Individuals can alleviate hernia pain by eating two to three hours before bedtime, avoiding foods that trigger heartburn and elevating the head of the bed, suggests Mayo Clinic. Antacids and drugs that reduce acid production help reduce pain associated with heartburn.
Lifestyle changes also help alleviate hernia pain, such as losing weight, avoiding alcohol and quitting smoking, explains Mayo Clinic. Spicy and citrus-based foods should be avoided to reduce the amount of acid produced in the body. Chocolate and tomato-based foods also cause problems in some patients. Meals should also be smaller and more frequent instead of just a few large meals each day. Over-the-counter proton pump inhibitors such as omeprazole or lansoprazole help alleviate hernia pain in some patients.
A hernia often causes pain in patients because food and acid back up into the esophagus causing heartburn, according to Mayo Clinic. A hernia occurs when portions of the stomach push through the diaphragm. In many cases, small hernias heal on their own and cause very little or no pain. Larger hernias often need to be surgically fixed to eliminate pain and medical complications.
During surgery, medical professionals reposition the herniated tissue while the patient is under general or local anesthesia, explains WebMD.