If you’ve ever eaten a spicy meal or consumed dinner too fast, you may have felt the horrible effects of acid reflux creeping up on you shortly after. Acid reflux, a condition where stomach acid gets pushed up from the stomach into the esophagus, affects millions of people every day. However, some people suffer more routinely than others.
Acid reflux tends to cause heartburn: a sharp, burning pain in the chest. This feeling typically goes away on its own but can sometimes happen one or more times a day. Routine acid reflux causes more than just minor discomfort — it can be quite dangerous because it causes damage to the esophagus.
While medications are the typical course of treatment for heartburn, we at Graybar Chiropractic are informing our North Carolina patients of another way to potentially curb heartburn for good: chiropractic manipulations. You may be wondering, “What does my spine have to do with my stomach?” Really, the two are more related than you might think.
Understanding heartburn and its causes
Routine heartburn is abnormal and may be caused by things like obesity or a poor diet filled with spicy foods. However, another common cause of heartburn is a hiatal hernia.
The hiatus, a small opening in your diaphragm, allows your esophagus to pass through to your stomach. If you have a hiatal hernia, the upper portion of your stomach bulges through this hiatus. The diaphragm, or the muscle separating your abdomen and chest, pinches the protruding part of the stomach, often leading to acid reflux and heartburn.
Hiatal hernias are commonly caused by weak muscle tissue that allows your stomach to bulge upwards. Large hernias of this type may require surgery to correct, while other cases may just be treated with prescribed medication or antacids.
The link between your stomach and your spine
Unfortunately, if you have a hiatal hernia, medications will not fix the source of the problem, but merely mask the symptoms. This is where chiropractic may be able to help.
When patients visit a chiropractor, they often report that it’s not just their back and neck that experience symptomatic relief. Your chiropractor may be able to readjust your spine to promote total body wellness, including relief from heartburn.
Physical manipulations may be able to provide you with some relief from the symptoms of your hiatal hernia. Strengthening the spinal muscles through stretches, adjustments, and exercises can help take excess pressure off the stomach.
The nerves running down the core of the spine may also be affected when the vertebrae are misaligned, leading to problems within the stomach and diaphragm, including acid reflux. In some cases, spinal adjustments may even lead to a gradual shift of your stomach, back to where it should rest in your abdomen, mitigating the possibility of acid reflux.
The experienced chiropractors at Graybar Chiropractic use Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP), a holistic approach to patient wellness, to ease all kinds of symptoms for our North Carolina patients. If you suffer from acid reflux and heartburn, contact us to see how our chiropractic approach may be able to help you.
Chiropractic BioPhysics, or CBP, is one of the most scientific, researched, and results-oriented corrective care techniques. CBP-trained chiropractors aim to realign the spine back to health, eliminating nerve interference and addressing the source of pain, fatigue, and disease. As with all chiropractic care, CBP is gentle, painless, and non-invasive.