Frequently Asked Questions about Heartburn

Many people will suffer from heartburn at some point in their lives. It’s estimated that 40% of all American adults have experienced heartburn within the last month alone. Learning the different causes and ways to manage heart burn may help answer some of your own heartburn related questions.

Should I talk to my doctor about heartburn or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) symptoms?

Talking to your doctor here in Atlanta is always a good idea, especially if your heartburn symptoms occur more than once a week or didn’t start until after the age of 40. Also, if you are taking over the counter medication for longer than three months, you should speak with your doctor.

What can bring on an acid reflux attack?

There are many things that can cause acid reflux. A few common causes include pregnancy, obesity, acidic foods, fatty foods, overeating, eating too soon before bed, smoking and chocolate.

• What are GERD’s symptoms?

Symptoms can include a sour taste in your mouth, vomiting small amounts of liquid into your mouth, bloating, and nausea. Many patients also experience a feeling of their being a small lump in your throat, as well as chest pain.

• How is GERD treated?

GERD can be treated in a number of ways. Sometimes over the counter medications like TUMs will be recommended. GERD can also be treated with lifestyle changes such as losing excess weight, quitting smoking and avoiding foods that trigger your symptoms.

• What complications can arise from GERD?

Complications can include difficulty swallowing, asthma, chronic coughing, esophageal cancer and Barrett’s esophagus, a condition where the esophageal lining is damaged by acid.

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