Heartburn is a painful burning feeling in your chest or throat. It happens when stomach acid backs up into your esophagus, the tube that carries food from your mouth to your stomach.
If you have heartburn more than twice a week, you may have GERD. But you can have GERD without having heartburn.
Pregnancy, certain foods, alcohol, and some medications can bring on heartburn. Treating heartburn is important because over time reflux can damage the esophagus.
Over-the-counter medicines may help. If the heartburn continues, you may need prescription medicines or surgery.
If you have other symptoms such as crushing chest pain, it could be a heart attack. Get help immediately.
- Acid Reflux (American College of Gastroenterology) Available in Spanish
- Gastroesophageal Reflux (GER), and Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) in Adults (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) Available in Spanish
- Heartburn (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish
- Heartburn (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
Treatments and Therapies
- Antacids and Acid Reducers: OTC Relief for Heartburn and Acid Reflux (American Academy of Family Physicians) Available in Spanish
- Choosing a Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) to Treat Heartburn, Acid Reflux & GERD (Consumers Union of U.S.) - PDF Available in Spanish
- Turmeric (National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health)
- Globus (International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders)
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Heartburn, Dyspepsia: What's the Difference? (International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders) - PDF
- Possible Increased Risk of Bone Fractures with Certain Antacid Drugs (Food and Drug Administration)
Health Check Tools
- Heartburn (DSHI Systems)
Journal ArticlesReferences and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Have You Heard of GERD? (Nemours Foundation)