Gastric Reflux and Stress, How to Treat Yourself Well


Gastric reflux is a very frequent pathology: 10% of adults say they suffer from it once a week, 2 to 5% daily. Stress can often be the cause of gastro-laryngeal reflux. Medical team explains the causes and treatments to be applied in case of stress-related gastric reflux.

Gastric Reflux and Stress, Why Do They Go Together?

Gastric reflux can be directly caused by stress. More often, stress can aggravate gastro-laryngeal reflux. There are many forums on the internet dedicated to stress-induced acid reflux.

What Are The Symptoms Of Acid Reflux?

  • Stress-induced acid reflux has the same symptoms as classic GERD:
  • There is burning in the stomach or under the breastbone. Gastric reflux can also causeĀ chest pain.
  • Gastric reflux also gives symptoms of a sore throat: you have acid reflux in your mouth. It may feel like mucus caused by acid reflux.
  • You may have belching, hiccups or bloating from acid reflux.
  • You may develop a dry cough if stress-induced acid reflux becomes chronic.
  • Other stress-related symptoms may accompany acid reflux. For example, one may experience tachycardia at the same time as acid reflux.

Why Do I Always Have Acid Reflux?

Reflux occurs when some of the stomach contents flow back into the esophagus. It is possible that you have a hiatal hernia or a gap in the cardia (the opening between the esophagus and the stomach) that anatomically favors your gastric reflux.

When this happens occasionally, there is nothing to worry about. But in some cases or at certain times, acid reflux becomes more frequent. If your acid reflux is stress-related, you may have more acid reflux during times of fatigue, for example.

How Can I Treat Stress-Related Acid Reflux?

If you think stress is causing your acid reflux, it’s important to treat the reflux but also to calm your stress.

How Can I Relieve Acid Reflux?

There are anti-acid medications that can be taken to treat gastric reflux that is triggered by stress. Ask your pharmacist for advice.

  • If your reflux is too frequent or too bothersome, consult or teleconsult a doctor. He or she will prescribe effective medications, including proton pump inhibitors.
  • The doctor may also prescribe a relaxing treatment to relieve your stress and thus improve your acid reflux.
  • A doctor who has this specialty may suggest homeopathy for stress-related acid reflux. Nux Vomica is often used for reflux. However, it is best to consult with a doctor to get a prescription that takes into account your stress and your particular situation.
  • Talking with a psychologist, practicing relaxation, yoga or sophrology can help you calm your stress and your reflux.

What to Eat When You Have Acid Reflux?

When we are stressed, we tend to eat a lot of fatty foods to calm down. But this is exactly what promotes reflux. We therefore advise you to pay attention to your diet, while continuing to enjoy yourself. Here’s how to eat well to calm your acid reflux caused by stress:

  • Eat grains, lean meat, vegetables, cooked fruits.
  • Avoid acidic foods, spices, alcohol, coffee and chocolate.
  • Eat in small quantities and slowly: the stomach will develop less acidic juices.
  • Take time to take care of yourself and relax. By calming your stress, you will ease your acid reflux symptoms.

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