Acid reflux can be incredibly uncomfortable, yet far too many people fail to take action to resolve this common condition. For those in and around Valley Stream, New York, Brandon Rieders, MD, and Bradley Rieders, MD, of GastroCare LI, are a wonderful resource for acid reflux and all other digestive health matters. Book your visit today online or by phone to get started.
To understand acid reflux, it helps to think about how your upper digestive system works to move food into your stomach. When you eat, your teeth and saliva begin to break down the food into smaller pieces.
That food passes through your esophagus and into your stomach, where powerful acids quickly break food down even further. A ring of tough muscle tissue called the lower esophageal sphincter opens to allow food to pass into the stomach, then closes to prevent acid and partially digested food from moving backward into the esophagus.
Acid reflux is a condition that develops when your lower esophageal sphincter fails to fully seal the space between your esophagus and stomach. That allows a small amount of stomach acid to move into the lower part of your esophagus, where it can cause pain and other symptoms.
Understanding the signs of acid reflux can help you know when it’s time to take action. Heartburn is a primary symptom and is felt as a burning pain that begins in your stomach and spreads upward to your chest or throat.
Additional symptoms of acid reflux include:
If you experience these changes, schedule a diagnostic visit right away. There are treatments that can help acid reflux and prevent more serious complications.
It’s important to find a way to treat acid reflux. Left untreated, the condition can eventually cause damage to the tissues in your esophagus and throat.
Making changes to your diet and lifestyle are a great place to begin. Taking steps to eat smaller meals, raising the head of your bed, or sleeping in a more upright position can all be helpful. If you are overweight, dropping a few pounds can go a long way toward easing your symptoms.
Medications can help treat acid reflux. Some drugs work to decrease acid production, while others help by strengthening your lower esophageal sphincter or helping you empty your stomach faster.
When you rely on GastroCare LI for your digestive health needs, you can rest assured you’re in excellent hands as you move through the diagnostic and treatment process. Begin today by calling to book a visit, or schedule online with just a few clicks of the mouse.