Perhaps you’ve just eaten a good meal. Now, though, you’re in pain. There’s a sharp, burning sensation in your chest that won’t seem to go away. In fact, it gets worse when you bend or lie down. What’s wrong? Most people would answer “heartburn.” That’s correct.
It’s interesting that the word heartburn is often used synonymously with the terms acid reflux and GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease). However, these terms actually have different meanings.
Acid reflux is a common health condition that ranges in severity. GERD is a long-term, more serious form of that condition. And heartburn is a symptom of both. It’s important to know the difference so that you know what action to take to preserve your health. So when you start to feel “the burn,” is acid reflux to blame or GERD? Further, what can you do about it?
Gastroesophageal reflux disease, recurrent acid reflux, is the result when acid from the stomach flows up into the esophagus, which carries food from the mouth to the stomach. The lining of the esophagus is thin and when it becomes irritated in this way, there’s a burning sensation in the chest and sometimes throat.
In addition to this unpleasant feeling, other symptoms include:
If left untreated for a significant period of time, a person can develop painful ulcers. Constant inflammation can also be a cause of irritation. Esophageal strictures or, in other words, narrowing of the esophagus can lead to trouble swallowing.
Worst of all, a person could develop Barrett’s Esophagus , which is when the lining of the esophagus is so damaged by acid that it becomes like the lining of the stomach. This condition can actually turn into a rare form of cancer called esophageal adenocarcinoma.
No doubt, you can see why prompt treatment is necessary if an individual has GERD. What options are available for treatment?
As discussed, when left to its own devices, GERD can cause major health complications. It’s bad enough on its own!
That’s why, if you suspect that you may have it, you should see your doctor as soon as possible. The sooner it’s detected, the sooner it can be treated before it causes additional issues. You may have GERD but you don’t have to suffer constantly because of it. That’s a choice. What will your choice be? Will you suffer or seek help?In addition to getting help for yourself if needed, you can encourage others to do the same. How? During GERD Awareness week , you can help to increase the understanding of this disease and draw attention to research needs. You can help others to understand what you now understand — chronic acid reflux should not be ignored or dismissed. Share what you know!
It’s that time of year again! The holidays are beginning for many families, and the rush is on to find that perfect gift. Whether you’ve gotten all of the presents long ago, or you are still in the “research” phase, it’s a good idea to have safety a priority in addition to fun.
Getting presents for kids can be really easy, or quite tricky. You have to think about age appropriateness, trends, components, to name a few considerations. Not sure what to do? It’s okay, here are few tips.
How would you answer? When is flu season? You might have heard that it begins in December and often lasts through February. While that’s generally true, it’s also true that the beginning and end of the season are unpredictable. In fact, sometimes it can begin in the fall and continue through spring.No matter the time of year, though, no one wants to end up with the flu. Coughing, chills, body ache and fever really don’t sound pleasant, do they? So what can you do to make sure that you’re spared for one more season? Get vaccinated.
Did you know that November is Bladder Health Month ?
Bladder health isn’t something that’s talked about openly or often. Yet, it’s very important. The ultimate goal of Bladder Health Month is to help people speak more openly about it, improve their overall bladder health and raise bladder cancer awareness.
When we think about bladder health it raises the question: What important things do you need to know on this subject of bladder health? Two issues that you should be aware of are first, urinary incontinence and an overactive bladder (OAB), and what are worrisome symptoms that I should talk to my doctor about.