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Women who have heartburn in pregnancy have babies with more hair. Ever heard that myth? Or is it even a myth at all?

With many things in life when the facts are not fully known, we can end up with many myths being accepted as gospel truths, and some facts being dismissed as myth. Like many ailments, heartburn and indigestion carry their own fair share of myths, so here we will consider some popular thoughts about heartburn and indigestion and hopefully dispel some of those myths.

Heartburn and indigestion are trivial


Many people - probably those who haven't experienced them - may think that because they're so common it means they're trivial. But they're not. Here are some truths:

  • 1 in 5 people suffering heartburn may experience symptoms every week
  • Heartburn and indigestion can both be very painful and may have an impact on the sufferer’s daily living activities. For example, sleep may be impaired because of the pain.

If I suffer from Heartburn, I won’t suffer from indigestion.


Heartburn and indigestion are conditions with similar underlying causes and similar triggers. In fact,many suffer from heartburn and indigestion interchangeably. Just because these conditions are both associated with stomach acid, it doesn't mean they will feel the same. Here are some more truths:

  • Heartburn is often experienced after eating or drinking, and results when stomach contents (including stomach acid) pass upwards (reflux) into your oesophagus (food pipe). Stomach acid can irritate the oesophagus lining, causing a burning pain.
  • Indigestion is also a symptom most commonly experienced after eating or drinking. Sometimes this can cause your stomach to produce excess acid, which can begin to break down the protective stomach lining. This may result in symptoms different to those of heartburn, such as pain in the lower chest area, in the abdomen and/or feeling very full or ’bloated’. Belching can also be a symptom of indigestion.

Heartburn and indigestion should only be treated with home remedies


There are lots of supposed cures for heartburn and indigestion, and almost anyone you speak to will be quick to prescribe their own home remedies. Some of these work, but some can make the situation much worse, so it is wrong to say that heartburn and indigestion should only be treated with home remedies. Here are some truths about one commonly suggested home remedy:

  • Elevating the head of your bed: This can reduce the chance of heartburn at night as it physically helps keep stomach acid in the stomach, where it belongs, lessening the chance of it coming up into the oesophagus while you sleep.

So, although some home remedies may work, they should never be recommended over seeking medical advice.

Heartburn and indigestion are my fault


Many sufferers may believe that heartburn and indigestion are entirely down to their lifestyle. And while adjustments to diet, losing weight or stopping smoking are positive actions to take, and may help many sufferers, some can still experience symptoms. This is because, Heartburn and indigestion may be linked to other conditions (such as a hiatus hernia) so whilst there are lifestyle factors that can contribute, you shouldn’t dismiss the possibility of it being a symptom of a more serious condition. If you are suffering  from heartburn and indigestion regularly, or have any concerns, you may wish to consider consulting your GP.

So, although there are factors within your control that can trigger heartburn and indigestion, it’s not  always the sufferers fault. Always seek more information.

Heartburn and indigestion can both be treated with the same medicine


Gaviscon Double Action neutralises stomach acid while also forming a protective layer on top of the stomach to help keep the contents in place. So whether you suffer from heartburn, indigestion or both, Gaviscon can provide effective relief. And its effect lasts up to twice as long as antacids.

Hopefully you will have been reassured by our myth-busting. But if you would like to know more about various aspects of heartburn and indigestion, or want to find out more about Gaviscon Double Action and the full Gaviscon range of products, please click here. There are several other articles to read and many more interesting facts.


All information presented is not meant to diagnose or prescribe. Gaviscon Double Action for Heartburn & Indigestion. Always read the label. If symptoms are severe or prolonged you should consult a doctor or pharmacist. Medicines can affect the unborn baby. Always talk to your doctor or pharmacist before taking any medicine in pregnancy.