In many instances, most of the times we confuse chest pain with the Heart Attack (Myocardial Infarction). But, do you know there is a common entity that causes chest pain/heart burn.! Yes..that is none but acidity (Pyrosis).




Even though it is not a medical emergency, needs quick relief due to severe burning sensation it produces. Therefore, awareness of causes, symptom and control measures help us to get relief to some extent.


Acidity Means !!


Acidity is a medical condition (but not emergency) which is caused due to excess production of acid produced by the glands of the stomach (Pylorus).


It occurs due to excessive secretion of the Hcl (Hydro Chloric Acid – which is needed for digestion and to kill harmful bacteria). There are many causes and factors that trigger excess acid release.


How Does Acidity Occurs (Pathophysiology)



In Normal Person


Food Intake


Food enters the stomach through the oesophagus (food pipe)


Hcl production is normal and no burning sensation.


In Acidity Person


Food Intake


Food enters the stomach through the oesophagus (food pipe)


Excess Hcl production and acid reflux (backflow of Hcl into the oesophagus)


Causes (Etiology)


Predominant causes are…


  • Spicy and oily food
  • Unhealthy and excessive food intake
  • Consumption of food just before sleeping
  • Excessive stress
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Alcoholism and smoking
  • Stomach disorders like peptic ulcers, gastrointestinal reflux, and stomach tumours.
  • Medications like NSAIDs (Non Steroid Anti-inflamatory Drugs)


To Whom Acidity Risk is High?


  • Chronic Alcoholism and smoking
  • Obesity
  • Women (Menopause)
  • Pregnancy (due to compression of the Diaphragm)
  • Some medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, connective tissue disorders, hiatal hernia, zollinger-ellison syndrome.

Signs and Symptoms




  1. Burning sensation in the stomach (Heart Burn) and throat
  2. Indigestion
  3. Belching
  4. Anorexia (lack of appetite)
  5. Dysphagia (difficulty in swallowing)
  6. Difficulty in food intake
  7. Restlessness
  8. Nausea
  9. Sour taste in the mouth
  10. Bad breath
  11. Regurgitation (backflow of food from stomach into oesophagus)
  12. Constipation.




Mostly symptoms of heartburn, belching, and sour taste in the mouth are experienced frequently by the patient and if you consult gastroenterologist, they advise following medical tests….

  1. X-ray of the oesophagus and the stomach
  2. An upper gastrointestinal endoscopy (to see the lining of the oesophagus and stomach).



Acidity is treated with some medicine efficiently, and some times for unresponsive cases surgery is scheduled.




Antacids: Digene, drugs containing calcium, aluminum, and magnesium.

H2 (Histamine) receptors blockers: Famotidine, Rantidine, Nizatidine, and Cimetidine.

Proton pump inhibitors: For severe cases.




Vagotomy: Surgical removal of the vagus nerve to reduce acid release.


Home Remedies to Treat Acidity



  1. Consume bananas, cold milk.
  2. Eat cumin, aniseeds, cardamon, mint leaves, cloves and ginger.
  3. Eat more vegetables and fruits.
  4. Don’t consume spicy and junk food.
  5. Avoid stress and anxiety.
  6. Don’t eat pickles.
  7. Sleep well.
  8. Avoid NSAIDs.




If neglected for long time without treatment, acidity may leads to many complications like

  • Excessive vomiting (Hyperemesis)
  • Difficult in swallowing (Dysphagia)
  • Severe pain in the chest or abdomen
  • Gastric ulcers and cancer.


How to Prevent Acidity?


  1. Habituate healthy eating habits
  2. Adequate sleep
  3. Practice relaxation exercises
  4. Refrain from smoking and alcoholism.


Take Home a Message


Healthy living is a good pavement for the productive life. So, try to give your body the best nutrition possible. Live stress free and relaxed !!