Treatment for GERD
Treatment for GERD is complex. Sometimes, treatment for acid reflux is a real challenge. Your doctor will likely recommend trying lifestyle modifications and over-the-counter medications first. If you don’t get relief after a few weeks, your doctor may recommend prescription medication or surgery.
OTC medications—the most common treatment for GERD
Antacids neutralize stomach acid.
For instance, antacids such as Mylanta, Rolaids, and Tums can deliver rapid relief.
But antacids alone will not cure gastric acid-damaged esophagitis. Overuse of certain antacids can cause side effects such as diarrhea or sometimes kidney problems.
Drugs that reduce acid production.
The list of those drugs, aka H-2 receptor blockers, includes cimetidine (Tagamet HB), famotidine (Pepcid AC), and nizatidine (Axid AR). H-2 receptor blockers don’t work as fast as antacids, but they provide more extended relief and can reduce stomach acid production for up to 12 hours. Stronger versions are available by prescription.
Medicines that block acid production and heal the esophagus.
These pharmaceutical medications, known as proton pump inhibitors, are robust acid blockers and much more potent than H-2 receptor blockers. Also, these remedies aim to heal damaged esophageal tissues. Over-the-counter proton pump inhibitors include lansoprazole (Prevacid 24 HR) and omeprazole (Prilosec OTC, Zegerid OTC).
However, the FDA recommended using these medications for two weeks. Watch the video below to learn about the possible consequences of using these medications.
Prescription H-2 receptor blockers.
These include prescription famotidine (Pepcid) and nizatidine. These drugs are generally well-tolerated, but long-term use may be associated with a slightly increased risk of vitamin B-12 deficiency and bone fractures.
Prescription proton pump inhibitors.
These include esomeprazole (Nexium), lansoprazole (Prevacid), omeprazole (Prilosec, Zegerid), pantoprazole (Protonix), rabeprazole (Aciphex), and dexlansoprazole (Dexilant). Although generally well-tolerated, these drugs can cause diarrhea, headaches, nausea, and vitamin B-12 deficiency. Chronic use may increase the risk of hip fracture.
Drugs to strengthen the lower esophageal sphincter.
Baclofen can relieve GERD by reducing the frequency of lower esophageal sphincter releases. Side effects can include fatigue or nausea.
Surgery and other treatments for GERD
GERD can usually be controlled with medications. But if medications don’t help or you want to avoid long-term medication use, your doctor may recommend:
The surgeon attaches and sticks the top of the stomach to the lower esophageal sphincter to tighten the sphincter’s muscle and avoid reflux. Fundoplication is usually performed using a minimally invasive (laparoscopic) method. The upper stomach wrap may be partial or complete.
A ring of tiny magnetic balls is wrapped around the junction of the stomach and esophagus. The magnetic attraction between the balls is strong enough to keep the junction closed against boiling acid but weak enough to allow food to pass through. LINX is usually implanted using minimally aggressive surgical procedures.
Transoral fundoplication without incision (TIF).
This new procedure involves lifting the lower esophageal sphincter by creating a partial wrap around the lower esophagus with polypropylene fasteners. TIF is performed through the mouth using an endoscope and does not require a surgical incision. Its advantages include a fast recovery time and high tolerance.
If you have a large hiatal hernia, TIF alone will not work. However, this is possible if TIF is combined with laparoscopic hiatal hernia repair.
What is Acid reflux?
It’s a common condition characterized by heartburn and burning pain in your lower chest area. GERD occurs when your stomach acid flows back up into your food pipe. If you suffer from acid reflux more than two times a week, it’ll be diagnosed as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). For effective treatment, many people see great results from home remedies for acid reflux.
What is acid reflux (GastroEsophageal Reflux Disease) caused by?
Hiatal hernia, a stomach abnormality, is one of the most common causes of acid reflux. This happens when your stomach’s LES and upper part move above the diaphragm. The diaphragm is responsible for keeping the acid in your stomach. However, if you’re suffering from a hiatal hernia, the acid can move upward into your esophagus, leading to acid reflux symptoms.
Some other common causes of acid reflux are:
- Taking ibuprofen, aspirin, certain muscle relaxers, and some blood pressure medications
- Pregnancy can also put you at a higher risk for acid reflux
- Consuming particular beverages, such as tea, coffee, carbonated drinks, and alcohol, can lead to acid reflux.
- Consuming certain food items such as onions, garlic, mint, chocolate, tomato, citrus, fatty or spicy food
- Eating right before bedtime
- Being obese or overweight
- Lying down right after a meal
- Consuming large meals
It would be best to avoid all the above-mentioned factors to prevent acid reflux. Many people see excellent results from natural remedies for acid reflux.
What Are the Symptoms of Acid Reflux?
There are various symptoms of acid reflux, such as:
- Chronic sore throat, hoarseness, dry cough, and wheezing
- Weight loss for no apparent reason
- Dysphagia: a sensation that food is stuck in the throat
- Bloody vomiting
- Black or bloody stools
Home remedies for acid reflux: an effective and safe treatment for GERD
Home remedies for acid reflux are popular, affordable, and effective. Many people take gastroesophageal reflux disease, aka GERD, lightly, but if left untreated, it can lead to severe complications and even increase your chances of cancer.
It’s a fairly common condition, and in the US alone, it’s estimated that 1 in 5 adults suffer from this problem, and it can affect men, women, and even children. If you’re suffering from this condition, you don’t have to pump your body full of allopathic drugs, which can sometimes cause side effects. Natural and home remedies for acid reflux can remedy your condition safely and holistically.
Baking Soda is the most popular home remedy for acid reflux.
Many people use baking soda for the natural treatment of acid reflux. Baking soda can neutralize your stomach acid so that you won’t experience a burning sensation, even if you have acid reflux. If you want to use this natural treatment for GERD, combine one teaspoon of baking soda with 8 ounces of water, mix it well, and consume it. You can consume this home remedy whenever you experience acid reflux symptoms, but don’t exceed more than seven daily doses. Additionally, it would help if you did not use this natural treatment for acid reflux for more than a week, as it can lead to symptoms like nausea and swelling.
Fruits are vital nutrients that are an essential part of home remedies for acid reflux.
Certain fruits, like bananas and apples, can also be effective home remedies for acid reflux. Bananas have potent natural antacid properties that can counteract GERD. Daily consumption of bananas as a natural treatment for acid reflux can not only cure your current symptoms but also prevent future acid reflux symptoms. Apple is another fruit that’s an excellent natural treatment for GERD. To prevent acid reflux flare-ups at night, consume an apple a few hours before retiring. Other fruits that can be home remedies for acid reflux include watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew.
Other forms of Natural Treatment for GERD
The category of home remedies for acid reflux includes acupuncture, homeopathy, herbs, and more.
If you’re suffering from the above-mentioned symptoms, various natural remedies for GERD can minimize the symptoms without any adverse effects on your body.
Use natural GERD remedies that are gentle, safe, and have scientific support if you want relief from acid reflux.
Acupuncture: an ancient Chinese natural treatment for acid reflux
Acupuncture for GERD is one of the most effective alternative treatments for acid reflux. Acupuncture doesn’t just concentrate on your symptoms but on your whole self. By placing very thin needles in particular points of your body, acupuncture can encourage your body’s natural healing system.
Research shows that acupuncture for GERD can enhance oesophageal function in GERD patients and reduce symptoms. Many types of research show that acupuncture for acid reflux can be successful even when drugs fail. Acupuncture has no side effects, and in the hands of a trained practitioner, it does not cause bleeding or bruising. Acupuncture can even be combined with other natural and home remedies for acid reflux to increase the chances of positive effects.
Herbs for GERD: a popular, effective, and safe natural treatment for GERD
Various herbal remedies for GERD can safely and naturally relieve acid reflux symptoms. Some herbal remedies for acid reflux include aloe vera, ginger, and chamomile. Aloe vera is rich in calming properties and can reduce stomach irritation. You can also try ginger and chamomile tea, which reduce heartburn symptoms.
However, certain herbs can counteract medications, so you must consult a doctor or herbalist before trying these remedies.
Homeopathic remedies for GERD—the #1 natural treatment for GERD
Homeopathic remedies for acid reflux can also provide relief without any adverse effects. Like other alternative medicine, homeopathy doesn’t just concentrate on your symptoms but on your whole self. It doesn’t use harmful chemicals but encourages your body’s natural healing system. Homeopathy can not only remedy your current symptoms but prevent future problems as well.
Some common homeopathic remedies for heartburn include Carbo Vegetabilis, Lycopodium, Phosphorus, Nux Vomica, Robinia, Iris Versicolor, and Natrum phosphorica. These remedies are often combined, and treatment can be personalized according to your condition.
Homeopathy has no known side effects, making it suitable for every demographic. You can even combine homeopathic remedies for acid reflux with other natural and allopathic remedies to increase the chances of positive results.
For the best results, start natural treatment for GERD as soon as possible. The above-mentioned home remedies for acid reflux can provide excellent results without the danger of side effects. However, if you still don’t see any positive effects after trying them out, you must consult your doctor, as it can indicate something more serious.