What Does Heartburn Feel Like?


Quick Answer

According to WebMD, heartburn can cause a burning sensation behind the breastbone, chest pain and a sour, acidic taste at the back of the throat. Certain individuals may also experience the sensation of food being stuck in the throat or chest. It is important for individuals with unexplained pains in the chest to seek immediate medical assistance to ensure a proper diagnosis.

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Full Answer

Mayo Clinic explains that chest pain associated with heartburn tends to become worse when bending over. Heartburn usually occurs following a meal or during night time hours. It is important to consult with a physician if symptoms of heartburn do not improve with over-the-counter medications or if the symptoms are accompanied by nausea, vomiting or loss of appetite.

According to Healthline, heartburn can be caused by a variety of factors that include cigarette smoking, consumption of spicy foods and medications, such as aspirin or ibuprofen. The condition can occur in anyone from time to time, but chronic symptoms can indicate underlying conditions, such as stomach ulcers or gastroesophageal reflux disease. Medications to treat heartburn include antacids and proton-pump inhibitors that work to halt acid production in the stomach. When left untreated, chronic heartburn can cause damage to the esophagus that may increase the risk of esophageal cancer.

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