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Three Natural Remedies for Heartburn

Theres Natural Relief from Heartburn

Have you suffered for months or years from heartburn, acid reflux, or indigestion? Is it to the point where you carry Tums, Pepto-Bismol or proton pump inhibitors around with you wherever you go? Heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion are common ailments, and people of all ages experience their uncomfortable symptoms, says Dr. Sasha Rose, a board-certified naturopathic doctor and the Medical Director at Wildwood Medicine in Portland, Maine.

Yet, those who take the conventional route to treating heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion often never get to the root of their problem. Thats because Western Medicine often treats the symptoms but ignores the cause of the condition. In fact, many people permanently adopt the use of over-the-counter drugs, not knowing that these conventional treatments do not heal, they simply mask your symptoms. The fact is that conventional treatments are meant to be used for days or weeks, not months and years.

If youre using medications, such as proton pump inhibitors, to suppress your normal stomach acid for years or even decades, then you could be at risk for bigger problems,says Dr. Rose. Stomach acid is there for a reason, its there to digest food. If theres not enough acid in your stomach, then your food is not getting properly broken up and it can become a domino effect, leading to more serious imbalances in your microbiome and gut flora.

Proton pump inhibitors are really intended for two weeks,says Dr. Rose, yet people stay on them for months and even years.

Getting Natural Relief from Heartburn

The good news is that there are several natural ways to get temporary relief from heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion. Most people dont know that theres large a variety of natural remedies derived from common plants and herbs and many of these are already in your kitchen!

Here are some suggestions that can relieve the suffering from the burning or uncomfortable conditions that come with chronic heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion.

  1. Eat your biggest meal in the middle of the day, not at night which is when many people suffer from heartburn.
  2. Raise up the head of your bed and or sleep on two pillows.
  3. Deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL), a form of licorice known to alleviate the symptoms of acid reflux is available in supplement or chewable form.
  4. Aloe Vera can help reduce acid production and act as an anti-inflammatory agent. Aloe Vera is available as a juice or in supplement form.
  5. Baking soda mixed with water can also provide temporary relief.

Finding the Long-Term Fix for Heartburn

The natural remedies listed above provide relief for heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion. For some, they can even cure the problem. For others, however, its necessary to go deeper. Once youve gotten temporary relief from your heartburn and acid reflux symptoms, thats the time to seek the long-term fix. Part of this entails looking at what is causing the problem in the first place.

One way to start your long-term healing is to look at the most common foods that exacerbate heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion. Among them are some of our favorites: coffee, alcohol, spicy foods, and tomato products, such as tomato paste. Reducing or altogether removing those items from your diet is a great way to start, but for some its not easy to make these dietary changes. Getting support can make all the difference.

The process of healing from heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion can take time, and having a doctor to help you along the path to optimal health, is not only smart, but its an investment in your long-term health and vitality. If you want to master your digestive health and treat your heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion naturally, Dr. Sasha Rose can help get to the root cause.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Sasha, either in person or online, go to:

http://drsasharose.com/schedule/

About

Dr. Sasha specializes in treating chronic digestive disorders. These include GERD (gastro-esophageal reflux disorder), IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth), Ulcerative Colitis and Crohns disease. In 2013 she published her first book: Digestive Relief for Life: The Secret to the Mind-Gut Connection.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Sasha Rose, go to:

http://drsasharose.com/schedule/


Insurance Coverage for Naturopathic Medicine?

Insurance for NDs in Maine: Fact or Fiction? Grunge rubber stamp with the name and map of Maine, vector illustration

Insurance coverage for office visits with Naturopathic doctors (ND) is relatively new to Maine. Although coverage went from non-existent to partial over the last few years, it remains incomplete.  Currently, the following insurance plans cover ND services in-network: Maine Community Health Options (MCHO) and Anthem/Blue Cross Blue Shield.  This is big news for many individuals in Maine who value and utilize the services of NDs!

Unfortunately, Harvard Pilgrim and Aetna remain lacking in their coverage of ND services. Harvard Pilgrim and Aetna refuse to allow NDs to become in-network providers, though some Harvard Pilgrim plans accept NDs as out-of-network. However, usually an out-of-network deductible is significantly higher than the in-network deductible, making this almost the same as non-coverage. Aetna goes a step further and refuses to acknowledge NDs as medical providers, effectively squashing any submitted claim at the outset.

What’s the big deal?

Firstly, lack of coverage interferes with an individual’s ability to fully utilize their dearly purchased health insurance by receiving reimbursement for valid healthcare services.  Secondly, it’s in direct violation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) AKA Obamacare. The ACA section 2706, titled “Nondiscrimination in Health Care,” requires insurance companies to cover services by any licensed provider acting within their scope of practice.

A group health plan and a health insurance issuer offering group or individual health insurance coverage shall not discriminate with respect to participation under the plan or coverage against any health care provider who is acting within the scope of that provider’s license or certification under applicable State law.*ACA effective 1/1/2014.

Refusing to cover services provided by NDs that would normally be covered by MDs/DOs/NPs violates this section of the ACA.

Will all my visits to an ND be covered?

Ideally, insurance companies would cover all ND health services, but this isn’t the case.  In fact, many patients experience denial even for services provided by MDs.   However, preventative services (ex. annual exams) fall under the category of medical necessity and insurance companies must cover them according to the ACA.

Therefore, at the very least, annual exams, paps, clinical breast exams, etc. performed by NDs should be covered by Aetna and all insurance companies in the state of Maine. This isn’t happening. Aetna is refusing to acknowledge NDs as providers despite the fact that NDs are licensed in the state of Maine.

What can I do to change this? Hand writing Take Action Now with marker, business concept

The Maine Bureau of Insurance (BOI) is responsible for enforcing the ACA and making sure insurance companies follow the law. Unfortunately, as of yet, they’ve been ineffective in altering Aetna’s stance.

This is where you come in.

The BOI needs to know how many people are being affected by Aetna’s denials. If each person who experiences discrimination of coverage by Aetna (or any insurance company) submitted a complaint to the BOI, things would likely change.

If you have Aetna and/or Harvard Pilgrim and are denied coverage for ND services then please submit a complaint to the BOI.

To submit a complaint, go to the following website and follow the directions:

http://www.maine.gov/pfr/insurance/complaint.htm

Things can change but it requires the voices of many!