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What Is The Best Medicine For Heartburn And Indigestion

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What Is Best Medication For Heartburn?

Self-medicating with over-the-counter heartburn drugs can mask underlying health problems. Frequent burning or pain in the upper abdomen or chest can signal an ulcer or even esophageal cancer. Some people mistake pain from gallstones or heart disease for heartburn. So before starting any heartburn drug, see a doctor to rule out other health issues.

Talk To Your Doctor About Acid Reducing Drugs

The bottom line in picking medicine for persistent heartburn is that no class of drugs should be taken regularly for long periods of time. If your heartburn has persisted past a couple of weeks, and if it is more frequent than two days a week, you should consult with your doctor to get a better idea of what might be going on and what you can do to treat it.

It is especially important to talk to your healthcare provider if you were taking Zantac. This ranitidine-based drug has been pulled from the market by the FDA over the presence of potential cancer-causing agents. If you had been relying on Zantac and now need to search for a new drug to help control your heartburn, seeking medical advice from a qualified gastroenterologist is strongly recommended.

Though it could be tempting to keep taking antacids or other over-the-counter drugs just to manage your symptoms, this is not a good long-term strategy. GERD and other conditions like it can be the result of serious issues in your gastrointestinal tract, and finding the right diagnosis can be crucial. Not only could identifying proper diagnosis and treatment bring lasting relief, but it might save you from more serious issues such as cancer.

Southern Cross Medical Library

The purpose of the Southern Cross Medical Library is to provide information of a general nature to help you better understand certain medical conditions. Always seek specific medical advice for treatment appropriate to you. This information is not intended to relate specifically to insurance or healthcare services provided by Southern Cross. For more articles go to the Medical Library index page.

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Best Medications For Gerd In 2020

This Article is Written and/or Reviewed by RefluxMD Medical Authors Team and Reviewers

Gastroesophageal reflux disease, better known by its acronym, GERD, is a digestive issue that occurs when stomach acid frequently flows back into the esophagus, the tube connecting your mouth to your stomach. When the lower esophageal sphincter , a valve between the stomach and esophagus, is unable to close properly, stomach fluids can reach the esophagus and create significant pain. More importantly, acid reflux can begin to change the cellular structure of the membrane on the esophagus and result in several serious conditions, including esophageal cancer, or adenocarcinoma.

Due to the different varieties of seriousness with this issue, there are many ways to treat and manage the disease, with solutions ranging from over-the-counter pharmaceutical products to others that are prescription based. Here well outline the different levels of GERD and which medication suits that specific intensity.

Best Medications For Heartburn

The Best Heartburn Medicine for 2018

Heartburn is a condition that 60 million Americans experience at least once per month. The main causes of heartburn include acid reflux and gastroesophageal reflux disease , a chronic form of acid reflux. The best medication for heartburn includes classes of heartburn medications: antacids, histamine-2 blockers, and proton pump inhibitors .

To avoid these symptoms, you can take various kinds of medicationsâ from over-the-counter to prescription. To obtain access to some of these prescription forms of heartburn medication, consider signing up for Mira, an affordable alternative to health insurance that allows you to get up to 80% off on prescriptions.

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Is It Heartburn Or Something More

Almost everyone will experience heartburn symptoms at some point or another, especially after eating a large meal, with symptoms sometimes lasting a few hours. However, some people experience chronic heartburn, with symptoms happening more than two times a week. In this case, you may have a more severe medical condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD.

GERD occurs in people with a weak muscular valve called the lower esophageal sphincter . It relaxes too often and lets stomach acid move up the esophagus.

Its estimated that 20% of the American population has GERD, which is why awareness initiatives such as the GERD Awareness Week are so important. The 2019 GERD Awareness Week ran from Nov. 17-24, so add next years to your calendar to stay updated.

Ways To Relieve Acid Reflux Without Medication

Image: Bigstock

A few lifestyle changes are worth trying before resorting to drugs for controlling gastroesophageal reflux.

If you are sounding a little hoarse and have a sore throat, you may be bracing for a cold or a bout of the flu. But if you’ve had these symptoms for a while, they might be caused not by a virus but by a valveyour lower esophageal sphincter. That’s the muscle that controls the passage between the esophagus and stomach, and when it doesn’t close completely, stomach acid and food flow back into the esophagus. The medical term for this process is gastroesophageal reflux the backward flow of acid is called acid reflux.

Acid reflux can cause sore throats and hoarseness and may literally leave a bad taste in your mouth. When acid reflux produces chronic symptoms, it is known as gastroesophageal reflux disorder, or GERD. The most common symptom of GERD is heartburnpain in the upper abdomen and chest that sometimes feel like youre having a heart attack.

Three conditionspoor clearance of food or acid from the esophagus, too much acid in the stomach, and delayed stomach emptyingcontribute to acid reflux, says Dr. Jacqueline Wolf, a gastroenterologist and associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and author of A Woman’s Guide to a Healthy Stomach: Taking Control of Your Digestive Health.

If you’ve been having repeated episodes of heartburnor any other symptoms of acid refluxyou might try the following:

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Do You Need A Medicine

Acid reflux also described as heartburn is a condition where acid from the stomach moves up into your oesophagus . Acid reflux is very common. Many people can control their symptoms by making lifestyle changes or by taking over-the-counter medicines as needed. Some people with more regular or severe symptoms people with gastro-oesophageal reflux disease may need a prescription medicine known as a proton pump inhibitor .

PPI medicines work by reducing the amount of acid made by the stomach and are very effective at controlling symptoms of reflux and heartburn. However, PPIs should not be taken long term when not needed, because of the cost and possible side effects.

If youve been taking a PPI for more than 48 weeks, and your symptoms seem to be well managed, talk to your doctor about reviewing your medicine.

Your doctor may recommend stepping down your treatment, which can include any of the following:

  • reduce your daily dose of medicine
  • limit your treatment so that you take medicine only when you experience the symptoms of heartburn and reflux
  • stop treatment completely as your symptoms may not return.

Talk With Your Doctor

What’s the Best Medicine for Acid Reflux?

If you have GERD symptoms and arent sure what kind of medication to take, talk with your doctor. They can confirm whether you have GERD and develop a treatment plan that will work for you.

Frequent, severe symptoms may be a sign of a more serious problem. And they could get worse over time if left untreated.

Be sure to ask your doctor any questions you may have. These might include:

  • What lifestyle changes could reduce my symptoms?
  • Which kind of OTC medication would be best for me?
  • Would a prescription GERD medication work better for me?
  • Am I taking any medications that might interact with an OTC medication?
  • How and when should I take my GERD medication?

Changes in your daily habits may help reduce GERD symptoms. Your doctor can suggest changes that might work for you, such as:

  • losing weight

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Types Of Prescription Drugs Used For Heartburn Treatment

There are a number of drugs prescribed by the doctors to treat heartburn. The chemical composition for them is generally common in most of them, what differs is their label which is different according to the brand.

Most common prescription drugs fall into two types namely histamine type 2 receptor blockers/antagonists, proton pump inhibitors and pro-motility agents.

What Lifestyle Changes Help Heartburn

The best way to avoid heartburn discomfort is to prevent it. These lifestyle changes can make a big difference:

  • Avoid trigger foods: Foods that promote heartburn include fried and fatty foods, caffeine, chocolate, spicy foods and carbonated beverages.
  • Lose weight: Being overweight increases the likelihood that you’ll experience heartburn.
  • Avoid eating late at night: Try to eat three hours before going to bed. At a minimum, you should wait at least one hour after eating.
  • Elevate the bed: Physically lift the head of your bed about six to eight inches so you’re sleeping on an incline. If that’s not possible, use a wedge pillow for lift.
  • Avoid alcohol and tobacco: These substances increase the chances of heartburn attacks.
  • Wear looser clothing: Tight clothing can put pressure on your digestive system.

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How To Cure Gerd Permanently:

There are plenty of ways to cure GERD permanently. Along with diet and lifestyles, you may take a proton pump inhibitor such as omeprazole to get rid of it. Following are the tips that will help you get rid of GERD,

· Eat slowly: avoid taking large meals or overeating. All this leads to acid reflux in the esophagus, causing acidity.

· Eat selective food: sometimes, your food selection is the cause of your ailment. Choose a healthy diet with lots of water intake. Avoid spicy and fatty food.

· Say no to fizzy drinks: carbonated drinks are unhealthy in many ways. One of them is the burp they cause, which brings stomach acid to the esophagus.

· Dont sleep after a meal: gravity keeps acid in the stomach if you lay down, then it will enter regurgitate, causing acidity.

. Slow movements are appreciative: after a meal, change can cause sluggish digestion. And this can affect overall stomach condition.

· Incline sleeping position: if you have to sleep at any cost after a meal, prefer inclined posture. It will keep acid in the stomach and will maintain good stomach health overall.

· Weight loss: it is one of the most critical factors. Increased weight makes stomach sphincters lose due to which acid regurgitate to the food pipe.

· Quit smoking: because smokers often suffer from acid reflux. The reason is weak esophageal sphincters. Nicotine relaxes the sphincters.

Administer A Gingerroot Tea

Top 5 Best Heartburn Medicine Reviews 2016 Where to Buy ...

Ginger is a well-known home remedy for several stomach issues and ailments, ranging from nausea and including heartburn and indigestion. Fresh ginger root works best, but dried or powdered ginger root can help just as well.

Required Ingredients:

  • 3 quarter slices of fresh ginger root
  • 2 cups of hot water

Process:

  • Add the ginger root to the hot water and allow to simmer, covered, for at least 30 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  • Either remove or keep the ginger slices in the water and pour a cup of the tea.
  • Drink at least 20 minutes before your meal.
  • Repeat when necessary.

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When To Take Gaviscon

If you get occasional mild heartburn or indigestion, only take Gaviscon when you need it.

If you often have heartburn or indigestion, take Gaviscon regularly after meals and at bedtime, up to 4 times a day, whether or not you have symptoms.

If you’ve been taking Gaviscon for more than 7 days and you’re still feeling uncomfortable or in pain, talk to your doctor.

What Are The Long

Long-term acid reflux may lead to GERD, which is a more chronic form of acid reflux. Over time, this can damage the esophagus, leading to a condition known as Barrettâs esophagus, which is typically a precursor to esophageal cancer. On average, less than 10% of GERD patients have some form of esophageal cancer.

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Heartburn And Gerd: How To Treat Nausea And Stomachaches

If you ever feel a burning sensation rise from your stomach into your chest and throat after a meal, youre far from alone. More than 60 million Americans experience the discomfort of heartburn at least once a month, according to the American College of Gastroenterology.

We created this guide to better help you understand what heartburn is, and most importantly, how you can fix it. The good news is, there are plenty of effective treatment options available to help ease and prevent the burn and discomfort. Be it using over-the-counter or prescription medications, or making a few lifestyle changes, weve got you covered.

Dont Sleep On Your Right Side

Herbal Medicine For Heartburn, Reflux and GERD

Several studies show that sleeping on your right side may worsen reflux symptoms at night .

The reason is not entirely clear, but is possibly explained by anatomy.

The esophagus enters the right side of the stomach. As a result, the lower esophageal sphincter sits above the level of stomach acid when you sleep on your left side .

When you lay on your right side, stomach acid covers the lower esophageal sphincter. This increases the risk of acid leaking through it and causing reflux.

Obviously, this recommendation may not be practical, since most people change their position while they sleep.

Yet resting on your left side might make you more comfortable as you fall asleep.

Summary:

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Heartburn Medicine Factors To Consider

When shopping for a new heartburn medicine, there are a number of important factors to consider. Some consumers might only need short-term relief from occasionally eating trigger foods. Others might need a longer-term treatment for chronic acid reflux, GERD, or a sensitive stomach. It isnt unusual to experiment with different types of heartburn medicines in order to find the one that brings the most reliable relief. Here are some important factors to consider while looking:

Relief onset time: While traditional antacid brands offer relief in seconds or minutes, H2RAs and PPIs generally take hours or even days. This delay isnt necessarily a bad thing since these medicines provide longer-term relief. When comparing H2RAs and PPIs, keep in mind that H2RAs usually have a faster onset time, but the effects of PPIs last longer. If faster relief of an occasional bout of heartburn is the goal, try an H2RA first. For more frequent acid reflux, a PPI might be more appropriate.

Mechanism: Different types of heartburn medicine use different mechanisms to address the same basic problem. Antacids chemically neutralize stomach acids but dont affect acid production. H2RAs enter the bloodstream and block acid production. PPIs actually shut down acid production. Consumers should consider the severity and frequency of their heartburn symptoms and shop accordingly.

When To See The Doctor

Let your doctor know how the OTC medicines work for you. If your symptoms do not improve or get worse, the doctor may suggest a prescription medicine. If possible, try not to take PPIs long-term. These can increase your risk of certain health conditions, such as osteoporosis, kidney disease, and dementia.

Tell your doctor if you have any of the following symptoms. They may be signs of a more serious problem.

  • Bloody or black stools.
  • Heartburn that has not improved after 2 weeks of treatment with OTC medicines.
  • Trouble swallowing or pain when you swallow.
  • Unplanned weight loss.

If you have chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, and pain in your arms, you may be having a heart attack. Call 911 or go to the emergency room right away.

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For When H2 Blockers Dont Help Proton Pump Inhibitors

If youve been taking H2 blockers for a few weeks and your acid reflux symptoms arent letting up or havent lessened, then you might need a proton pump inhibitor . PPIs are the most powerful drug for reducing acid production and typically the most effective treatment for GERD. PPIs work by blocking an enzyme that produces stomach acid, causing them to make less acid and soothe heartburn symptoms.

PPIs come in pill form, and while many are available by prescription only, some are available over-the-counter. Unless otherwise prescribed by a doctor, PPIs should be taken on an empty stomach 30 to 60 minutes before eating breakfast, once daily for 14 days. While it may take between 1 to 4 days for the full effects to kick in, people may experience complete relief from their symptoms within 24 hours.

Common Proton Pump Inhibitors

  • Lansoprazole
  • Omeprazole
  • Omeprazole with sodium bicarbonate
  • Esomeprazole

A meta-analysis of 41 studies comparing PPIs found no differences among the various kinds of PPIs in treating GERD.

Proton Pump Inhibitors Side Effects

Mild symptoms include:

However, long term use of PPIs has raised concerns with potential associated side effects, including:

  • Vitamin B12 deficiency
  • Increased risk of fractures
  • Increased risk of pneumonia and dementia
  • Hypomagnesemia low level of magnesium in the blood that can lead to convulsions, fatigue, and muscle weakness
  • Increased risk of Clostridium difficile bacteria infections

Who Can And Cannot Take Gaviscon

Home Remedies for Heartburn

Gaviscon can be taken by most adults and children aged 12 and over.

If your baby or child has problems with reflux or indigestion, talk to your doctor as soon as you can. Only treat them with Gaviscon if their doctor prescribes it.

To make sure this medicine is safe for you, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have:

  • ever had an allergic reaction to Gaviscon or any other medicines
  • been advised to eat a low calcium or low salt diet
  • kidney or heart disease

Never give Gaviscon to children under 12, unless their doctor prescribes it.

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