Gastroesophageal Reflux Disorder (GERD) is a digestive disorder. “Gastroesophageal” refers to the stomach and esophagus. “Reflux” is what happens when the lower esophageal ring is weakened and stomach contents flow back into the esophagus.
The 17th Annual GERD Awareness Week is November 20th through 26th, 2016. Yes, that’s the week of Thanksgiving — the day millions of Americans experience heartburn and acid reflux, which may or may not be related to GERD.
Is it heartburn or GERD?
Nearly everyone has experienced heartburn from things like a spicy meal or eating and drinking too much in one sitting. Yet heartburn is also the most common symptom of GERD. Talk to your doctor if:
- Heartburn occurs two or more times per week
- Heartburn worsens over time
- It wakes you from sleep
- Occasional heartburn has gone on for several years
- Discomfort or pain interferes with your daily activities
Symptoms of GERD include:
- Dysphagia (feels like food is sticking in the throat)
- Chronic sore throat
- Difficulty or pain when swallowing
- Inflammation of the gums
- Erosion of the enamel of the teeth
- Chronic irritation in the throat
- Hoarseness in the morning
- A sour taste and/or bad breath
Reducing the symptoms of GERD
Symptoms can be aggravated by a number of factors, including foods and medications. Some ways to reduce GERD symptoms include:
- Eat meals 2 to 3 hours before bed
- Decrease the size of portions
- Avoid heartburn triggers (keep a food diary to track of yours)
- Lose excess weight
- Stop smoking
- Avoid alcohol
Superior quality health care for GERD and so much more
Whether you’re experiencing chronic heartburn or other symptoms of GERD, need complete family care or are seeking specialized treatments, Pomona Valley Health Centers (PVHC) can help. Our experienced compassionate physicians are dedicated to providing excellent, patient-focused care that’s also efficient and convenient. We are proud to be affiliated with Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center, a regional leader with a legacy of 100 years of service.
To learn more or schedule an appointment, call 909-536-1493 or click here to use our online form.