GERD and Acid Reflux

Heartburn is often a symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), or acid reflux.


If you have GERD, talk to your doctor about treatment options that are right for you.


GERD Symptoms

Gastroesophageal reflux disease, commonly referred to as GERD, or acid reflux, is a condition in which the liquid content of the stomach regurgitates (flows up, or refluxes) into the esophagus. The liquid can inflame and damage the lining of the esophagus.

The main symptoms are persistent heartburn and acid regurgitation. Although some people with GERD do not experience heartburn. Instead, they may experience pain in the chest, hoarseness in the morning, or trouble swallowing. They may feel tightness in their throat similar to choking or food lodged in the throat. GERD can also cause a dry cough and bad breath. Only a doctor can diagnose GERD, if you think you have this condition, talk to your doctor.


Relief and Treatment of GERD

The good news is that most people are able to control GERD's symptoms. Even so, excessive stomach acid in your esophagus can be serious, so it's important to know when to seek stronger heartburn treatment.

Changes to diet and lifestyle can offer heartburn relief. Easing the frequency and severity of your GERD and acid reflux symptoms can be as straightforward as cutting down on certain foods, quitting smoking, increasing exercise, and losing weight.

For more persistent acid indigestion symptoms, heartburn treatment can include medications such as over-the-counter antacids, acid reducers, and prescription medications such as proton-pump inhibitors. Occasionally, a doctor may recommend surgery to treat chronic GERD and its symptoms.



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