Acid reflex (also known as GERD) is a condition that’s characterized by the stomach acid traveling back up and into the esophagus. As the acid begins to reach the esophagus, it may create a strong burning sensation along with an unpleasant taste in the back of the mouth. Some people brush acid reflux off as a minor condition with no real health concerns, but studies have directly linked it with several forms of esophageal cancer.
It’s estimated that nearly 1 in 10 adults exhibit symptoms of this condition on a daily basis. The most common symptoms include regurgitation and heartburn, while less common symptoms include excessive saliva production, nausea, coughing, pain when swallowing. Acid reflux occurs in men, women and children of all ages and background. Pregnant women, however, see the highest rates at 80%.
For a better understanding of acid reflux, let’s first talk about what happens when you eat food or drink a beverage. When you’re sitting down at the kitchen table enjoying a meal, the food and beverage you consume travels from your mouth down a hollowed tube known as the esophagus. It continues to make its way down the esophagus once you swallow until it reaches a valve flap of muscle fibers (known as the Lower Esophageal Sphincter). This valve plays a critical role in the body’s overall digestive process, as it prevents food in the stomach from re-entering the esophagus.
In a normal ‘healthy’ body, the Lower Esophageal Sphincter will keep food within the confines of the stomach while it’s being digested. However, if it’s unable to perform this task, small bits of food, beverage and stomach acid can travel back through the esophagus, causing acid reflex.
So, what causes acid reflex? There are many different possible causes of this condition, one of which being a hiatal hernia. Hiatal hernias occur when part of the stomach protrudes through the Lower Esophageal Sphincter, essentially opening the valve for food to re-enter. Thankfully, cases of acid reflex involving a hiatal hernia are treatable with the assistance of a professional chiropractor. They can oftentimes manipulate the herniating stomach back down into its normal position without expensive or painful surgery.
Certain prescription medications are also known to cause acid reflex. If you believe your acid reflex is the direct result of a a new medication, talk with your doctor to see what alternatives they recommend. Prescription medications affect everyone differently, and while some people can take a certain medication without any ill side effects, you may exhibit signs of acid reflex from taking the same medication.
A professional chiropractor can oftentimes aid in cases of acid reflux. Whether your condition is minor or severe, schedule an appointment with a chiropractor for professional guidance on how to treat your acid reflex.
Give us a call at 404-687-2382 to schedule an appointment today.Share