Treatment of Indigestion

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Antacids. Doctors often first recommend antacids—over-the-counter medicines that neutralize acids in your stomach. Antacids include

  • calcium carbonate  (Rolaids, Tums)
  • loperamide  (Imodium)
  • simethicone  (Maalox, Mylanta)
  • sodium bicarbonate (Alka-Seltzer)

Antibiotics. To treat a Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection, your doctor will prescribe antibiotics—medicines that kill bacteria. He or she will prescribe at least two of the following:

  • amoxicillin  (Amoxil)
  • clarithromycin  (Biaxin)
  • metronidazole  (Flagyl)
  • tetracycline  (Sumycin)
  • tinidazole  (Tindamax)

H2 blockers. H2 blockers are medicines that decrease the amount of acid your stomach produces. H2 blockers provide short-term or on-demand relief for many people with indigestion. You can buy an H2 blocker or your doctor can prescribe one. H2 blockers include

  • cimetidine  (Tagamet HB)
  • famotidine  (Pepcid AC)
  • nizatidine  (Axid AR)
  • ranitidine  (Zantac 75)

Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). PPIs are most effective in treating indigestion if you also have heartburn. You can buy some PPIs or your doctor can prescribe one. PPIs include

  • esomeprazole  (Nexium)
  • lansoprazole  (Prevacid)
  • omeprazole  (Prilosec, Zegerid)
  • pantoprazole (Protonix)
  • rabeprazole  (AcipHex)

Changes in what you eat and drink

Your doctor may recommend that you avoid certain foods and drinks that may cause indigestion or make your symptoms worse, such as

  • alcoholic beverages
  • carbonated, or fizzy, drinks
  • foods or drinks that contain caffeine
  • foods that contain a lot of acid, such as tomatoes, tomato products, and oranges
  • spicy, fatty, or greasy foods

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