Smoking and heartburn indigestion

What is the connection between smoking and heartburn? Smoking may be one of the indigestion causes

You know smoking is bad for lungs, for you and those around you too. Did you know that smoking can cause or increase your heartburn? In fact, Smoking can affect the whole digestive system.

How smoking can lead to heartburn?

Why smoking can cause or aggravate heartburn?

What does smoking do to affect your digestive system and how?

Heartburn and smoking facts:

A smoker is more likely to get heartburn than a non smoker.

  • When a smoker gets heartburn, it is more likely to last longer.
  • The valve between esophagus (food pipe) and the stomach doesn't work as it should, that is to stop the acid from getting into esophagus.

  • So for smokers the acid gets easily into esophagus and stays there longer causing burning sensation.
  • Smoking can damage the digestive system.
  • Smoking also may change the composition of saliva; smoker's saliva may contain less amount of bicarbonate.

  • This reduces the ability of saliva to reduce the stomach acid, causing damage to the esophageal lining tissues.
    1. Smoking stimulates the production of stomach acids.
    2. Esophagus and the LES valve (the valve between the esophagus and stomach), can become weak and relaxed because of smoking. Stomach contents, the acids, can rise up into the esophagus if LES is not working properly or it relaxes.
    3. Smoking can injure esophagus which can expose it to more acid reflux and cause more damage. Smoking can cause to block the food pipe.
    4. Smoking causes digestive stress. This can change the way the food is processed and digested. Smokers may have weaker digestion.
    5. Smoking slows the saliva production.

    6. What does Saliva do for digestion?


      • : bathes the esophagus (the food pipe)
      • : lessens effects of acids
      • : Helps wash the acid down to stomach.
      • : ensures protection to esophagus. Saliva contains chemicals that neutralize acids. These chemicals are called bicarbonates. The saliva of a smoker contains less quantity of bicarbonates. Therefore it reduces the capacity of saliva of neutralizes the acids.

    If you are a smoker:

  • Stopping smoking can help in getting rid of heartburn. The time taken will depend on how long you have been smoking. You may get some immediate relief from heartburn as soon as you stop smoking.
  • Reducing the tobacco intake can reduce the time and severity of heartburn symptoms.
  • Remember, smoking and heartburn go together and can worsen your digestive problems.

    Related Pages to visit:

    Eating Late can cause indigestion and heartburn.

    Foods that cause heartburn - causing stomach acid increase.

    Bad Eating Habits - habits related to food choices, meal timings etc.

    Go to causes of heartburn page from smoking and Heartburn

    Go To Heartburn Remedies Home page

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