(GERD) Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease and GERD Symptoms
You may have experienced it -- that acidic feeling rising up your throat after you eat something you probably shouldn't have. It could just be a little indigestion, but if it's happening on a regular basis, it might be GERD.
What is GERD? It stands for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, and is often experienced with heartburn. If you're aware of the symptoms you can talk to your
GERD is a term that describes the process of digestion gone wrong. It results when contents from the stomach, such as gastric acid and food, chronically flow up into the esophagus. There is a muscle located where the esophagus joins the stomach. When this muscle is relaxed or weakened, it's unable to do its usual job of keeping stomach contents from flowing upward into the esophagus. There are certain factors, medications, and conditions that can contribute to the weakening of this muscle. Lifescript.com provides a list of the causes of GERD.
If you are experiencing symptoms of GERD, you should discuss them with your doctor. They differ from regular reflux or heartburn in that they must occur on a regular or chronic basis. If your doctor suspects GERD, he or she may order tests to diagnose the condition. Once the diagnosis has been made, a GERD diet is in order. You will most likely need to refrain from trigger foods and beverages, such as alcohol, fatty and spicy foods, and citrus fruits, among other things.
There is a lot that can be done to minimize the symptoms of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease. Understanding how it works and getting a proper diagnosis are the first steps toward treatment. For more information, visit the American Gastroenterological Associations website at www.gastro.org.