So if you are suffering from any kind of psychosomatic or physical, then it’s well worth getting cleared up, so that it’s not detracting your attention from your relationship.
Picture to show how the pain of acid reflux can be distracting
Now this may sound like strange thing to say, but psychosomatic problems are generally caused by stress, and there can be no greater source of stress in life than your relationship!
Equally, it may well be that the stress in your life is impacting your relationship adversely, by detracting attention from your partner, and not allowing you to invest your time and energy fully into the relationship.
In any event, stress reduction techniques are numerous and widespread these days, the latest craze being mindfulness, which is defined as the intentional, accepting, and non-judgmental focus of one’s attention on emotions, thoughts and sensations in the present moment.
As I understand it, this is a kind of meditation derived from Buddhist meditation practice including Vipassana. Certainly it’s being used widely to reduce the impact of emotional conditions such as anxiety, and it has indeed gained a lot of popularity worldwide is a way of handling emotions.
Now in my experience, acid reflux and heartburn are generally caused by excess stomach acid that is the result of anxiety or conflict, so on the face of it mindfulness practice would certainly looked like a good cure for these particular problems,
I’m also struck by the observation at this point that mindfulness would be a very good way of becoming more conscious to whatever is going on for you in your relationship.
And therefore it is not only going to serve you in reducing the anxiety that manifests as acid reflux and requires some kind of acid indigestion remedy, but it’s also going to serve you in increasing a sense of connection with your partner anyway.
Another experience that I’ve observed many times in my men’s groups is that when men seek to avoid the feelings associated with some extremely discomforting experience, memory, feeling or belief system, they often block out the pain of the emotion, which makes it worse.
My suggestion to them is always to open up to the emotion, and to feel it, and by doing that, change their relationship with the causative factor.
Now this sounds like a good way of actually improving the quality of your relationship as well, because experiencing everything the relationship brings can certainly improve the quality of connection with your partner.
A lot of people do experience anxiety around relationships, and it does often manifest as heartburn, acid indigestion, acid reflux, or some other discomfort in the area of the stomach.
Traditionally, the stomach area is associated with the power centre of the body, and when you feel that you lack power in your relationship, the symptoms are most likely as a psychosomatic response in the body in this area.
So as well as meditation and mindfulness training, it’s possible to use relaxation to alleviate the symptoms, and it is also possible to use a holistic approach to your life.
This is encapsulated very well in Heartburn No More by Jeff Martin, who has managed to combine together a system dietary, stress reduction, and lifestyle changes, that address all of the issues that I’ve spoken about above.
Picture to show how diet can impact your stress and indigestion
So for example, dietary changes would include reducing the amount of food you consume that you know stimulates any allergies, or sparks off excess acid production.
Lifestyle changes might include drinking less alcohol or consuming less tobacco, and perhaps giving up a sedentary lifestyle in favour of one that contains a defined exercise program.
It’s also wise to check with your doctor to ensure that you have no underlying medical conditions such as hiatal hernia, or Helicobacter pylori infection.
Having said all that, ultimately it’s your responsibility to adopt this dress reduction measures that can reduce stomach acid production, and no amount of advice from your doctor, or prescription medication from the pharmacy, will impact on the underlying causes of acid reflux and heartburn.
Having said all that, it’s sometimes very necessary to take temporary dose of prescription medication to obtain immediate short-term relief when the pain of acid production is too great to tolerate.]
The most effective and most highly recommended medication for this purpose are hydrogen blockers like Zantac and Tagamet, which have been well demonstrated over many decades to be effective and safe medications for this purpose.
The more modern medications such as omeprazole ( commercially sold as Prilosec and Losec) are extremely effective, but have an unfortunate effect when you stop taking them, which is that the acid production increases far beyond what it was before you were taking them, thereby making the symptoms worse.
In years to come, this is undoubtedly going to be one of the major issues with people who wish to come off these medications, perhaps because they’re experiencing side-effects, or perhaps because they simply wish to achieve a more holistic way of life.
For that reason, I recommend hydrogen blockers rather than proton pump inhibitors.