Skip to main navigation Skip to main content Skip to footer For Medicare For Providers For Brokers For Employers Español For Individuals & Families: For Individuals & Families Medical Dental Other Supplemental Explore coverage through work How to Buy Health Insurance Types of Dental Insurance Open Enrollment vs. Special Enrollment See all topics Shop for Medicare plans Member Guide Find a Doctor Log in to myCigna
Home Knowledge Center Wellness Library Heartburn During Pregnancy

Heartburn During Pregnancy


Heartburn is common during pregnancy. That's because hormones cause the digestive system to slow down. The muscles that push food down the esophagus also move more slowly when you are pregnant. And as the uterus grows, it presses on the stomach. This can sometimes force stomach acid up into the esophagus.

Heartburn may start at any time during pregnancy. And it often gets worse as pregnancy progresses. Heartburn usually improves or goes away after childbirth.

Heartburn can be a symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). The same measures used to treat GERD can help with heartburn during pregnancy. These focus first on making lifestyle changes, such as changing your eating habits. Some nonprescription medicines are generally safe during pregnancy. But talk to your doctor before you use them.

How is heartburn treated?

Treating heartburn during pregnancy focuses first on making lifestyle changes. These are things like changing what and how you eat. It also focuses on taking nonprescription antacids.

Some doctors may recommend medicines along with lifestyle changes.

The medicines listed below are generally safe during pregnancy. But talk to your doctor before you use them.

  • H2 blockers. Examples are cimetidine (such as Tagamet) and famotidine (such as Pepcid).
  • Proton pump inhibitors. Examples are omeprazole (such as Prilosec) and lansoprazole (such as Prevacid).
  • Sucralfate. Some doctors may recommend this prescription medicine.

What can you do to feel better?

Heartburn is very common during pregnancy. Here are some things that can help.

  • Eat small meals.

    Try 4 to 5 smaller meals instead of 2 or 3 large ones.

  • Cut back on drinks with caffeine.

    These include coffee, tea, and some sodas.

  • Avoid foods that have a lot of acid.

    These include tomatoes and oranges.

  • Avoid foods that make your symptoms worse, such as chocolate, peppermint, and spicy foods.
  • Stay upright after meals.

    Sit up for at least an hour. Or try going for a walk.

  • Try antacids.

    Maalox, Mylanta, Rolaids, and Tums are good choices. Don't take antacids that have sodium bicarbonate, magnesium trisilicate, or aspirin.

  • Take steps to sleep more comfortably.
    • Raise the head of your bed 6 in. (15 cm) to 8 in. (20 cm). Put the bed frame on blocks. Or place a foam wedge under the head of your mattress. (Adding extra pillows doesn't work.)
    • Eat dinner earlier. Try to eat at least 2 hours before bed.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

© 1995-2024 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

Related Links

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) Pregnancy Pregnancy-Related Problems

<cipublic-spinner variant="large"><span>Loading…</span></cipublic-spinner>

Page Footer

I want to...

Get an ID card File a claim View my claims and EOBs Check coverage under my plan See prescription drug list Find an in-network doctor, dentist, or facility Find a form Find 1095-B tax form information View the Cigna Glossary Contact Cigna


Individuals and Families Medicare Employers Brokers Providers

Secure Member Sites

myCigna member portal Health Care Provider portal Cigna for Employers Client Resource Portal Cigna for Brokers

The Cigna Group Information

About Cigna Healthcare Company Profile Careers Newsroom Investors Suppliers The Cigna Group Third Party Administrators International Evernorth

 Cigna. All rights reserved.

Privacy Legal Product Disclosures Cigna Company Names Customer Rights Accessibility Non-Discrimination Notice Language Assistance [PDF] Report Fraud Sitemap Cookie Settings


Individual and family medical and dental insurance plans are insured by Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company (CHLIC), Cigna HealthCare of Arizona, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Illinois, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Georgia, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of North Carolina, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of South Carolina, Inc., and Cigna HealthCare of Texas, Inc. Group health insurance and health benefit plans are insured or administered by CHLIC, Connecticut General Life Insurance Company (CGLIC), or their affiliates (see a listing of the legal entities that insure or administer group HMO, dental HMO, and other products or services in your state). Accidental Injury, Critical Illness, and Hospital Care plans or insurance policies are distributed exclusively by or through operating subsidiaries of Cigna Corporation, are administered by Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, and are insured by either (i) Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company (Bloomfield, CT); (ii) Life Insurance Company of North America (“LINA”) (Philadelphia, PA); or (iii) New York Life Group Insurance Company of NY (“NYLGICNY”) (New York, NY), formerly known as Cigna Life Insurance Company of New York. The Cigna name, logo, and other Cigna marks are owned by Cigna Intellectual Property, Inc. LINA and NYLGICNY are not affiliates of Cigna.

All insurance policies and group benefit plans contain exclusions and limitations. For availability, costs and complete details of coverage, contact a licensed agent or Cigna sales representative. This website is not intended for residents of New Mexico.

Selecting these links will take you away from to another website, which may be a non-Cigna website. Cigna may not control the content or links of non-Cigna websites. Details