Thursday, September 14, 2006

holy reflux, batman

People kept warning me that along with closeness to your due date, the third trimester also delivers lovely gifts such as heartburn and acid reflux.

I didn't actually realize that by acid reflux you meant "clawing at your chest, having to get up at 4am because your esophagus is being burned from the inside, uncontrollable burping all day at work, can't drink decaf coffee anymore" type of acid reflux.

It's been lovely, really.

I'd had a few instances of heartburn before last night, but this was just ridiculous. I'm hoping that this will not be a regular occurrence, and I plan on using Dr. Google to let me know what types of foods I should avoid and whether I should try getting up or drinking milk, or what I can possible try the next time I am unable to lie down because of the burning.

Advice? It was just the one time, right? It isn't going to happen again? Because holy reflux, I am only 25 weeks! There are (hopefully) a lot of weeks to go!


Ninotchka said...

I didn't have it too bad but two of my sisters never went anywhere without their Tums (ask your Dr., though, to make sure). Did you know that Latinos say that if you have a lot of heartburn your baby will have lots of hair? It was true for my sister. But all my girls had plenty of hair and I didn't get heartburn that there you go!

chatty cricket said...

I didn't get it with Lady (nothing that I couldn't deal with, which we know is basically a mild-to-nothing case since I loves me my medications!), but this time around? With Little Mister? It's horrible! Drinking WATER is enough to trigger it. Let me repeat: WATER. Ouch.

My Doc has me on Zantac, it's definitely helping but I have to keep up or it flares up on me and it's agony! Talk to your doc, because it's more than just uncomfortable, it can do some damage.

Nino, it would be cruel if this does mean that my Little Mister will have tons of hair because my Lady (who was gestated without a real heartburn episode) was born with nary a strand and didn't get any until she was close to one year!

Phantom Scribbler said...

Uh. Yeah, the third trimester is fun fun fun. I got to the point where the only thing I would willingly eat was ice cream.

OK, there are worse things than only eating ice cream.

But the waking up in the middle of the night because your stomach is creeping up your throat? One of those reasons why I don't want to have a third kid.

donna said...

Sing it, sister! This is by far the worst part of pregnancy for me. My doctor said Tums are ok, but for more long lasting help, Pepcid is also safe for the baby. I also try to not lay down for at least a couple hours after eating if I can avoid it. But sometimes those late night snacks just can't be avoided and I end up sleeping propped up in bed.

mc said...

Yeah, avoiding laying down after eating was the only thing that worked for me, which was especially difficult since ALL I wanted to do after dinner was lay down!

Angry Pregnant Lawyer said...

OK, Phantom's comment is forcing me to leave my house in my Shamu state to get a milkshake.

Other than that, all I can do is offer sympathy. My heartburn/acid reflux was always worse in the 2nd trimester than in the 3rd, if that gives you hope. In my 2nd trimesters, I went through a ton of Tums/Maalox tablets.

Kris said...

Oh, you poor thing! I had reflux with John starting in my second trimester. One night it got so bad it came up to my throat, and left my throat sore for a few days. I didn't know reflux got that bad. The midwife put me on zantac, but we still had to raise the head of the bed. I couldn't eat the last few hours before bed (just very small amounts). After I had John it went away immediately. I forgot the zantac at home and I ended up never having to take it again. So that's something to look forward to!

Maalox might soothe it. Do you have a recliner at home? Sleep in it if you can even if just for tonight. Or on a bunch of pillows.

You really have my sympathy because I know how bad it feels when it gets out of control. Check in with your doctor. Feel better. :)

Rev Dr Mom said...

Try to avoid acidic foods, and maybe spicy foods; trial and error will tell you if there are things that make it worse. And sleeping slightly propped up helps, along with tums or rolaids.

Pizza and chili were the two foods I just couldn't eat in my third trimester.

Good luck; it is an awful feeling to wake up with reflux.

nancy said...

Oh dear, already? Mine was sooooo bad. I lived on Tums. Upright for sleeping, but it was with me constantly.

A friend told me it disappeared immediately after the birth. I was skeptic. It was true. INSTANT relief, and I had it even while pushing.

Should we all buy stocks in Tums now?

Maribeth said...

Small meals, low acid foods, and do not eat anything for several hours before bed. If you waken with reflux eat saltines. They puff up in your stomach. I think milk isn't a great idea, although we all think it is, but it actually gets the gastric juices flowing.Good luck!

Yankee, Transferred said...

Nothing to add but sympathy.

bethiclaus said...

I had crazy bad heartburn with Alliclaus. People were all, "You're baby will be very hairy."

And she was. But guess what? She's Mexican. And I don't know many bald Mexican babies. Now, people come up to me and say, "Did you have bad indigestion?" Um, yes. Also, I was pregnant.

Anyway, the big thing that helped me was to prop my head up while I slept. It kept some of the churning acid down.

liz said...

What Yankee said.

mbbored said...

My sister had no heartburn with her first child and he was bald until he was 18 months old. With her second, her heartburn was terrible, and my mother kept telling her that the baby would have lots of hair. My sister brushed it off as an old wive's tale, until my niece was born with a huge head of hair. Unfortunately, I don't know what she did for her heartburn.

Mrs. S said...

I just happened to meander over from your comment on Emily's site, but it seems my arrival is timely.

I don't know if anyone else suggested it (I skimmed, but didn't read all the other comments) but chewable calcium works AWESOME, and you can have more of those than you can Tums because they don't have any actual 'drugs' in 'em. I have a big bottle by my bed, they're mint flavored, and they seem to work pretty much instantly! I adore them, and I would not have made it this far (34 weeks! ack!) without them.

mamatulip said...

Oh good grief -- I feel for you. The heartburn I had with both my pregnancies was brutal. I kept thinking I was going to burn holes through my throat.

What helped for me was staying away from acidic things -- citrus fruits and juices, tomato sauce, etc. -- and also staying away from milk. I was told by someone that milk would help coat my throat and stomach, but then my doctor told me that the milk actually curdles due to the acid, which is why I felt like I was going to hurl after drinking milk.

Tums helped, and so did plain ol' bread -- the bread helped absorb the acid in my belly -- I used to eat a few slices when it got really bad. Hope this helps!!

amygeekgrl said...

i've had some bad heartburn this time around and preferred not to go on meds (like i did when pg w/ ava), so i've done a fair bit of research. one thing i found that helped me a lot is to NOT drink with my meals. this means you need to drink your water around your meals to still get enough, but NOT while you are eating.
another thing that helped is papaya enzymes. you can get them in chewable pill form at any natural foods store.
others have had luck w/ raw almonds. that worked for me for a while.
my midwife sells a liquid calcium/magnesium that i've taken as a last resort. it tastes nasty but does the trick.

hope it was just a one-time occurence for you. :) i know how miserable it can be.

amygeekgrl said...

oh yeah, one more thing that works is to chew spearmint/peppermint gum! guess it makes the acid stay down because you are swallowing a lot. hope that helps!

KLee said...

I *found out* I was pregnant because I had such awful heartburn. A friend told me that she'd had a terrible time with it when she was pregnant, and I did a home test -- and lo and behold!

The old wives' tale about the hair was also true in my case. Eveyone told me that Offspring would be hairy since I was having such awful heartburn. I scoffed at the time, but she looked like a Q-tip at birth! SO MUCH HAIR! Maybe there's something to that old wives' tale after all. Everyone else seems to relate the same outcome.

I ate lots and lots of Tums, brank a lot of milk. My trigger food to avoid was very spicy stuff and tomato sauce. There's something about tomato sauce that set me off -- way too acidic.

Feel better! Try those chewable calcium supplements -- they can't hurt, and if they help, you're building up calcium!

ccw said...

It's hard to say if it will go away or become your new worst friend.

I had awful heartburn for months with all 3. Food changes did not help but cutting down on coffee or carbonation was helpful.

I slept with tums and took them with me everywhere. Sleeping slightly inclined also helped.

Karyn said...

Oh honey.

I had heartburn so badly with both kids that I thought I could probably breathe fire if I had enough energy to put into the effort.

Tums. They are the 'safe' antacid I believe, but check with your doctor. Also, your physician might be lovely and kind and sympathetic and prescribe you some Ranitidine (Zantac) in low doses which TOTALLY helps the searing burning hideous nauseating pain and the burping too.

A couple pillows. Sip water. Limit fried / acidic / fatty foods certainly before bedtime.

Good luck... hang tight...

purple_kangaroo said...

I had bad heartburn. 24-hour burning-up-the-esophagus (and sometimes burning the other end too!) bad. With all three pregnancies. With the second two, it started pretty much the day I got pregnant. They weren't that hairy, any of them.

What helped for me: Cutting down on chocolate and coffee (I know, you didn't want to hear that, did you?), drinking lots of water, nighttime maalox, baking soda mixed with water (the dosage is on the package), and zantac. Zantac taken regularly was helpful for me, but I couldn't just take it "when I needed it." When I took it regularly, I realized I probably "needed it" more often than I thought, anyway. There are prescription things that are supposed to be more effective, too, and there's also a Bowen move (and maybe a chiropractic manipulation, too) that helps somewhat.

Sometimes (and this seems counterprductive, but for some reason it works) drinking tea made of 1 part (can't remember if it was a teaspoon or a tablespoon) of apple cider vinegar with 2 parts honey, diluted in hot water, can help. I don't know why, but I tried it a few times and it did seem to help. Supposedly, from what I read, sometimes it's a lack of acid rather than too much acid in the stomach that causes too much acid at the wrong times . . . like maybe your body is trying to compensate for food that's not digesting well enough or something, I don't know.

Anyway, you have my full sympathy. Uck.

Anne Glamore said...

Yep-- bought the huge bottle of fruit flavored Tums, carried it with me, and the minute the babies were norm, my stuffy nose and reflux disappeared.

Jenny Rough said...

I had acid reflux once during a really stressful trial at work. But here is the weird thing -- it happened right after I experienced excruciating abdominal pain in my right side. Were you two incidencts close together? I wasn't pregnant, so who knows. My doc said avoid eating spicey foods and avoid eating late at night.