5 Telltale Signs of GERD

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tomach problems are a never-ending list of one problem after another. Chronic stomach problems lead to more complications. There is no way a stomach issue will resolve on its own. If you leave the issue untreated for too long it can cause some serious health disorders.

Gastroenterologists in Islamabad will tell you the exact same thing. Such a serious issue is GERD also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease. GERD is a serious digestive issue whose symptoms resemble that of heartburn. 

Acid reflux might be normal but prolonged acid reflux is harmful to the body. GERD can happen due to multiple reasons that can cause pressure in the abdomen. The reflux is felt usually immediately after eating or lying down after eating.

Prolonged Heartburn

Heartburn usually goes away on its own. But sometimes prolonged heartburn can be a clear sign of GERD. Heartburn is a condition on its own, so sometimes it is hard to recognize whether or not its GERD. Occasional heartburn is normal. But persistent or chronic heartburn can be a cause to worry. 

The painful feeling and the burning sensation can put the body in distress. Certain foods or alcohol can be one of the triggers for heartburn. Usually, antacids are prescribed to counter heartburn, but for prolonged heartburn, a specialist will tell you what treatment option is available.   

Foul or Bitter Taste in the Mouth

What happens in a reflux action is that bile out of the stomach goes back up into the esophagus causing an overall bitter taste in the mouth. The acidic contents are usually the cause of this taste. Since it is a reflux action when the food and bile go back up, a burning sensation is felt all the way into the throat which produces excess saliva in the mouth.

If this happens frequently, then it is most definitely a sign of GERD and should not be taken lightly. The acid reflux can cause damage in the lining of the esophagus, or it can cause hiatal hernia or severe esophageal ulcers. If this is left untreated then it can cause a precancerous condition that puts you at risk of esophageal cancer. 

Difficulty Swallowing

The brightest and shining symptom of GERD is trouble swallowing food or water. As the food goes down the throat, the sensation of being stuck is felt. This condition (commonly known as dysphagia) along with acid reflux and heartburn most certainly means that you have GERD. 

Trouble swallowing leads to less consumed food or even skipping meals which leads to weight loss which ultimately could lead to malnutrition. Since you can’t keep the food down, the nutrients that our body needs start to deplete.

This may not always happen but like other symptoms, this might have its own trigger foods such as caffeine, or spicy foods. The triggers are first most to be avoided at all cost, secondly, small meals can be taken with a 3 to 4 hours gap in between. 

Chest Pain Mimicking Heart Attack

Sometimes the symptoms of GERD can be so intense, that you feel as if you are having a heart attack. Since the location of the heart is right with the esophagus, this can lead to some misunderstanding in recognizing the correct condition. 

Cardiac pains are often mistaken for GERD. To clear out this doubt, the first time a pain such as this is felt, it is recommended to consult with your physician at once. It is better to be safe than sorry.

Prolonged Coughing

Usually, prolonged coughing is a sign of tuberculosis or respiratory disorders but it can happen in the case of GERD as well. Because of the acid reflux, some food that you eat might end up in the lungs causing coughing, chest congestion, and pain in the throat while speaking. 

Since people don’t often connect coughing with GERD, it can take a while before you are finally diagnosed with GERD. Sometimes the symptoms can become quite serious and change from persistent coughing to that of asthma or pneumonia. 

To minimize coughing, it is recommended to avoid eating before bedtime or immediately lying down after eating. If coughing along with other symptoms is felt, you should talk to your doctor to get a proper diagnosis. 

GERD is a completely treatable cause but if treated on time. If you ignore all the signs and symptoms that your body has been trying to tell you, it can cause some serious complications for you in the future.

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