Reham Khresheh, PhD
Objective: to explore the strategies used by Jordanian women to manage heartburn during pregnancy. Design: an exploratory descriptive study.
Participants and setting: 235 Jordanian women from the three regions of Jordan, aged between18 and 54 years, who were pregnant at the time of the study or had previously, had at least one full-term pregnancy.
Findings: a number of strategies were used by Jordanian women in the sample for the alleviation of heartburn of pregnancy, including non-pharmacological strategies such as diet and lifestyle changes, pharmacological treatments such as antacids, and the use of home remedies such as drinking cold milk, ‘baking powder’ in liquid form or herbs, eating cucumber, lintel seeds, or dry tea leaves. Women aged 40 years and older, who had lower income, and were not employed, were more likely to use home remedies to manage heartburn in pregnancy than the other groups. Overall, women rated their chosen strategy as useful.
Key conclusions and implications for practice: heartburn can be very uncomfortable and can affect food intake and appetite, daily routine and even sleep. Heartburn during pregnancy is at risk for being poorly managed given that birth is the cure. As a health-care provider, it is important to prepare women and their families to manage heartburn during pregnancy effectively. Midwives should encourage women to seek help from care providers when they need it, and continue to assess heartburn and the strategies used to manage symptoms during pregnancy.
Midwifery (2010), doi:10.1016/j.midw.2010.05.013