Symptoms of Acid Reflux and GERD
Acid reflux is a condition that causes throat burning that rises upward from the chest, especially after bending over, lying down or eating. Other symptoms include an acidic or sour taste at the back of the throat. Some people claim that they feel as though food is stuck in their throat or that they can’t swallow properly. In some cases, chest pain is reported.
The throat is affected because the esophageal muscle is weakened and is therefore unable to close tightly. When this occurs, contents from the stomach, including acid, rise back up into the throat, causing discomfort. Heartburn resulting from acid reflux occurs most often in people who have Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD). GERD is a chronic condition that can have new symptoms over time, including the constant need to clear one’s throat, hoarseness, coughing, the feeling that there’s a lump in the throat, choking and frequent sore throats. More serious conditions can also develop as a result of acid reflux, including pneumonia and infections of the voice box and upper esophagus.
Chronic acid reflux may result in pulmonary fibrosis, a condition in which the tissue of the lungs thickens due to injury or infection. GERD can make asthma symptoms worse and therefore needs to be monitored by your Albany, GA doctor. Dietary changes and medication that neutralizes or reduces stomach acid can prevent future symptoms. Some people also report that eating smaller meals and identifying and avoiding trigger foods can help keep symptoms at bay. Surgical procedures are also available for people who don’t experience relief from dietary changes and medication.
If left untreated, GERD and acid reflux can cause damage to the lining of the esophagus. This damage can make it difficult to swallow, and can even result in esophageal cancer. Another condition, called esophagitis, causes ulcers and bleeding. For these reasons, it’s very important to see a doctor if you have symptoms associated with acid reflux and GERD.