Gastroenterology and Nutrition of Central Florida
Gastroenterologists & Certified Nutritionists located in The Villages, Leesburg, & Wildwood, FL
That burning sensation you feel in your chest after you eat too much is acid reflux, which is a common gastrointestinal condition. Though you can treat acid reflux with over-the-counter antacids, if your acid reflux fails to improve with at-home care or occurs frequently, Nehme Gabriel, MD, and Raj Borade, MD, at Gastroenterology & Nutrition of Central Florida can help. To schedule a consultation, call the office in The Villages, Leesburg, or Brownwood Paddock Square in Wildwood, Florida, or book an appointment using the online scheduling tool.
Acid Reflux Q & A
What is acid reflux?
Acid reflux, or gastroesophageal reflux (GER), occurs when the acidic contents of your stomach flow up into your esophagus.
When you swallow food, the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which is a group of muscles that separates your stomach from your esophagus, relaxes to allow the food to pass into your stomach and then quickly tightens.
If your LES is weak or unable to close completely, the contents of your stomach reflux up, causing a burning sensation.
What are the symptoms of acid reflux?
Heartburn is the most common symptom of acid reflux. Other symptoms include:
- Sour taste in the back of your throat
- Food regurgitation
- Difficulty swallowing
With acid reflux, you may also experience chest pain, which may worsen when you lie down.
When should I seek medical help for acid reflux?
You can treat occasional acid reflux with over-the-counter (OTC) antacids. But you should seek medical care for your acid reflux if it occurs frequently or the OTC medications fail to alleviate your symptoms.
Acid reflux that occurs more than twice a week may indicate you have a more chronic condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
Without medical intervention, frequent acid reflux may increase your risk of developing more serious health conditions such as esophageal strictures, Barrett’s esophagus, or esophagitis (inflammation of the esophagus).
The experienced gastroenterologists at Gastroenterology & Nutrition of Central Florida conduct in-depth clinical evaluations to fully assess gastrointestinal health, so you get the most effective treatment for your acid reflux.
How is acid reflux treated?
Gastroenterology & Nutrition of Central Florida develops individualized treatment plans for acid reflux based on the severity and frequency of symptoms, degree of esophageal damage, and medical history.
Initially, your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes to help reduce symptoms, such as:
- Eating smaller meals
- Avoiding foods that trigger symptoms (e.g., high-fat foods, spicy food)
- Not eating too close to bedtime
- Losing weight
- Nutrition counseling
If lifestyle changes fail to alleviate your symptoms, your gastroenterologist may recommend medications that decrease the acidity in your stomach and improve the movement of food through your gastrointestinal tract.
They also perform various procedures to address esophageal damage from acid reflux, including esophageal dilation for esophageal strictures and HALO-ablation of Barrett’s esophagus.
Acid reflux is common and normal on occasion. But if you experience acid reflux on a regular basis, call Gastroenterology & Nutrition of Central Florida, or book an appointment online.
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