Acid Reflux

 

Acid reflux brings pain and discomfort to an otherwise enjoyable activity, such as eating. Termed gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, reflux is a chronic digestive condition in which acids in your stomach flow backwards up your throat, causing a burning sensation beneath your breastbone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Causes & Symptoms of GERD

When you eat, the sphincter valve on your esophagus opens and closes, allowing food and liquids to pass from your throat to your stomach. When reflux occurs, this valve fails to close completely, and hydrochloric acids produced during the digestive process flow into your throat and esophagus, producing painful symptoms. The most pronounced is heartburn, or acid indigestion; this is a burning sensation that radiates from the stomach outwards to the abdomen and sternum. Other symptoms include regurgitation, dyspepsia, a sour taste in the mouth, belching, bloating, coughing, wheezing, hoarseness, and nausea.

GERD can be caused by a variety of factors. Hiatal hernia – a condition in which the sphincter valve and upper portion of the stomach move around above the diaphragm – is the most common trigger. Reflux occurs most often immediately following a meal, when you are lying down, or bending over. Risk factors include eating spicy, fatty, or fried foods, or those containing citrus, tomato, chocolate, mint, onions, and garlic; drinking beverages that contain alcohol, caffeine, or carbonation; eating close to bedtime, or lying down following a meal; obesity; smoking; and pregnancy.

 

Treatment & Prevention

Your doctor will give you a physical exam and ask questions about your symptoms in order to gauge the severity of your reflux. If the pain has persisted for longer than a month, you may be referred to a gastroenterologist for additional testing.

 

Avoiding the triggers that cause GERD is the most effective way of preventing it from occurring. Avoid foods and beverages that cause acid reflux, eat smaller meals, and resist late-night snacks. Quit smoking, and lose excess weight. 

Ear Nose & Throat Surgical Associates
Physician’s Medical Terrace

1505 Wilson Terrace #270
Glendale, CA 91206

Phone: 818-241-2101                                    

Ear Nose & Throat Surgical Associates

50 Alessandro Place #230

Pasadena, CA 91105
Phone: 626-577-5550

                                                                                                 

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