Monday, May 11, 2009

Heartburn Relief from the Pharmacy

Heartburn is a common condition that plagues just about everyone on occasion. However, for people who find they are suffering from the painful burning more often, heartburn relief becomes an important quest.

The good news is that there are many effective options in heartburn relief today, and some are as close as your local pharmacy. If heartburn is getting you down more often than you'd like, check out these options in relieving those all too familiar heartburn symptoms.


This is usually the first line of defense in heartburn relief, because this medication works fast and effectively for most heartburn sufferers. Antacids work by neutralizing the stomach acid that is responsible for the painful burning sensation typical of heartburn episodes. The most common types of antacids include Rolaids, Maalox and Mylanta. These medications are even safe for heartburn relief during pregnancy in most cases. While using an antacid for the occasional bout of heartburn is a good choice, too much of a good thing can result in diarrhea or constipation. To prevent this problem, look for a medication that contains both magnesium hydroxide and aluminum hydroxide for your heartburn relief.

H-2-Receptor Blockers

Another effective over the counter method of heartburn relief is an H-2-receptor blocker like Tagamet or Pepcid. These medications work differently than an antacid by reducing the acid production instead of neutralizing acid that is already present. The good news about H-2-receptor blockers is that they tend to work for a longer period of time than antacids do. The bad news is that they take longer to take effect, so heartburn relief is not as instantaneous as it is when you swallow down a Rolaids or two. In some cases, heartburn sufferers will take both so they can enjoy instant relief and long term alleviation of symptoms at the same time.

Proton Pump Inhibitors

Medications like Prilosec used to be available by prescription only but now there are over the counter versions of this medication. Proton pump inhibitors actually block acid production, allowing the body to enjoy a long, uninterrupted bout of heartburn relief. This is particularly helpful to those who have suffered frequent bouts of heartburn that have caused damage to the esophageal lining. Blocking acid production with these medications actually gives the esophagus time to heal.

If heartburn if putting a glitch in your life, you don't have to take it lying down. With many good options in over the counter heartburn relief, you can enjoy more symptom free days and nights.


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