple 5. Had advised colonoscopy and endoscopy for me. Even though my bowel was not prepared properly, took efforts to perform the process **** **********. Sincerely appreciate the efforts. 6. One small suggestion to the patients- please carry hard cash also. The card machine was out of order when we tried to swipe the credit card....Read Less
Doctor in this story :Dr. Aravind Gubbi
Gubbis - Centre For Endoscopy, Colonoscopy And Gastroenterology

Questions answered by trusted doctors

Verified User
I have acidity problems often...i feel that my stomach is always full...what can be done for this? Solution?
Dr. Ankur
Ayurveda, Delhi
Simply use bhunimbadi kadha
Dr. Muneeb Ahmed
Ayurveda, Hyderabad
First take vamana karma from an ayurvedic panchakarma specialist then continue with medications you will find lot of relief
Dr. Roopakala
Ayurveda, Bangalore
Your digestion is slow beacause of that you are feeling gassy and bloated after food. Take chitrakadi vati 2 tab 3 times daily after food.  Abhayarista 2tsp twice daily after food with hot water
Dr. Ved Prakash (Vaidya Ji)
Ayurveda, Delhi
You should take praval Panchamrit ras- 125 mg with pomegranate juice 2 tsp  30 min after meal, twice and diet according to dr. Poornima...for 20 days.
Dr. Poornima Kasaragod
Ayurveda, Bangalore
Drink 3 cups of warm water in the morning.
Don't take irritants like tea coffee fried spicy citrus in empty stomach.
Eat on time.
Have buttermilk with hing in the afternoon.
Don't have food with  preservatives .
Drink jeera water after every meal.
Dr. Sunil Suthar
General Physician, Ahmedabad
Respected madam, first of all try to manage proper diet schedule , i mean take a food on time if hunger is der other wise avoid it , then avoid spicy,oily, salty, sour , fomented food , jeera 50gm+ajwain 50gm+ shudhdh hingu 5 gm+ sounf powder 100 gm+ mishri 300 gm+ dhaniya 100 gm+ sphatik bhasma 10 gm + trifala powder 100 gm mix all above combination and take a twice after food with luke warm water , 5 piece of munakka mean kismis + 2 spoon sounf+ 1 pieace of sharkara mix above 3 content in 1 glass of water till night and take it on empty stomach early in the morning ! these are home remedies which you can easily use ! then if it is need to take medicine then try to visit any ayurvedic clinc or hospital for better management !
Dr. manisha joshi
Ayurveda, Mumbai
Eat food in small amounts. Especially in the evening eat early and do eat solid food. Make sure you do not sleep in afternoon. Also make sure you keep at least 3 hours gap between dinner and sleep. Take regular walk. Also eat alkaline food to reduce acid..
Verified User
I have bloating problem due to acidity. Could you suggest good medicine. I'm having this problem from longtime
Dr. Kumar Parth
Gastroenterologist, Bangalore
Hi, follow some basic life style changes:Stop tea, coffee, spicy food. Take your timely. Avoid cabbage, capsicum, citrus fruits ( for a while). Don't drink water with food, take after 40 min. as much as you want thereafter. Don't liye down immediately after food. Finish your night meal by 8.30 pm maximum. Always keep your stomach 1/4 th empty. You can divide your meal into 5-6 times a day. Avoid wearing tight pants ( it compress your belly/ stomach). Avoid the particular food, which you observed that after taking you feel bloating, fullness, upper abdominal pain/ discomfort, reflux symptoms etc. Take tab. PANTODAC DSR (1-0-1) half an hour before meal for 7 days.
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Did you know?

Women suffer more

Women suffer from acidity more than men. It could be because women are more prone to anxiety and depression than men.

Body mass index

Body mass index seems to be directly proportional to acidity. Higher BMI is associated with more frequent and more severe heartburn and regurgitation.

Young people are complaining of acidity more

Due to a sedentary lifestyle, high consumption of meat, low consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables are significant risk causes of heartburn among the younger populace.

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Home Remedies

Take Coconut Water

Coconut water is known to soothe the system if you suffer from acidity. Take atleast two glasses per day.

Take Watermelon juice

Watermelon juice is great to counter acidity. You can have a glass of watermelon juice for breakfast each day.

Avoid Foods That Trigger Acidity

Avoid all forms of spicy foods if you are prone to acidity. Certain foods such as citrus fruits, milk, coffee, tomatoes, foods high in fat content can give rise to acidity. Avoid these trigger foods.

Maintain a Regular Eating Time

Keeping long intervals between meals is another cause for acidity. Have small but regular meals.Have your dinner at least three hours before you head off to sleep.

Cut Down on Smoking and Drinking Alcohol

Excessive smoking and drinking is known to increase acidity. Consider cutting down on these habits.

Take Lemon Juice With Sugar

In a glass of water squeeze half a lemon. Mix half a teaspoon of sugar in it. Sip this drink atleast an hour before your lunch This will reduce your uneasiness.

Take Basil leaves

You can munch on a few basil leaves when you feel discomfort in your stomach due to acidity. Alternatively, you can boil a few basil leaves in a cup of water. Let it cool. Then sip on this drink frequently.

Take Buttermilk

if you notice symptoms of acidity arising after a spicy meal, drink a glass of buttermilk. Buttermilk contains lactic acid that normalizes acidity in the stomach.