A hiatal hernia is a condition where the upper stomach region pushes into the chest region. Hiatus is an opening between the stomach and diaphragm area. The diaphragm is a muscle which helps in the breathing process, the stomach area pushes itself into the diaphragm through the opening called hiatus. Normally People above the age 50 suffer from this condition.
The causes for a hiatal hernia are not exactly known. In many people, an injury to the muscle tissue or damage caused to the muscle tissue can cause this condition. Another cause is the repeated pressure faced by the muscles around the stomach due to coughing, strain during bowel movements, the strain caused due to lifting heavy objects etc. Some people are born with this condition. Some factors such as obesity, old age, lifestyle habits can cause a hiatal hernia.
A hiatal hernia can be classified into two types known as sliding Hiatal hernias and fixed Hiatal hernias.
- A sliding hiatal hernia occurs when the stomach and esophagus are a common type of hernias where the stomach and esophagus push into the chest area through hiatus. These hernias are small and usually don’t require any treatment.
- Another type of a hiatal hernia is the fixed hiatal hernia. In fixed hiatal hernia also known as a para esophageal hernia, the upper part of the stomach can push through the diaphragm and stays there. Many such cases of fixed hiatal hernia are not serious but the flow of the blood to the stomach can be stopped in some cases which can cause a serious issue.
A hiatal hernia is diagnosed using a specialized x-ray where the doctor can see the esophagus or a hernia can be diagnosed through endoscopy. The symptoms such as heartburn, chest pain can be related to fixed hiatal hernia and should be diagnosed properly for this condition. This condition is treated with surgery and when there are no symptoms, this condition does not need any treatment.
For people with the condition of a hiatal hernia, it may not be necessary always to go for a surgery. Surgery may be needed when the blood supply is cut off to the stomach. The surgery for a hiatal hernia is through laparoscopic surgery. The main advantage of Laparoscopic surgery is that the side effects from this surgery are very less and the infection rate is less because a small incision is made in this procedure. The patient gets recovered easily after laparoscopic surgery which is another advantage.
The surgery is the only method through which a hiatal hernia can be fixed. But there is no guarantee that the condition will not reoccur even if the surgery is done. The patient can get back to normal life after 2 weeks of rest and usually there will not be any diet or food restrictions after the surgery. But it is better to avoid lifting weights, doing some heavy exercise or indulging in some strenuous work.
There are some natural methods through which a hiatus hernia can be rectified. Sometimes the inflammation of the intestines can cause the condition of a hiatus hernia. This inflammation is caused by pH imbalance which can be cured by some medication such as Xembran, Acidim, Hernica etc. By taking this medication surgery can be avoided which is beneficial to the patients suffering from this condition.
Some of the natural medicines such Hernica kills certain bacteria in the stomach which leads to the condition of a hiatal hernia. Some other medicines such as Acidim balances the pH level and the production of acid which causes a hiatal hernia. Following a healthy diet and a healthy lifestyle is important to reduce a hiatal hernia as the medicines will be effective if the lifestyle conditions are good.
To prevent the condition of a hiatus hernia which is caused due to the inflammation of intestines and other organs, balancing the pH levels is very much important. The acidity in the body causes the inflammation and damages the organs by storing the fat cells to fight against acidity.
The natural medicines described above helps in improving the overall health. These medicines also help in reducing the swelling and lumps in the stomach. But these medicines have to taken for a period of 6 months to reduce the condition. The advantage with these medicines is that the chances of reoccurrence of this condition are almost nill.
Healthy lifestyle and a nutritious diet can prevent the condition of a hiatal hernia. Excessive use of medication and some antibiotics can also increase the acidity and thereby the stomach and intestines can get inflamed. It is better to avoid alcohol during such conditions as alcohol increases the acidity and thereby the inflammation. Including alkaline rich foods can also help in preventing the condition of a hiatal hernia.