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What is a natural treatment for a hiatal hernia?

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When a hiatal hernia causes acid reflux or heartburn, natural treatments can be lifestyle changes, which can include eating small meals throughout the day instead of large ones and also not eating too close to bedtime, as noted by Mayo Clinic. Although some natural treatments may help with the symptoms of a hiatal hernia, those that do not respond to these treatments may require either over-the-counter or prescribed medications.

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Some other natural ways to deal with a hiatal hernia are to avoid foods that can cause acid reflux or heartburn, including foods that contain chocolate or tomatoes. Avoiding spicy foods is also recommended. Elevation of the bed head about 5 inches may also be helpful, states the National Institutes of Health's MedlinePlus.

A hiatal hernia is a medical condition in which a section of the stomach moves up through an opening called the hiatus of the diaphragm and into the chest area. Although most hiatal hernias may not cause any symptoms in some patients, it can cause pain in the chest area, heartburn and swallowing problems in others, notes MedlinePlus.

If natural treatments do not alleviate the symptoms, then a doctor can recommend antacids or prescription medications that either reduce or block the formation of acid in the stomach. In certain cases, surgery may be necessary when these other treatment options fail to relieve symptoms or there are complication, such as a strangulated hiatal hernia, states WebMD.

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