What Exactly Is Acid Reflux?

Filed Under Other Digestive Problems | No comments 
2012
Dec 5

 

Many people suffer from acid reflux. This condition has to do with the way that the acid from your stomach rises up and enters your throat. Understanding what it is, what causes it, and how to treat it can help you to deal with your own acid reflux.

At the bottom of your esophagus is a valve known as the “Lower Esophageal Sphincter.” Essentially, this valve is meant to allow food to pass through from your throat to your stomach. If the valve doesn’t close entirely, or if it opens more than it should, the acid produced in your stomach may move up into the esophagus. You’ll have symptoms like chest pain or heartburn. If you get this kind of symptom more than twice each week, you have a condition known as “acid reflux disease,” otherwise known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

What makes acid reflux happen?

There are a number of possible causes for acid reflux disease, including things such as a hiatal hernia. In addition, risk factors such as obesity, being overweight, snacking close to bedtime, eating spicy and fatty foods, smoking, drinking carbonated and caffeinated drinks, and even being pregnant can all be risk factors for acid reflux.

How do I know if I have acid reflux?

The two most common symptoms of acid reflux include heartburn, which is a pain that can move from the stomach up through the abdomen, chest, and into the throat. The other most common symptom is regurgitation of acid, which you can recognize by a sour, bitter taste in the back of your throat or even your mouth.

Some of the other symptoms can include bloating, unstoppable hiccups, nausea, unexplained weight loss, wheezing, burping, dysphagia (the narrowing of the esophagus), and chronic sore throat.

How do I treat acid reflux?

There are a number of ways to deal with acid reflux. Lifestyle changes, such as not eating before bed, quitting smoking, and eating smaller more frequent meals may help. Losing weight, wearing loose clothes, and even ceasing medications that tend to trigger acid reflux can help, too.

There are a number of anti-nausea products that can help with reflux, as well. Check out some of the all-natural nausea solutions and see which ones are also useful for your acid reflux.

 

photo by: Rennett Stowe