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Hiatus Hernia, Oesophagitis, Reflux - what *do* you order in the pub?!

(32 Posts)
RubberDuck Fri 07-Aug-15 18:30:44

So after five months of pain and going back and forth to the doctor, I have finally had an endoscopy and got a diagnosis of hiatus hernia, oesophagitis and reflux. I have meds prescribed which make things tolerable as long as I'm really careful what I eat and drink. I'm semi-resigned to being caffeine free, alcohol free, and eating chocolate only rarely (mildly depressed, but resigned).

But what do you do when you go to the pub? Went to visit friends the other weekend (which was lovely and took my mind off things) and they (like me previously) enjoy a drink. We ended up at the pub, but I now have no clue what to order other than plain tonic water! (I ended up nursing a half a lager shandy for the duration and it haunted me later)

I can't have anything alcoholic, caffeinated, fizzy or containing citrus - so that rules out just about... everything? Or have I missed something wonderful and obvious. (I really hope it's the latter).

I know this is a pretty frivolous dilemma, especially compared to all the other lifestyle changes, and it's not like I go to the pub often, but it would be nice to not be a complete social pariah on occasion.

VulcanWoman Sat 08-Aug-15 10:45:42

What about having half apple juice half water.
I have these symptoms too and a family history, I'm not really restricting my diet yet but I need to or else the pain just gets worse as I'm sure you've found, damage can be caused too can't it. Do you raise you upper part of your body when sleeping and not eat later on in the evening?
Your friends should understand anyway.

RubberDuck Sat 08-Aug-15 11:46:07

Yes sad Endoscopy showed small cracks in my oesophagus so I've really got to get this under control before more damage is done. I've given sleeping with upper body raised a really good go, but I just can't sleep like that, sadly. I do make sure that I don't eat or drink anything 3 hours before bedtime though.

To be fair, my friends were very understanding and hugely accommodating (I have also gone vegetarian as I found that helped symptoms - and they went to great effort to find a nice restaurant with lots of vegetarian options). I just don't want to feel that all social activity has to revolve around my health issues smile

Thanks for the apple juice idea - I'd dismissed juice thinking it was too acidic, but had forgotten that apple juice is much milder - I'll give that a go smile More exciting than plain water at any rate!

EmNetta Sat 08-Aug-15 17:22:51

I'm wondering how many pubs serve Welch's Grape Juice ? Possibly the ones serving food, as it's non-alcoholic, but without the sweeteners and/or acidity.

RubberDuck Sat 08-Aug-15 17:45:19

That sounds lovely - I'll look out for that. I don't think the pub we went to the other weekend would have had it, as it was more a traditional pub with no food, but I'll definitely ask in future, thanks smile

gingeroots Sat 08-Aug-15 20:02:48

Lime and soda ? Elderflower cordial ? Tea ? De caff coffee ?

VulcanWoman Sat 08-Aug-15 20:15:19

Lime and coffee are no no's.

sadie9 Sat 08-Aug-15 20:15:34

I find the lime cordial 'hurts' also. I'd never have a fresh juice nowadays. Can you have a fizzy drink with ice to quell the fizz. What about a non-alcoholic beer poured over loads of ice. At least you feel you are having a drink that's what I find.

gingeroots Sat 08-Aug-15 20:19:08

I guess we're all different ,but I find lime cordial ( not fresh lime juice ) fairly bland and not acid .

Having had oesphageal cancer I have had surgery and have no sphincter at all so contents of stomach always resurfacing .

gingeroots Sat 08-Aug-15 21:32:17

Most pubs sell J2O and they come in lots of flavours
Apple & raspberry with a hint of rose !
Peach & apricot
Apple & mango etc

VulcanWoman Sat 08-Aug-15 21:42:57

Personally I don't like to have drinks with additives and sweetners in.

RubberDuck Sat 08-Aug-15 22:41:02

Thanks, these ideas are brilliant - I didn't realised J2O had some less acidic varieties, that's useful to know. And hadn't really thought of non-alcoholic beer - I'll give that a try smile At least it'll look the part a bit more!

I've found anything fizzy, even with ice painful, sadly. Ditto lime cordial (tonic and lime used to be my go to non-alcoholic pub drink in the past)

gingeroots: that sounds so painful, I'm so sorry sad

gingeroots Sun 09-Aug-15 09:38:35

rubberduck - I think it's all about trial and error and ingenuity . And have discovered how different we all are and what big variations there are in the way our bodies react .

J20 was just a wild card ,I think ,as vulcan suggests they're a bit full on with sweetness !

I find soda not quite so sharp/fizzy than tonic . Non alcoholic beer sounds a good idea ,and the fizz can easily be reduced .

By the way - I was told by dentist last week to dip my toothpasted brush into bicarb of soda before brushing . Apparently this is good at restoring ph balance in mouth and reducing acidity . He said that as we get older ( me ) the quality of our salvia deteriotates and it becomes less good at reducing acidity . So relevant if you suffer from reflux .

I know this isn't what you were asking but thought I'd pass it on .

Also - substituting cucumber slices for lemon in drinks can be refreshing and works for some . Peppermint can make reflux worse . Licorice tea is nice ,not like hot licorice ,and I find it soothing .

Good luck experimenting .

PS If you're long term on PPI's I believe you should watch out for side effects caused ( I think ,I'm not an expert ) by the effect they have on your body's ability to absorb nutrients . I think Calcium and vit D supplements are recommended and possibly B12 ?

gingeroots Sun 09-Aug-15 09:43:19

Another thought - with me ice really makes swallowing worse ,I think it's coldness kind of restricts my swallowing . Though for you perhaps it numbs the pain ? But it must be a bit of an assault to the system ?

VulcanWoman Sun 09-Aug-15 10:13:57

Gingeroots, my Mum is on medication for reflux and she has to take Calcium and vit D, I think you're right.
Could I ask you, do you have a problem with white bread because I do, It gets stuck in my throat, well, it feels like it does, I need to give it up! Lukewarm drinks seem to suit me best too.

RubberDuck Sun 09-Aug-15 13:55:52

Thank you, this is all so helpful. Love all the tips - didn't know that about bicarb when brushing your teeth - will definitely do that as my teeth and gums have been getting more sensitive with the reflux (and I've been having a resurgence of asthma symptoms which I think is connected).

I've been taking a multivitamin which has B12, calcium and vitamin D in it, so hopefully those are covered. Had already discovered the peppermint problem (ouch - that was nasty!) but haven't tried liquorice tea so will add that to the experiment list and the cucumber slices sound a fabulous idea.

Thank you so much for your support and advice. Definitely feel much less negative about readjusting now smile

gingeroots Sun 09-Aug-15 14:13:35

Vulcan yes spongy food like bread ,hot cross buns can be tricky .

Counterintuitively toast and crunchy things like preztels can be easier .
But of course it all depends what's wrong - I guess if your oesphageous is inflamed and sore then hard stuff is going to hurt .

My problem was more to do with the food getting down my oesphageous ,so soft food and any food really would meet the blockage /tumour and get stuck .

VulcanWoman Sun 09-Aug-15 15:01:59

Thanks for all your suggestions Ginger. I'm trying to stop the acid as much as I can, if it's been bad, hot drinks can be sore and any food really as it passes the bit before it goes into my stomach I can feel a slight twinge and is a bit uncomfortable but not pain yet! I hope you're feeling more comfortable and better now after your surgery, best wishes.

gingeroots Sun 09-Aug-15 17:30:20

Thanks Vulcan I'm doing very well ,and a big fan of the NHS smile

I hope you've had tests for your symptoms ? Endoscopy ?

VulcanWoman Sun 09-Aug-15 18:27:52

Yes I agree we are very lucky to have the NHS. I'm not going for any tests yet, I know the badness that it can be though, working on my diet.

gingeroots Sun 09-Aug-15 18:41:58

You sound a bit as though you feel you're responsible for your symptoms ,but you shouldn't feel like that .

I personally have a little theory along the lines of my stomach acid being particularly strong and there being some sort of physical disposition ( some sort of muscular weakness in the diapragham ) as reflux definetly runs in our family .

I guess your diet will affect reflux but I don't think it will cure it .Don't be too wary of having tests ,they're ok .

VulcanWoman Sun 09-Aug-15 18:57:36

Yes, like you it runs in my family and agree physical disposition/muscular weakness, but my theory rightly or wrongly diet and lifestyle play a major part IMO. Two Family members, one with good lifestyle the other not, the not one developed into badness. I wish I could live on wheatgrass and the likes, you'd think I'd of had enough of a warning but that some how goes to the back of my mind when I feel like eating some crap. I do what I can and keep trying to work on it.

chemenger Sun 09-Aug-15 19:06:38

Would tomato juice be too acidic? I drank gallons of that in the pub when pregnant and tortured by heartburn.

RubberDuck Sun 09-Aug-15 19:28:35

I second not being wary of the tests. I'd really built up a lot of anxiety about the endoscopy and in the end it was nowhere near as bad as I feared. Staff were really reassuring and kind, I asked for sedation and it was all over so quick (and I really don't remember much about the actual procedure!!). I have no fear of going for another endoscopy if I need to.

chemenger - not sure about tomato juice. I know tomatoes are on the list as potential heartburn triggers (as are onions) and although I haven't noticed particularly flare ups after tomatoey meals, I think I'd be a bit reluctant to have a whole glass of juice.

VulcanWoman Sun 09-Aug-15 19:35:23

Tomatoes are the Devils juice, I make my own pasta sauce and soup but it's no good for me unfortunately.

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