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Acid reflux and heartburn

Get acid reflux medication with an online prescription

Acid reflux is a common condition caused by acid from the stomach travelling up the throat. It is usually characterised by heartburn, a burning feeling in the chest. Chronic acid reflux is called gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD).

Acid reflux treatment can help alleviate uncomfortable symptoms such as heartburn and chest pain. You can buy clinically proven medication online from euroClinix.

Medically reviewed by
Dr. Mahesh Chhaya MBBS Written by our editorial team
Last reviewed 31 Mar 2021

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What is acid reflux?

Acid reflux is a condition that causes heartburn, often experienced as a burning or tightening sensation in the chest. Symptoms vary between people, ranging from mild to severe.

Heartburn is quite common, and not something to worry about if it only happens occasionally, but if you find that it happens more than once a week, or your symptoms are particularly severe, you should seek medical attention. Over time, this condition can damage the oesophagus and lead to more serious health concerns.

What causes acid reflux?

This condition is caused by stomach acid rising out of the stomach and into the oesophagus.

During the process of digestion, a sphincter at the bottom of the oesophagus opens to let swallowed food pass through to the stomach. After food has passed through, it closes, and cells in the stomach release acid to digest the food.

When somebody has acid reflux, the sphincter does not work as it should, and the acid that is meant to stay in the stomach rises up into the oesophagus. This causes inflammation and heartburn.

Some people may find they experience worse symptoms from certain types of food, eating large meals, or eating before laying down.

Certain medications may also worsen symptoms. However, if you think this may be the case, talk to your doctor before stopping any medications.

What are the symptoms of acid reflux?

Heartburn, a burning sensation in the middle of the chest, is often the main symptom.

Other symptoms can include:

  • cough
  • an acidic taste in the mouth
  • hoarseness
  • sore throat
  • difficulty or pain when swallowing
  • chest pain
  • nausea and vomiting
  • bad breath
  • bloating and belching

How can I prevent acid reflux?

Some ways to prevent and reduce acid reflux symptoms include:

  • eating smaller, evenly spaced meals
  • eating slowly
  • wearing clothes that fit loosely around the waist
  • waiting a few hours after eating before laying down or going to bed
  • raising the head of your bed

Should I avoid certain foods if I have acid reflux?

Some people find that certain foods will trigger symptoms. Keeping a food diary can help you identify and avoid these triggers.

The type of food you eat may contribute to acid reflux symptoms.

Common trigger foods include:

  • high-fat foods
  • spicy foods
  • citrus fruits
  • tomatoes
  • garlic and onions
  • alcohol
  • coffee or tea
  • carbonated beverages

Does milk help acid reflux?

Although milk has long been heralded as a remedy for symptoms of heartburn and acid reflux, it is unclear if it is actually effective at providing relief. Some evidence suggests that calcium in milk may alleviate heartburn, but the fat in milk may have a negative impact by stimulating the production of stomach acid.

If your symptoms are very frequent or severe, you may be prescribed medication. There are a number of different types of treatments, and the dose will be decided on your condition.

How can I treat acid reflux?

Symptoms can be treated with lifestyle modifications and medication.

Over-the-counter treatments include antacids, alginates, and proton-pump inhibitors.

Antacids provide quick relief by neutralising stomach acid, but do not treat the underlying cause. Alginates produce a coating which protects your oesophagus from stomach acid. Low-dose proton-pump inhibitors work by reducing stomach acid, but are recommended for short-term use only.

If you need to use these medications quite frequently, or if they become less effective, your GP may advise that you take a prescription medication.

What is the best prescription medication for acid reflux?

Proton-pump inhibitors and H2 receptor antagonists are two prescription medications commonly prescribed for acid reflux. Both of these treatments work by reducing stomach acid. Your doctor will decide which medication is most suitable for you depending on your condition and medical history.

Commonly prescribed proton pump inhibitors available for purchase on euroClinix include Omeprazole, Lansoprazole, Nexium, Esomeprazole , Rabeprazole and Pantoprazole.

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