Relaxation Techniques for Dealing with Acid Reflux - dummies

Relaxation Techniques for Dealing with Acid Reflux

By Patricia Raymond, Michelle Beaver

How does relaxation help with acid reflux? The link isn’t iron clad. However, relaxation does promote overall health, and if you improve your overall health your acid reflux may decrease.

Here are some basic tips for relaxation:

  • Turn off the television when you’re trying to sleep. Studies are clear that the brain does not “sleep” as well when the television is on, even if it’s on mute.

  • Keep your bedroom as dark as possible when you’re sleeping.

  • Exercise. As mentioned, exercise helps people feel more relaxed.

  • If you’re feeling upset, take a break from the situation. Even if it’s a high-pressure board meeting, maybe you can get away with a quick trip to the restroom. Breathe deeply, close your eyes, and remind yourself that whatever is happening will probably improve. Examine whether you’re making a mountain out of a mole hill and feeling unnecessary stress.

  • Keep your environment as relaxing as possible. Do you like soothing colors? Soothing music? Soothing foods? Do certain people make you feel stressed out? Avoid those people! Seek out what makes you feel peaceful.

You can also practice relaxation techniques. Deep breathing is about as simple as it gets. Try this: Stop for a moment. Close your eyes. Inhale deeply and slowly, engaging your stomach as though you’re pulling the air up from your stomach, instead of just engaging your chest. Pause. Release.

Take another deep, slow breath. Pause. Release. Take another deep, slow breath. Pause. Release. To see whether you’re doing this correctly, place a hand on your belly and a hand on your chest. Your belly should move when you take a deep breath, but your chest and shoulders should not.

You know it’s working when you feel calmer. If you don’t feel calmer yet, breathe deeper, slower, and for longer. If you still can’t calm down, consider consulting medical help.

If you’re interested in taking it another step, you can practice meditation.

There’s not a direct correlation (yet, anyway) between high stress and frequent reflux, but again, if you improve your overall health, you’re less likely to have acid reflux. So, de-stress. But don’t stress about it.