You may feel like you have food stuck in your throat or like you are choking or your throat is tight. GERD can also cause a dry cough and bad breath. Upper Endoscopy – An upper endoscopy or EGD involves placing a small camera through the mouth and into the upper gastrointestinal tract allowing evaluation of the esophagus, stomach, and first part of the small intestine (duodenum).
Both may be effective in relieving symptoms. Prescription drugs may be more effective in healing irritation of the esophagus and relieving symptoms.
When a hiatal hernia is present, it is easier for the acid to come up. In this way, a hiatal hernia can cause reflux. A hiatal hernia can happen in people of any age; many otherwise healthy people over 50 have a small one. When refluxed stomach acid touches the lining of the esophagus, it causes a burning sensation in the chest or throat called heartburn. The fluid may even be tasted in the back of the mouth, and this is called acid indigestion.
In some people with GERD, certain foods and drinks can make the symptoms worse. Those dietary triggers might include alcoholic beverages.
What is heartburn?
GERD has been linked to a variety of respiratory and laryngeal complaints such as laryngitis, chronic cough, pulmonary fibrosis, earache, and asthma, even when not clinically apparent. These atypical manifestations of GERD are commonly referred to as laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR) or as extraesophageal reflux disease (EERD). The gel from aloe vera leaves is known for soothing a sunburn – but what about a heartburn? Some people take aloe vera internally to reduce stomach acid and calm irritation.
- People also may experience heartburn after eating specific foods or drinking certain beverages.
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) happens when stomach acid and juices back up, or reflux, into the esophagus, the tube that connects the throat to the stomach.
- Long-term exposure of the esophagus to gastric acid can cause damage such as erosion (esophageal ulcers), inflammation (esophagitis), scarring (esophageal stricture), and changes to the inner esophageal lining (Barrettâ€™s esophagus).
- Treatment of acid reflux includes over-the-counter (OTC) medications including antacids and H2-blockers; prescription medications such as proton pump inhibitors, coating agents, and promotility agents; and in severe cases, surgery.
Because drugs work in different ways, combinations of drugs may help control symptoms. People who get heartburn after eating may take both antacids and H2 blockers. The antacids work first to neutralize the acid in the stomach, while the H2 blockers act on acid production.
In most patients who do not tolerate medical therapy or in patients who have inadequate or incomplete relief of GERD symptoms from appropriate medical therapy, antireflux surgery – performed by experienced surgeons and in appropriately selected patients – is a safe and effective option. 24-Hour pH Test – A pH study involves a thin, soft silastic tube (catheter) inserted through a patientâ€™s nose and into the distal esophagus above the LES. Sensors on the tube detect and record acid reflux episodes. The device is also designed to record when a patient feels symptoms to determine if these symptoms correlate with reflux episodes. This test is conducted over a 24-hour period on an ambulatory patient who is off acid-suppression medications.
If you like green vegetables and have acid reflux, youâ€™re in luck. Asparagus, spinach, kale and brussels sprouts all are highly alkaline, meaning theyâ€™re good for your stomach and digestive system. Being naturally low in fat and sugar, vegetables also help lessen stomach acid. While over-the-counter and prescription medicines are available, lifestyle changes can sometimes help those with only occasional acid reflux. The Mayo Clinic advises losing excess weight, eating smaller meals, and avoiding alcohol and nicotine.