Is Gerd Dangerous Or Life
GERD isnt life-threatening or dangerous in itself. But long-term GERD can lead to more serious health problems:
- Esophagitis: Esophagitis is the irritation and inflammation the stomach acid causes in the lining of the esophagus. Esophagitis can cause ulcers in your esophagus, heartburn, chest pain, bleeding and trouble swallowing.
- Barrett’s esophagus: Barrett’s esophagus is a condition that develops in some people who have long-term GERD. The damage acid reflux can cause over years can change the cells in the lining of the esophagus. Barretts esophagus is a risk factor for cancer of the esophagus.
- Esophageal cancer: Cancer that begins in the esophagus is divided into two major types. Adenocarcinoma usually develops in the lower part of the esophagus. This type can develop from Barretts esophagus. Squamous cell carcinoma begins in the cells that line the esophagus. This cancer usually affects the upper and middle part of the esophagus.
- Strictures: Sometimes the damaged lining of the esophagus becomes scarred, causing narrowing of the esophagus. These strictures can interfere with eating and drinking by preventing food and liquid from reaching the stomach.
Behavioral And Other Factors
As mentioned above, body weight is a significant factor in promoting reflux of stomach acid, and weight reduction is helpful.
Pregnancy will markedly increase symptoms of heartburn and sometimes throat symptoms as well. This is partly due to the space taken up by the growing infant. One should avoid clothing that fits tightly across the midsection of the body. It is helpful to practice abdominal or diaphragmatic breathing. This means you should concentrate on pushing out the stomach with each breath instead of expanding the chest. Avoid slumping when sitting down. Avoid bending or stooping as much as you can.
For many people, reflux occurs most often at night and sets up the irritation that continues to bother during the daytime. One of the most important things you can do is to elevate the head of your bed. To do this, use blocks, books or bricks underneath the legs at the head of the bed. The elevation should be 4-6 inches or so, but not high enough that you will slide down when sleeping. Professional singers with acid reflux should consider traveling with blocks in their suitcase for use in hotel rooms.
The use of multiple pillows to get the head up is not effective because it causes the body to curl unless the pillows are maintained under the shoulders in addition to the head. Wedge-shaped pillows can be helpful in this regard.
What Is Silent Reflux
This is the name given to LPR since many patients do not experience classic heartburn or indigestion, and in fact, may be completely unaware it is occurring. Some common symptoms of LPR include hoarseness, a feeling of mucus in the throat, or throat clearing. It may occur when you are upright or lying down.
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The Surprising Link Between Acid Reflux And Tonsillitis
Should you be seeing an acid reflux specialist Los Angeles for your sore throat? Possibly. Sore throats have many possible causes, including viruses, infections and allergies. But did you know that your stomach acid can also cause a sore throat? You may be surprised that your search for a solution to your sore throat may be found at an acid reflux doctor Los Angeles.
Tonsillitis is the inflammation of the tonsils as a result of germs that cause them to swell and become inflamed. Sometimes, you may have a sore throat without any other symptoms of illness. Some throat symptoms can be the result of acid reflux. Seeing an acid reflux specialist Los Angeles can help.
Acid reflux is also called gastroesophageal reflux or GERD. Symptoms include heartburn, a sore throat, a feeling of a lump in the throat, stomach contents backing up into the throat, difficulty swallowing and a bad taste in the mouth. Acid from the stomach irritates the surface of the throat and tonsils, causing a sore throat. Acid from the stomach can also irritate the esophagus. a gastroesophageal reflux doctor Los Angeles specializes in how acid reflux affects your throat.
Laryngopharyngeal reflux is a form of reflux that can also be difficult to determine without a
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How Should I Change My Diet
If you don’t eat certain foods, your throat problems may get better. Here’s a list of foods you should try not to eat :
Tomato-based foods, like spaghetti sauce, chili and pizza
Mint flavoring, like peppermint and spearmint
Citrus fruits, like oranges and grapefruit
Drinks with caffeine, like coffee, tea and cola
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Is There Surgery To Treat Gerd
GERD is usually controlled with medications and lifestyle changes . If these dont work, or if you cant take medications for an extended period, surgery may be a solution.
- Laparoscopic antireflux surgery is the standard surgical treatment. Its a minimally invasive procedure that fixes your acid reflux by creating a new valve mechanism at the bottom of your esophagus. The surgeon wraps the upper part of the stomach around the lower portion of the esophagus. This reinforces the lower esophageal sphincter so food wont reflux back into the esophagus.
- LINX deviceimplantation is another minimally invasive surgery. A LINX device is a ring of tiny magnets that are strong enough to keep the junction between the stomach and esophagus closed to refluxing acid but weak enough to allow food to pass through.
What Is The Best Treatment For Lpr
Your doctor may prescribe a Proton-Pump Inhibitor or a different class of antacid medication. It is important to take the medication every day as prescribed. It can take 4-6 weeks for the inflammation to appear improved on exam.
Besides medication, lifestyle changes are very important. Elevation of the head of the bed is a great way to decrease acid reflux at night. Some studies show this to be more effective than medication. Avoidance of caffeine, chocolate, acidic juices , peppermints, and spicy food help. It is beneficial to stop eating 2-3 hours before lying down, and to eat smaller, more frequent meals rather than large meals.
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How To Know If Your Sore Throat Is From Acid Reflux
Acid reflux is not something to take lightly. If youve been experiencing acid reflux regularly, the constant and unnecessary upward travel of your stomachs acids can severely damage your respiratory system, teeth, throat, and voice box.
If youre unsure whether your sore throat is the result of acid reflux, here are some other signs to watch out for:
How To Get Rid Of Acid Reflux In Throat
The burning sensation and uneasiness can cause a lot of discomforts, and you might immediately wish to visit the doctor to get it cured. But before you head out, look in your kitchen.
There you would find many ingredients that can alleviate the problem immediately. Following are the most effective natural ways to get rid of acid reflux in throat fast:
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Other Possible Causes Of Sore Throat
Apart from acid reflux, a sore throat can be the result of various factors.
A viral infection like the flu or cold is the most common culprit. Know that if a virus causes pharyngitis, it will eventually get resolved on its own.
The only time your doctor would prescribe you antibiotics will be if your sore throat is caused by bacteria. This is referred to as strep throat or streptococcal infection.
Some other factors of sore throat are smoking, pollution, and being allergic to pollens, pets, and molds. If youre in the habit of mouth-breathing while asleep at night, you will likely have a sore throat in the morning.
How Does Acid Reflux Causes A Sore Throat
A sore throat due to acid reflux may be caused by a condition called laryngopharyngeal reflux or silent reflux. This occurs when stomach contents, including acid and enzymes, back up into the esophagus and injure the tissues of the larynx and pharynx . The reason is the malfunctioning of the upper and lower esophageal sphincter muscles. These muscles should keep food moving in the right direction, from mouth to stomach. The lower esophageal sphincter prevents stomach acid from moving up the esophagus. When it malfunctions, stomach acid irritates the esophageal tissue immediately above the gut, causing symptoms such as heartburn and chest pain with swallowing. This problem is known as gastroesophageal reflux .
The upper esophageal sphincter keeps stomach acid from the pharynx and larynx. When it does not work correctly, it is possible to create symptoms such as hoarseness, loss of voice, chronic cough, phlegm in the back of the throat, and a sense that something is stuck in the throat. Even though the stomach contents come in contact with the lower limb before reaching the throat, only about 35 percent of individuals with LPR also experience GERD. Experts do not know why. It might be that the larynx and pharynx are more sensitive to acidity than the esophagus. Additionally, refluxed acid is more likely to pool at the larynx and pharynx, leading to prolonged exposure.
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Additional Therapies For Silent Reflux
A few other natural remedies may provide added relief from silent reflux symptoms. Consider bringing these therapies into your routine if diet changes, probiotics, and stomach acid support havent made a difference.
- Sodium alginate, a supplement derived from brown kelp, forms a foam raft that acts as a physical barrier between the esophagus and stomach. A systematic review found alginate therapy highly effective for mild GERD . Alginate is the active ingredient in a liquid over-the-counter medication available in the UK called Gaviscon Advance and a relatively new product called Reflux Gourmet.
- Melatonin, a hormone your body produces each night to stimulate sleep, may protect the esophagus for people with GERD and heartburn . Studies suggest melatonin may be as effective as a PPI for improving GERD [18
- Trusted SourcePubMedGo to source].
How To Address Silent Reflux
If you have silent reflux, its important to get treatment to prevent long-term damage to your esophagus and throat.
Conventional treatment for silent reflux usually involves proton pump inhibitors like omeprazole , but many reflux patients dont experience relief on these medications. Even worse, long-term PPI use is associated with an increase in all-cause mortality , cardiovascular problems, and GI infections .
A natural approach can often improve or resolve silent reflux and has fewer risks. Lets explore what can help.
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Surgical Treatment For Silent Reflux And Hiatal Hernia
Hiatal hernia when the upper part of your stomach bulges through a tear in your diaphragm is associated with reflux in about 53% of cases .
One study compared a surgical treatment called fundoplication to PPI therapy alone for patients with LPR and hiatal hernia. Fundoplication was found to be more effective for improving cough, throat clearing, and improved quality of life for patients with LPR . Most patients who were treated surgically were able to discontinue PPI therapy.
In addition, some chiropractors and osteopaths are skilled at adjusting a hiatal hernia, which may give some temporary relief of hiatal hernia-related reflux symptoms.
Complications Of Acid Reflux
Some people who have acid reflux for a long time may experience:
- Narrowing of the esophagus: The rising stomach acid can damage cells in the lower esophagus, resulting in scar tissue that narrows the organ. This can make swallowing difficult.
- Erosion of tissues: The acid can also cause ulcers, which can be painful. This is known as erosive esophagitis.
- Barrets esophagus: This condition can cause changes in the tissue that lines the lower esophagus. These changes are associated with a of esophageal cancer. Routine endoscopy exams can detect early signs of this cancer in people with Barrets esophagus.
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When To See A Doctor
A person should see a doctor if they have any bothersome or concerning symptoms, especially those that might indicate an underlying health issue. It is also a good idea to contact a doctor if existing reflux symptoms worsen. Particularly if the symptoms are interfering with daily life, a doctor may recommend stronger medications or surgery.
Anyone who has indigestion with chest pain, shortness of breath, or pain in the arm or jaw should receive emergency medical care. These symptoms may indicate a heart attack.
Laryngeal Pharyngeal Reflux At A Glance
- Reflux of gastric acid can cause several throat problems
- Symptoms and treatment of LPR are often different from typical GERD symptoms
- LPR will usually heal well with proper diagnosis and treatment
Many people with throat discomfort are surprised when they are told by their doctor that they have laryngeal pharyngeal reflux . Gastric acid can cause significant inflammation when it falls on the vocal cords.
If this happens repeatedly, a person can be left with a number of bothersome throat problems. Examples include:
- Sensation like something stuck in the throat
There are individuals with gastroesophageal reflux disease who have throat discomfort. People with GERD have gastric reflux into the esophagus. This typically causes heartburn and regurgitation .
Many people with LPR do not have any of the typical GERD symptoms.
This has lead to some controversies and misunderstandings about LPR:
- Is it a symptom of GERD?
- Are patients with it a subset of GERD?
- Is it a completely different medical problem?
There is not a good answer to these questions, as there is some truth to each of them. It may be easier for physicians to manage LPR if its approached as a completely different problem.
People with GERD nearly always have heartburn. Additionally, they:
On the other hand, LPR is quite different. Many people with LPR do not have heartburn. Additionally, they:
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Best Sore Throat Remedies To Make You Feel Better Fast According To Doctors
Some home remedies only mask painbut these solutions can help you get rid of your sore throat completely.
Sore throat symptoms can be rough. Your saliva goes down like sandpaper, every cough makes you wince, and the only thing you can think about is making that lump in the back of your throat go away.
But to ease the pain, you need to understand whats causing your sore throat in the first place: dry air, smoking, acid reflux, viral infections like the flu or common cold, and bacterial infections like strep can all lead to a sore throat.
In general, a viral infection usually comes with other symptoms, like muscle aches and fatigue, along with your sore throat, says Chester Griffiths MD, an otolaryngologist at Providence Saint Johns Health Center in Santa Monica, Calif. With a bacterial infection, on the other hand, the pain is usually more focused on your throat and the soreness tends to be pretty severe, Dr. Griffiths says. You may also have intense pain when you swallow, along with a high fever.
Exposure to smoke, breathing in dry air, and having acid reflux tends to feel very different from an infection, says Jason Abramowitz, MD, an ear, nose, and throat specialist at ENT and Allergy Associates. Usually patients do not feel as sick overall the pain is also usually not as severe, he says.
Sore Throat And Acid Reflux: Causes And Treatment
Acid reflux happens when stomach acids travel back up into the food pipe, or esophagus, irritating its lining.
This irritation can lead to a sore throat, a dry cough, and wheezing.
It can also cause heartburn, a bitter taste in the mouth, regurgitation, indigestion, and difficulty swallowing.
Acid reflux is a common condition. A person may notice it when they are lying down or bending over, or after eating a big meal or spicy food.
Contents of this article:
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Tests And Surgery For Heartburn And Acid Reflux
If medicines do not help or your symptoms are severe, a GP may refer you to a specialist for:
- tests to find out what’s causing your symptoms, such as a gastroscopy
- an operation on your stomach to stop acid reflux called a laparoscopic fundoplication
Page last reviewed: 09 September 2020 Next review due: 09 September 2023
Pay Attention To What You Drink
Foods arent the only thing that can lead to acid reflux. Beverages play a key role in this area, so its important to examine what you drink, as well. If youre a daily coffee or tea drinker, caffeine can absolutely trigger acid reflux.
Whats more, they can also irritate your esophageal lining. If you drink decaffeinated coffee or tea, you should be in good shape.
Other beverages that can upset your digestive process and cause acid reflux include alcoholic drinks, soda, and citrus drinks. You might have to give up orange juice or lemonade, for example, if they are causing your reflux to act up.
Tomato juice is another problematic beverage for many people. If you drink these types of beverages for their nutrients, consider switching to vitamins and supplements to replenish your intake.
Acid reflux tends to be at its worst shortly after eating. It can also spike when you lie down or bend over. As such, try to prop up your neck and shoulders when you go to bed at night or take a nap.
In doing so, you can help prevent your stomach acids from flowing up and into your throat. By following these helpful tips, youre less likely to experience acid reflux as often.
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