When most people think of acid reflux, they think of heartburn. But this condition can actually cause a wide variety of symptoms which most people are unaware of. Knowing the connection between these symptoms and acid reflux is important for many reasons. Coughing is one symptom of acid reflux which in unresponsive to cough medicines- it must be treated as reflux. This is the case with many acid reflux symptoms, including indigestion. Acid reflux gas, bloating, nausea, abdominal pain, and fullness can only be addressed with reflux treatment.
Acid reflux occurs when stomach acids back up into the esophagus. This happens because a small valve between the stomach and esophagus malfunction, allowing stomach contents to travel backwards. These harsh stomach acids are the reason for acid reflux gas and other indigestion problems. Fortunately, there are many ways to prevent these indigestion woes as well as several treatment options.
Diet plays a major role in reflux, and simple dietary and lifestyle changes are enough for many people to control their reflux. Many foods have been linked to an increase in acid reflux, including chocolate, fried foods, fatty foods, spicy foods, and foods with a high acidic content (citrus fruits, citrus juices, and tomatoes). What you drink can also play a role, as caffeine, alcohol, and carbonated beverages will increase acid reflux gas.
You may find it helpful to keep a diary of what you eat for a certain period of time. This can help you identify your individual reflux triggers and avoid or eliminate them. You may find that certain foods do not aggravate you as much as others and you may even be able to indulge in certain “triggers”. Doctors also recommend losing weight if you need to, and cutting back or quitting smoking.
Of course, prevention is not enough to treat acid reflux in some cases. If your symptoms are more frequent or severe, your doctor may recommend medication. Most over-the-counter solutions for reflux are antacids, but there are many different kinds of prescription drugs for reflux available. For those who do not embrace Western medicine, there are also many alternative ways to alleviate your reflux. Your doctor will be able to determine which options are best for you.