Skip to page content

What is indigestion?

Indigestion is pain or discomfort in the upper part of your stomach.1 It’s a problem that affects around 4 out of 10 people at some point in their life, but the good news is it’s usually easy to get to under control.1

What are the causes?

Indigestion happens when acids from your stomach irritate the sensitive lining of your stomach and digestive tract.1 Why this happens is unclear – in many cases, there’s no underlying cause of your indigestion, but it often happens after eating.1,2 Having heavy, fatty or spicy meals are common indigestion triggers, so is eating or drinking too much or eating too quickly.2

What are the symptoms of indigestion?

These are some of the most common indigestion symptoms to look out for:1,2

  • Pain or discomfort – This is usually in the upper abdomen but you might also feel it in your back
  • Bloating – Feeling full after you’ve eaten
  • Feeling sick or retching
  • Heartburn  A burning sensation in the chest that rises up into your oesophagus or food pipe
  • Belching or burping – In a survey, this was the most common indigestion symptom, followed by breaking wind (flatulence).3*


Still have questions? If so, or your symptoms are getting worse, please speak to your GP or a local pharmacist.

How can I treat indigestion?

Looking for effective ways to prevent and treat this common condition?

There are several things you can do take control and help prevent or ease your indigestion symptoms:1,2 

  • Be drink aware – Cut down on caffeine-containing drinks, such as tea, coffee, cola, as well as alcohol and fruit juices
  • Avoid food before bedtime – Stop eating 3–4 hours before you go to sleep
  • Cut down on certain foods – Reduce rich, spicy or fatty foods in your diet
  • Change sleeping position – Prop your head and shoulders up in bed , or put something under the mattress so you are sleeping on a slope, to help keep stomach acid down while you sleep
  • Stop smoking – Aside from easing indigestion, this has many other health benefits
  • Weight control – Lose any excess weight and try to do more regular exercise.

Do you know how Gaviscon can help?

Gaviscon Extra provides soothing relief from indigestion and heartburn.4 Gaviscon Extra:

  • Acts fast ­– gets to work instantly, soothing in just 3 minutes, and lasts for up to 4 hours4–7
  • Provides long-lasting relief4–6 – and is available as a liquid, chewable tablets and liquid sachets
  • Contains two antacids that help neutralise stomach acids4–6
  • Contains an alginate– This works with the body by forming a protective foam barrier on the moment it comes it meets your stomach contents.4–6 This physical barrier sits on top of your stomach, to help prevent stomach acids rising into your oesophagus4–6

With 68% of people experiencing both heartburn and indigestion symptoms and around 1 in 5 people having both at the same time,3* Gaviscon Extra could be an ideal solution.


All information presented is not meant to diagnose or prescribe. If symptoms are severe or prolonged you should consult a doctor or pharmacist.


*Based on survey of 13,831 heartburn and indigestion sufferers from 5 countries3

Gaviscon Extra Oral Suspension, Gaviscon Extra Chewable Tablets and Gaviscon Extra Liquid Sachets Peppermint Flavour contain Sodium Alginate, Sodium Bicarbonate and Calcium Carbonate for heartburn and indigestion. ALWAYS READ THE LABEL. Date of preparation: June 2021. RB-M-43770

  1. Health Service Executive. Dyspepsia. Accessed December 2020.
  2. Guts UK. All you need to know about indigestion. Accessed December 2020.
  3. RB GI segmentation research. September 2010.
  4. Gaviscon Extra Chewable Tablets. Summary of Product Characteristics. Accessed June 2021.
  5. Gaviscon Extra Liquid Sachets. Summary of Product Characteristics. Accessed June 2021
  6. Gaviscon Extra Oral Suspension. Summary of Product Characteristics. Accessed June 2021.
  7. Strugala V, et al. J Int Med Res, 2010;38:449–457.

Article published 1 January 2021