GERD: SYMPTOMS, TREATMENT AND REMEDIES
WHAT IS GERD?
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is caused when the contents of the stomach and the acidic juices flow back from the stomach to the throat. It is a digestive disorder that results in chest pain, burning sensation in the throat and may also cause damage to the tissues.
Under normal circumstances, the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) opens up to allow the passage of food into the stomach and closes to prevent the stomach’s content from flowing back into the esophagus. Gastroesophageal reflux (GER) occurs due to the malfunctioning of lower esophageal sphincter that allows the acid to flow up into the esophagus.
- Facing difficulty in swallowing the food
- Acid regurgitation (re-tasting previously eaten food0
- Feeling unwell
- Excess release of saliva
- A sore throat or the sensation of a lump in the throat
- Laryngitis or hoarseness
- Inflammation of the gums
- Formation of cavities
- Bad breath
- Chest pain or sensing a heartburn due to indigestion
TREATMENT & PREVENTION
If the above-mentioned symptoms recur frequently then one should consult the doctor and undergo a proper diagnosis of their condition. Doctors usually prescribe a number of medications to counter the acid reflux problem. In order to decrease the amount of acid produced in the stomach, the patient is given proton pump inhibitors and H2 blockers. Antacids are also recommended as they are alkaline chemicals which neutralize the acidity of the stomach and mitigate the situation.
Apart from this, the ingestion of prokinetics and erythromycin tablets can help empty the stomach faster. However, if the medications do not alleviate the patient’s condition, then the gastroenterologist may suggest one of the following surgical approach.
Fundoplication: It is performed via laparoscopic surgical technique. The upper curve of the stomach (fundus) is wrapped around the esophagus, preventing the recurrence of acid reflux.
Endoscopic procedures: These procedures involve endoscopic sewing to tighten the sphincter muscle that will stop the acid reflux.
It is important to understand that only medications and surgery cannot be the answer to every problem. One has to follow a strict guideline of eating habits and exercise routine to prevent the disease. Following are important tips to help avoid the onset of GERD.
Maintain a balanced body weight and opt for general exercise.
- Abstain from consuming tobacco, alcohol and excessive intake of caffeine
- Chewing gum has also shown positive results according to a few studies
- Maintain a time gap of 3 hours between your last meal and sleep
- Eat in small portions
- Sleep with your head slightly elevated to decrease the possibility of an acid reflux
The incidence of any disease is often unforeseen. However, with Apollo Diagnostic one can be assured of quality healthcare and precise diagnosis. They combine the latest medical technology with sophisticated diagnostic equipments to deliver accurate results and clinical evaluation. Book your appointment here: https://www.apollodiagnostics.in/