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I'm a female, 37 years old and have been on 30mg lansoprazole for about 10 years due to gastritis although I would like to add that I had never had heartburn and I'm not over weight.
A year ago, I was going through a very, very stressful time and started experiencing acid reflux. I also had a pain in between my shoulder blades and a pain under my right rib. After seeing many doctors and eventually a gastronentologist, who performed an endoscopy I was diagnosed with a 4 cm hiatus hernia. The gastroentologist said that when we are stressed out, our stomach produces more acid, which was why I was having acid reflux. My hernia had apparently been there a while and I had not shown any symptoms until now.
Ok, so what do I do to fix it? Straight away the gastroentologist put me on 40mg nexium instead of lansoprazole and told me what to eat for the next 14 days. She said that as soon as the stress stopped, my symptoms would stop. The amount of pain I was in and discomfort made this very hard to believe as I wanted it gone there and then. I went back 2 weeks later and nothing had improved. She suggested surgery! I said I would think about it and get back to her. I did some research and the surgery really scared me and I started to feel depressed as I felt this was my only option. That's when I found this forum. Yes it helped for research and I would check the forums everyday and end up feeling worse! I went to my gp for antidepressants who couldn't give them to me as there is a link between them and hernias! His words to me were, Nancy don't have the surgery, I wouldn't!
Thats when something switched inside me. I was the only one who get better. This was part of my life forever now. I went straight to holland and Barrett. I bought varies treatments from aloe Vera juice to DGL licorice. My gastritis was gone in 5 days but I was still experience slight heartburn. Every morning I would pull my hernia down through massage. I invested in a wedge pillow and only stuck to foods that I knew were alkaline.
It was probably about a month later when I couldn't remember the last time I had heart burn! I never felt so great. I'd lost weight because of my diet. I was eating so much but because it was all good stuff I wasn't putting on weight. My skin was amazing!
I started to introduce acidic foods very slowly. I'm sorry but I love my takeaways. If the kids had a mac Donald's I would try a couple of fries and guess what, no acid. So I just tried little bits of food to see what I could and couldn't tolerate and I'm still learning now.
A year on I can basically eat what I want. Chocolate is ok. Chocolate digestives are a big no and so are peanuts. I can eat Chinese and even a couple of slices of pizza. I don't feel down about my hernia any more. I believe I had to lower the level of acid produced in the stomach and let it heal and that's what did the trick.
I would say say to anyone that has just been diagnosed with a hiatus hernia, to give it time. I remember the doctor said it was stress which was causing the acid, so in my mind I did everything to avoid stress, I kept busy doing what I wanted to do. My husband supported me and even he can't believe the difference as he thought surgery was the only way forward. Not a lot of people post positive posts as most people on forums are seeking help and answers. That's why I have posted this a year on. Apparently hiatus hernias are very common and people don't know they have them. It's only when something happens in their lives like it did with mine that they show symptoms.
Anyway goodluck to any one reading this. You may be feeling down.... you can make it better but it will take time.
Also one of the best things I did when I decided what I had to do was turn off all notifications for this forum. I stopped the research, stopped receiving emails as it only bought me down. Only positive thoughts from now on!
My diet to reduce acid while it healed included
small portions of rice, potatoes, low fat bread and pasta (as I'm hypoglycaemic and need the carbohydrates)
salad (no onion or tomatoes)
30mg lansoprazole (my doctor wouldn't give me Nexium)
probiotic tablets high does
DGL licorice 20 minutes before lunch and dinner
aloe vera juice 3 times a day
I also tried
ginger root tablets
but I found they were not as good as the other treatments and I can't stand honey!
Ilooked on you tube. It is a strange feeling at first but you quickly get used to it. I would do it everyday until I had no symptoms and then only if I had some heartburn. The trick is to push down as hard as you feel comfortable, right under the right rib. Try not to pull down on the skin but rather push in and down taking the skin with you. You may find that when you do this you get some acid in your throat which is going to happen as you are pushing on your stomach but this is so worth it as it would get rid of the rib pain and constant reflux.
Any questions I will be happy to answer. Enjoy your day people 🤗
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