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FAQ: Acid Reflux

What does heartburn feel like?

Heartburn, also known as acid reflux, feels like a burning feeling in your chest just behind the breastbone. Acid reflux symptoms can last from a few minutes to a few hours. While the terms heartburn and acid reflux are used interchangeably, heartburn is actually a symptoms of acid reflux.

What are acid reflux symptoms?

The main symptoms of acid reflux are heartburn, an unpleasant sour taste in your mouth. Acid reflux can also cause coughing, hiccups, a hoarse voice, bad breath, bloating and feeling sick.

What makes you more likely to get acid reflux?

You’re more likely to develop acid reflux if you’re overweight or obese. You’re also more likely to get acid reflux if you snack close to bedtime, each a heavy meal and lie down, eat large meals, or eat certain foods. Smoking also leads to acid reflux. Being pregnant, or taking aspirin, ibuprofen, certain muscle relaxers or blood pressure medications can also lead you to have acid reflux.

What is gastroesophageal reflux disease?

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GORD) is a common condition where stomach acid travels up into the oesophagus. Heartburn is a symptom of GORD.

What causes acid reflux (heartburn)?

There can be many causes of acid reflux. The most notable causes of acid reflux are being overweight, pregnancy, consuming tobacco, alcohol, coffee, chocolate, or spicy or acidic foods.

How do indigestion and acid reflux differ?

Indigestion involves the digestive process, while acid reflux is when stomach acid travels up the oesophagus causing discomfort.

What are some home remedies for heartburn?

When it comes to how to stop heartburn, there are some things you can try. If you know you suffer from acid reflux, you should avoid alcohol, coffee, chocolate, tomatoes and fatty or spicy foods.

What are ways to manage acid reflux?

If you are overweight and suffer from acid reflux, losing weight can help you manage your symptoms. If you are a smoker, stopping smoking can also help you reduce your acid reflux symptoms. There are some foods you should avoid to help prevent heartburn. You can also take proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). PPIs are a clinically proven way of treating acid reflux.

How long can acid reflux last?

Acid reflux symptoms can last up to two hours or sometimes even longer. To alleviate acid reflux symptoms, you should try taking medication. Proton pump inhibitors help reduce the amount of acid in the stomach which helps alleviate heartburn.

Why is my acid reflux so bad in the morning and how do I get rid of it?

In some people, acid reflux can be quite bad in the morning. This is because you don’t swallow in your sleep, which causes acid to sit in the oesophagus overnight. Try eating smaller portions at dinner and sleeping with your head slightly elevated. These should help prevent acid reflux in the morning.

Is there any way to treat acid reflux permanently?

No. The best way to treat acid reflux is to know and understand your triggers to help prevent it.

What are the most effective solutions to acid reflux disease?

While there is no cure for acid reflux, you can take medication to help manage your condition. You can also stop smoking and try losing weight to help prevent acid reflux.

Is getting rid of acid reflux temporary?

Generally, acid reflux treatments only work temporarily. However, you can make some lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking and losing weight to help manage your acid reflux.

Does drinking milk help acid indigestion or heartburn?

Drinking full-fat milk may actually make acid reflux worse. This is because fattier foods relax the lower esophageal sphincter making it easier for acid to travel up the oesophagus.

Why does bread / toast give me heartburn?

Overeating any food can cause heartburn. If you are experiencing acid reflux from bread or toast it is possible that you are overeating these foods. If you lie down or bend over right after eating you are also likely to experience acid reflux symptoms.

How do you get rid of heartburn?

You can take medication to get rid of heartburn and acid reflux. You can also avoid certain foods to help prevent acid reflux from occuring in the first place.

How does acid reflux (heartburn) medicine work?

The most efficient heartburn medications are proton pump inhibitors. They work by reducing the amount of acid being produced by your stomach. This then limits the amount of stomach acid that travels up the oesophagus causing heartburn and other acid reflux symptoms.

What are proton pump inhibitors?

Proton pump inhibitors are medications that treat acid reflux. They relieve acid reflux symptoms such as heartburn by reducing the amount of stomach acid that’s produced. This then prevents stomach acid from travelling up the oesophagus.

Why are proton pump inhibitors the best course of treatment for acid reflux?

Proton pump inhibitors are an effective way of treating acid reflux. You should also avoid any of your known acid reflux triggers, such as certain foods or habits (like smoking).