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What is acid reflux? Acid reflux, also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), is a chronic condition where stomach acid flows back into the esophagus, causing irritation and discomfort.
Common Symptoms: Acid reflux often presents with symptoms such as heartburn, regurgitation, chest pain, and a sour taste in the mouth. It can also lead to chronic coughing, hoarseness, and difficulty swallowing.
Triggers: Certain foods, lifestyle factors, and obesity can trigger or worsen acid reflux. Common triggers include spicy or fatty foods, caffeine, alcohol, smoking, and lying down immediately after eating.
Complications: If left untreated, acid reflux can lead to complications like esophagitis (inflammation of the esophagus), Barrett’s esophagus (a precancerous condition), and even esophageal cancer in severe cases.
Treatment Options: Treatment for acid reflux may include lifestyle modifications, dietary changes, over-the-counter antacids, and prescription medications to reduce acid production. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to repair the lower esophageal sphincter.
If you’re experiencing symptoms of acid reflux, it’s important to consult with a specialist like Dr. Mark M. Davidson, MD, to determine the best course of action and prevent potential complications.