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 What is Acid Reflux

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Join date : 2011-08-08

What is Acid Reflux Empty
PostSubject: What is Acid Reflux   What is Acid Reflux Icon_minitimeMon Aug 15, 2011 9:21 am

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Acid reflux disease, also known as Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) or gastric reflux disease, is one of the most common conditions experienced by people all over the world. It is a condition that develops when the acid in the stomach seeps back into the esophagus and back in the throat causing discomfort. One should note that acid reflux is a symptom and acid reflux disease is the condition that causes it. Sometimes, people use the term acid reflux and heartburn interchangeably, which is incorrect. Heartburn is one of the symptoms of acid reflux disease. In order to know what is acid reflux disease in detail, we need to know the causes and symptoms of it. Let us take a look at it in detail.

Causes of Acid Reflux Disease

Acid reflux is caused due to improper functioning of the lower esophageal sphincter muscles. Apart from this, there are several other reasons that lead to acid reflux disease; one of the most important being, one's diet and dietary habits. Eating spicy and fried foods is considered as one of the prominent causes of acid reflux disease. Secondly, eating heavy meals at night, immediately lying down or bending down after having meals, etc. leads to acid reflux. On the other hand, smoking, alcohol consumption, obesity, etc. are also termed as major causes of this condition. Acid reflux disease is also commonly seen in pregnant women. If you are wondering what causes acid reflux during pregnancy, then it is the increased size of the uterus and body weight that exerts pressure on the abdomen. The hormone changes in the body can also result in acid reflux. What are the symptoms of acid reflux? Let us take a look.

Symptoms of Acid Reflux Disease

The following are the acid reflux symptoms in women and men.

* Chest pain
* Heartburn
* Dyspepsia
* Regurgitation
* Nausea
* Vomiting
* Indigestion
* Acidity
* Abdominal pain
* Cough
* Difficulty in swallowing

Most of the acid reflux symptoms in children and infants are same as above. However, irritation, loss of appetite, constant crying, etc. are also some of the acid reflux disease symptoms observed in case of infants and babies. Chronic and constant cough in children can also be caused due to acid reflux disease.

Treatment of Acid Reflux Disease

After knowing what is acid reflux disease, you might also want to know the treatment methods available to treat the same. Acid reflux treatment involves use of medications and home remedies. In minor cases, one can go for antacid tablets or syrups that can be obtained over-the-counter in order to treat acid reflux disease. Other medications like H2 blockers and proton pump inhibitor drugs also help in treating acid reflux. However, one should note that although these medications are effective, they help in temporary treatment. It is essential to find out the root cause of the disease and make changes in one's diet and lifestyle to get rid of acid reflux disease permanently.

One should make dietary changes and follow the acid reflux diet for the prevention of this condition. On the other hand, one should have meals on specific time everyday and avoid having heavy meals at night. Children should also be encouraged to have a balanced diet. Secondly, it is better to reduce or quit smoking and alcohol consumption if one wishes to prevent the recurrence of acid reflux disease. Pregnant women should consult the doctor before going for any medications to treat acid reflux disease. They may also consult the doctor for acid reflux remedies during pregnancy.

Now that you know what is acid reflux, its causes and preventive measures; you might as well try to prevent it. Lastly, one should note that if symptoms, other than aforementioned, are observed, it is better to consult the doctor as soon as possible. Take care!
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