Prop-up pillows combat gravity while you sleep, decreasing the likelihood that stomach contents will be able to reflux back into your esophagus.
When you are lying down, it’s easy for acid to flow from your stomach into your esophagus. By contrast, if you’re standing up, sitting, or lying with your upper body at an incline, gravity keeps stomach contents down.
You can try placing 4 to 6-inch wooden blocks under the head of your bed to create an incline. This may, however, cause you to slide down the bed while you sleep, and could be uncomfortable. Simply propping up your head and neck by adding a few extra pillows isn't recommended, since it doesn't tend to work as well and can cause tension on the head or neck. For many people, anti-reflux pillows, which essentially place a wedge under your upper body, are a better idea. Prop-up pillows support your back, head and neck, placing your entire upper body at an incline.
Most prop-up pillows are elevated between 30 to 45 degrees, or 6 to 8 inches.
Do some research to find a pillow that’s right for you. Your pillow should relieve heartburn symptoms and be comfortable for your back. Many of these pillows are sold online.
Last updated: 17-Jun-15