Gastroesophageal reflux disease, referred to as GERD or sometimes simply acid reflux or heartburn, is a condition in which the digestive juices in the stomach make contact with the esophagus. The lining of the stomach is coated with a thick mucus that prevents the digestive juices from burning or damaging the walls of the stomach. This acid is incredibly acidic, and if it comes into contact with other parts of our digestive tract like the esophagus, it can lead to a burning sensation. This is what’s going on when you’re experiencing heartburn.
The main difference between GERD and simple heartburn is that people tend to experience heartburn fairly rarely, while people with GERD tend to experience symptoms a couple times a week. GERD also encompasses people with severe acid reflux that occurs on almost a daily basis. One of the best ways to combat the problem is to identify what foods and situations lead to you experiencing heartburn. In many cases, GERD isn’t so much a disease as it is someone not observing their dietary habits and continually eating foods or drinking beverages that lead to them developing heartburn.
If this isn’t the case, there are also over-the-counter medications that can help. In very serious cases, people may need surgery or prescribed medications to help them manage the condition. If you’re wondering whether or not you’re suffering from GERD, then read this list of symptoms. It should be helpful for you to identify whether or not you’ve got the problem so you can decide whether or not you need to seek treatment.
Symptom #1: Burning Sensation in the Throat
The main symptom of GERD is heartburn, which leads to a sensation of burning in the throat. This occurs with the digestive juices that are normally kept in the stomach flow upwards and cause irritation and pain in the esophagus.
This symptom can usually be managed by carefully observing your diet and figuring out what foods that you’re eating are causing heartburn. Over-the-counter antacids can also be very useful in minimizing the discomfort associated with heartburn.