The uncomfortable pain of frequent heartburn is something many have accepted as normal, attempting to cope with the symptoms on their own. Fortunately, treatment for frequent heartburn exists and is something which can be addressed fairly quickly. Frequent heartburn is the result of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which is highlighted by an unpleasant taste in the back of the mouth.
As a digestive system dysfunction, heartburn is the irritation of the esophagus by stomach acid caused by a failing muscular valve. This valve is our lower esophageal sphincter (LES) and is what helps keep acid from leaving the stomach. Treatment options for sufferers of frequent heartburn depend entirely upon the root cause, whether it be lifestyle choices or stomach abnormalities. Occasional heartburn can be caused by eating food too quickly, which overwhelms the stomach making the retention of its acid difficult, especially when laying down.
Obesity increases the likelihood of heartburn, and can be addressed through weight loss supported by regular physical activity and healthy eating. Smoking relaxes the LES, and can be addressed through smoking cessation. There are many options for over the counter treatment, in the form of antacids, H-2-receptor antagonists and proton pump inhibitors. It is important to note that these options serve to treat the symptoms of heartburn, providing relief which may only be effective for a short term period. Other medicinal remedies are offered and may be prescribed by your doctor to address heartburn.
Although the aforementioned points cover the majority of heartburn causes and symptoms, the only way to accurately pinpoint the cause of heartburn is to see a doctor. Downriver Gastroenterology offers access to expert gastroenterology care. To learn more about Downriver Gastroenterology and our practice, please visit us on the web or call our office at (734) MY-COLON.