Management of Nighttime Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

This can become even worse during pregnancy because of physiological changes like the relaxation of the muscle between your esophagus and stomach, which more easily allows that acid to reverse course. “Small meals and [allowing some time for digestion] before lying flat on your back can prevent acid reflux symptoms that are often worse at night when you lie down,” Dr. Boester explains. Most acid reflux occurs during sleep.

What’s the Difference Between Acid Reflux and GERD?

Your doctor can help create a total treatment approach that works best for you. In conclusion, reflux esophagitis caused sleep disturbances, including an increase in the duration of wake stages, a decrease in the duration of NREM sleep, an increase in sleep fragmentation, and frequent stage transitions.

Your blood sugar already lowers naturally while you sleep, but people with GI issues are more at risk. To keep your blood sugar steady, avoid overly sugary foods all day long, not just before bed.

The rat model for reflux esophagitis used in this study was not related to TLESR, but it was related to mechanical reflux such as strain reflux. Therefore, we could not assess the role of TLESR in sleep disturbances.

1n that sense, nighttime GERD really constitutes a very different, much more serious entity. WO 1ndividuals who have nighttime heartburn are certainly experiencing nighttime gastroesophageal reflux. 1n these individuals, episodes of nighttime reflux tend to have a longer acid clearance time, which means that they have a greater degree of acid mucosal contact for each reflux event.

It disrupts your sleep and it can lead to serious medical problems. Smoking is a double threat when it comes to heartburn. Not only can cigarette smoke irritate your GI tract, but smoking can also relax the esophageal muscles that keep stomach acid where it belongs.

Piling up the pillows isn’t the best way to go about this, though, as pillows are liable to shift. An adjustable base might be a better option for you if you have acid reflux, says Huber. Adjustable bases make it easy to get into a sleeping position that will help mitigate symptoms. 3.

Effects of Sleep

Should you continue to have trouble sleeping or if you do not feel well rested during the day despite being in bed at night, you may want to speak to your doctor. Our future direction is to further explore if medications that improve sleep can be an asset for people with GERD that have symptoms during sleep. In particular, our focus will be on combination therapy of an antireflux treatment plus a sleeping pill, like a melatonin receptor agonist, in improving GERD related symptoms. In a series of studies that we performed and subsequently published, we have been able to demonstrate that the time spent in bed prior to falling asleep is a vulnerable period for gastroesophageal reflux to occur. The longer the time spent awake in bed the greater the esophageal acid exposure experienced.

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