If you are suffering with the pain from acid reflux, you may be tempted to spend your hard-earned money on over-the-counter medications and prescription medications. Unfortunately, these methods do not work for everyone, can be expensive, cause serious side effects, and don’t provide quick relief. Luckily, there are other ways to find the answers on how to get rid of acid reflux naturally.
Heartburn and acid reflux
First, let’s start at the beginning. Heartburn and acid reflux are a digestive disorder that results in pain that manifests as a burning sensation in the chest, behind the sternum, and the throat. The actual cause of the disorder is not fully understood, although many factors play a role. Acid reflux occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) – a band of muscle that lies between the stomach and the food pipe – is weakened or fails to completely close. This allows stomach contents to back up into the esophagus causing painful heartburn. In addition, some foods actually trigger the contraction of the LES, so if you suffer from acid reflux, avoiding certain foods can alleviate symptoms and prevent further episodes.
Effective treatments for acid reflux
Fortunately, there are many effective treatments for acid reflux, including lifestyle changes, natural remedies, or taking prescribed medications. For example, lifestyle changes can include drinking more water, losing weight, quitting smoking, and exercising more. Certain drugs, such as antacids and citrus juices, may help reduce the symptoms of heartburn or even help to dissolve it entirely. Herbal remedies are also quite helpful. For example, peppermint tea is a natural remedy that reduces the symptoms of heartburn and can be taken in both hot and cold drinks.
Lifestyle and dietary
However, for those people who suffer with chronic acid reflux disease (GERD), lifestyle and dietary changes may not be enough to prevent future bouts. In such cases, more drastic measures may need to be taken. For example, physicians may recommend stomach and duodenal surgeries to help alleviate symptoms. These types of surgeries, called ambulatory bariatric surgeries, are used to remove the excessive amount of stomach tissue that is attached to the LES. The surgery itself will often provide effective relief of symptoms immediately.
If these treatments are not sufficient, physicians may recommend medications to help control the symptoms of acid reflux. One of these medications is Proton-Pump Inhibitors. These medications block the pump function of the LES. By preventing stomach acids from entering the esophagus, Proton-Pump Inhibitors help to improve the functioning of the LES. In addition, they relax the lower esophageal sphincter, allowing only small amounts of digestive acids to remain inside the stomach.
When undergoing how to get rid of acid reflux surgery, a large dose of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) may be prescribed. The most commonly used NSAID is ibuprofen. To prevent stomach ulcers and bleeding, aspirin is also usually combined with an anti-inflammatory agent. In order to be sure that the NSAIDs take effect, patients are advised to take the medication at bedtime.
How to get rid of acid reflux by making dietary
How to get rid of acid reflux by making dietary changes should also be considered. Many physicians recommend that patients suffering from chronic heartburn or acid reflux eat smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day instead of the traditional three large meals. In addition to aiding in the healing of the gastric contents, this method of eating reduces the amount of food that is absorbed into the body. In patients that have difficulty controlling their urges to burp, it is also suggested that they limit the consumption of citrus fruits and beverages, which stimulate acid reflux, to two drinks per day. For patients with mild acid reflux, this may be all that is necessary to control the disease.
Herbal supplements in order to control acid reflux
Some physicians recommend taking herbal supplements in order to control acid reflux. Garlic is often recommended for this purpose because it has a high content of sulfur. It has been found to be as effective as an over the counter antacid in reducing the inflammation of the stomach and has no known side effects. Other herbs that may be helpful in the treatment of acid reflux are fennel and ginger. Both of these herbs act as antacids and can be taken in capsule form.