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Taking A Look At Treatments For Acid Reflux

Dec 18, 2007
This year, 15 million Americans will suffer from Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease. It may start with a particularly uncomfortable burp and leave a restricted feeling in the chest. Some will toss and turn at night, coughing and inhaling excess acid.

The next day, they'll feel lethargic and asthmatic. Symptoms of acid reflux may be indicative of bigger problems like a poor diet, lactose intolerance or digestive failure. Treatments for acid reflux vary, but the good news is that it's not something with which one has to suffer.

If you want to find the best treatment for acid reflux, then change a few bad habits. Most people don't realize that all the kitchen cleaning after the meal contributes to acid reflux, or that laying down within three hours after eating can create a whole world of problems.

More than half of the people who suffer from chronic heartburn also have some form of "supine reflux," which affects people in their sleep. For supine acid reflux sufferers, the symptoms can sometimes be subtle. They may toss and turn, have difficulty breathing, sweat profusely, have coughing fits and wake up feeling hoarse (from breathing in the stomach acids).

Most people also know that greasy and fatty foods are terrible for the digestive tract. Often the stomach needs to produce more acid to break down the greasy layers and protein-based food. Then, on top of that, some fatty foods are simply insoluble and they putrefy in the stomach, rotting and causing a build-up of "unpleasantries," from gas to reflux.

It can be shocking to people when they've been able to eat certain foods their entire lives but as they age, those same foods become a problem. Citrus fruits like oranges, tomatoes, spearmint, peppers and red wine can all be nasty triggers for attacks.

The most common treatments are antacids. This heartburn medication will help sufferers treat the immediate symptoms of acid reflux for fast-acting relief. Hardcore antacids include Reglan and Gaviscon, which aim to improve overall digestive coordination, speeding up the digestive process and creating foam barriers to prevent acid from seeping up unexpectedly. There are often over-the-counter options that work just fine or prescription-based variants for the people with severe GERD symptoms.

The second category of heartburn medication is the Histamine 2 Receptors. Histamine 2 Receptors, like Pepcid AC or Zantac, work by reducing the amount of acid in the stomach, which is sometimes cited as a contributing factor.

For preventative measures, a third treatment includes Proton Pump Inhibitors, which suppresses excessive acid production during those big feasts. Drugs like Prilosec or Nexium are said to work best.

For the occasional sufferer, any drug store will carry a calcium carbonate like Tums, Rolaids or Maalox. These bind to and neutralize acid for immediate reprieve. A fourth treatment are the effervescent products (like Alkaseltzer), which comes in handy when that restrictive feeling in the chest and intense abdominal pain signals real digestive trouble.

While these methods might seem easy enough, the best treatment for acid reflux is to amend one's diet and attack the culprit behind the heartburn symptoms. Occasionally, one will suffer heartburn because there is actually a lack of stomach acids and the necessary chemical triggers don't signal the pancreas or the intestines to help out in the transport of waste and the absorption of nutrients. Spicy foods shouldn't be a deal-breaker if one's diet is packed with Omega-6, Omega-3, vitamins, minerals and leafy greens!
About the Author
Educate yourself further about the treatments for acids reflux from Mike Selvon articles portal. Your feedback is valued and appreciated at our acid reflux treatment blog where a free audio gift awaits you.
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