Acid reflux; causes, risk factors, and OTC remedies

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Acid reflux causes heartburn, which is characterized by a burning ache in the lower chest.

This is what happens when stomach acid backs up into the food stream.

When acid reflux occurs more than twice a week, it is called gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

GERD is most widespread in Western countries, affecting 20 to 30 percent of the population, according to reliable sources.

Heartburn that persists can lead to significant consequences.

 

Causes of GERD

When some of the stomach's acid content rushes up into the esophagus, or gullet, it forces food down from the mouth, causing acid reflux.

Hydrochloric acid, a powerful acid, is found in the stomach. It aids in the digestion of food while also protecting against infections like germs.

Although the stomach lining has developed to protect it from the corrosive acid, the esophagus has not.

The gastroesophageal sphincter is a muscle ring that generally serves as a valve, allowing food into the stomach but not backs up into the esophagus. When this valve malfunctions, stomach contents regurgitate into the esophagus, causing acid reflux symptoms like heartburn.

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Risk factors

GERD affects people of all ages for a variety of reasons, some of which are unknown. It is frequently related to a lifestyle aspect, but it can also be due to unavoidable circumstances.

GERD is caused by the upper portion of the stomach entering the chest cavity through a hole in the diaphragm.

Other potential dangers are easier to manage:

·        obesity (number one)

·        Tobacco use (active or passive)

·        a lack of physical activity

·        asthma medicines, calcium-channel blockers, antihistamines, pain relievers, sedatives, and antidepressants

Due to the increased strain on the internal organs, pregnancy can also induce acid reflux.

Acid reflux has been connected to the following foods and dietary habits like caffeine, alcohol, a high-salt diet, a low-fiber diet, eating large meals, lying down within 2 to 3 hours of having a meal, and ingesting chocolate, carbonated beverages, and acidic liquids

According to a new study, dietary changes may be just as helpful as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) in managing acid reflux.

 

OTC remedies

OTC treatments to lower the acidity of the stomach contents are available for persons who have heartburn or indigestion occasionally, maybe as a result of occasional food and drink triggers.

Antacids are liquid and tablet formulations with identical effectiveness. There are dozens of brands available.

They may not be appropriate for everyone, and any requirement for long-term use should be explored with a physician.

Antacids reduce the acidity of the stomach contents, providing quick but temporary relief.

Calcium carbonate, sodium bicarbonate, aluminum, and magnesium hydroxide are some of the chemical components found in them.

Content created and supplied by: Wykin (via Opera News )

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