If you are reading this post chances are you are currently suffering from acid reflux disease or you know someone who has it. I hope the acid reflux treatment options I will be covering will help you find the relief you are currently looking for.
Due to the high prevalence of acid reflux disease in developed countries,a lot of research has being put into it and a lot of treatment options have being developed over the years to help patients of this epidemic.
The acid treatment options I will be covering are:
- Lifestyle modifications
Changing Your Lifestyle may as Well be the Best Acid Reflux Treatment for You.
The following treatments have help alot of GERD patients get their acid reflux under control.
- Weight loss: According to a post writen by Kathleen M. Zelman, MPH, RD, LD and reviewed by of Louise Chang, MD on Heartburn? Lose Weight for Relief “Studies have shown that adults (both men and women) who gain a few extra pounds can increase their risk of heartburn – but losing weight can spell relief”.
it is not very clear yet how weight has an effect on GERD patients, but researchers says that weight loss around the belly will reduce pressure on your stomach.
When you are overweight the extra fat puts pressure on your stomach, pushing stomach content into the esophagus.
- Certain Foods: such as Alcohol, coffee, tomatoes, chocolate, or fatty or spicy food can trigger your acid reflux symptoms. Some people symptoms gets worse after eating any of the foods above. If you notice this, try to eliminate such foods from your diet.
- Eating smaller meals more frequently: avoid eating large meals and make sure to eat 3 to 4 hours before you go to bed.
- Stop smoking: giving up your smoking habits can help you greatly. It is believed that nicotine in tobacco can can cause the lower esophageal sphincter which keeps the acid in the stomach to relax thereby allowing acid to move into the esophagus.
- Put gravity to work for you: Doctor are now recommending wedge pillows for acid reflux and Bed Elevating inclined insects to GERD patients to help them have a comfortable night sleep. They help keep the acid in your stomach while you sleep.
- Home remedies: such as baking soda do help give immediate relief to some patients.
So the treatments listed above are the natural and free ways to help you with your reflux disease.
Medications for Acid Reflux Treatment
There are quite a number of medications available to be use to treat this reflux disease.
- over-the-counter medications: There are now many over the counter medications now available to relief you from mild to moderate acid reflux. antacids such as Maalox and among others neutralizes the effects of the stomach acid.
Alginates such as Gaviscon work differently. They work non-systemically to form a protective layer in your stomach that helps block acid from splashing up into your esophagus.They work best if taken just after finishing a meal.
Caution: these anticids should not be taken at same time as other medications because the can hinder the proper absorption of other medicines. Check with your doctor first.
- Proton -pump inhibitors (PPIs) : They work in prescription bases. If after using the over the counter-medications and they do not help your doctor might put you on this prescription. Proton-pump inhibitors work by reducing the amount of acid your stomach produce.
- H2-receptor antagonists (H2RA) : If your acid reflux symptoms are not responding to the PPIs, your doctor may put you on the H2RA in conjunction with the PPIs.
The H2-blockers help reduce the amount of acid your stomach produces by blocking the signal to your brain that tells the body to make acid. Some of these medications can be purchased over-the-counter but not all.
This is the last alternate to treat your GERD. Doctors only recommend it when the above acid reflux treatments do not work or you are on a long term medications or you have a recurrent GERD.
Even though surgery may relief your GERD, there are some complications that may come with it. Such as:
- an inability to burp
- difficulty swallowing
Surgical and endoscopic procedures used to treat GERD include:
- endoscopic injection of bulking agents
- laparoscopic nissen fundoplication (LNF)
- endoscopic augmentation with hydrogel implants
- endoluminal gastroplication
- endoscopic radiofrequency ablation
- laparoscopic insertion of a magnetic bead band
Endoscopic injection of bulking agents
This surgery process is the process whereby the surgeon injects a filler to where the esophagus meet the stomach. This narrows down the junction to prevent acid from leaking up the stomach.
Laparoscopic nissen fundoplication (LNF)
This treatment uses “keyhole surgery”, avoiding the need for a large incision. It is the most common surgical treatment used for GERD.When performing this treatment, the surgeon, wraps the upper part of your stomach around the esophagus and this creates a collar.This helps tighten your lower oesophageal sphincter (LOS), to stop acid moving back out of your stomach.
Endoscopic augmentation with hydrogel implants
In this treatment technique, the surgeon uses a material flexible plastic gel that’s very similar to living tissue. This technique is similar to the Endoscopic injection of bulking agents treatment except the materials used in both treatments are different.
The endoscopic augmentation with hydrogel implants is fairly new and has got some complications; the hydrogels sometimes comes out of the gastro-oesophageal junction. Improvements are being made on it.
With this surgical technique, the surgeon used an endoscope to sew a series of pleats (folds) into the lower esophageal sphincter (LOS). This process restrict the opening of the lower esophageal sphincter opening thereby preventing acid from moving up into the stomach.
endoscopic radiofrequency ablation
With the endoscopic radiofrequency ablation, a tiny balloon is lowered down an endoscope to your gastro-oesophageal junction. The inserted balloon is inflated once it arrives and the outside of the balloon creates pulse heat and the heat creates small scars, which narrow your esophagus.
Laparoscopic insertion of a magnetic bead band
Laparoscopic insertion of a magnetic bead band was introduced in 2011. It is quite expensive treatment. This acid reflux treatment technique involves the use of magnetic beads to reinforce the LOS muscle and this magnetic beads help keep it closed when at rest, preventing stomach acid leaking upwards. The LOS opens normally when swallowing. It seems to be effective in the short term but nobody knows its future yet.