Acid reflux, commonly experienced as ‘heartburn’ amongst its patients shows up mostly as one of the following detectable medical conditions or indicators:
• Food getting back into the mouth up from the stomach – also known as regurgitation
• Huskiness of the throat
• A burning sensation up from upper abdominal portion into the neck – usually called as heartburn
• Food swallowing issues termed medically as Dysphagia
• Eroding of the Dental structures – gums and teeth
• A hurting chest – similar feeling as that of heartburn
• Movement of gastric juices from stomach into the mouth through the throat and also into the lungs’ airways – which occurs as an Asthmatic complication like Wheezing etc.
Let’s get down to some more brief for a couple of the conditions mentioned above.
• Heartburn – That ‘chest-on-flames’ sensation that you experience, having had a sumptuous and filling meal when you try to lie down lazily or even otherwise, is what heartburn is all about. Acid from the stomach filling up the esophagus is what generally the underlying cause of this sensation is. Ulcers, scar tissue, sustained coughing and cells of the esophagus getting distorted, are some of the complications that this particular symptom can lead to more often than not. Cancer of the esophagus may also result, though it’s a rarity per se. In the male gender, the heartburn actually varies in intensity greatly from being a mild to a severe heartburn. While in the females, the pregnancy period is one that is more prone to showing acid reflux symptoms, especially the last trimester with this period accounting for almost 60% to 80% of the cases.
• Regurgitation – When the acid in your stomach reaches your mouth via your throat, it not only leads to a revulsion type of feeling for you, but the acid can have far damaging consequences by irritating and destroying totally or partially the tissues in the areas of your throat and mouth and also destroying teeth enamel! In males, this generally shows up as burps which are not dry, as the acid gushes up the esophagus. This is usually not taken very seriously by men, but if left unattended for long duration, can lead to other complications like chronic coughing and destroyed teeth enamel etc. In women, though they don’t find it pleasant to discuss about it since it looks a lot like they are throwing up – it still needs to be investigated since it can create complications during pregnancy periods and also otherwise by destroying tooth enamel and tissues lining up the esophagus.
• Huskiness of the throat – Since it is the throat which becomes the medium of all that acid from your stomach reaching your mouth, if you are suffering from acid reflux disease, the throat has to bear all the brunt and huskiness or harshness of the throat results naturally. Laryngitis, which is nothing but irritation of the larynx due to acid reflux – is another symptom which presents itself next thus leading to a cough which dries up and creates even more rashness in the throat apart from a scary hoarse voice leading to a difficulty in speech.
• Wheezing – this acid reflux symptom leads to puffing and panting and an anxiety-filled feeling of being out of breath and is usually seen in people suffering from an asthmatic condition.
Most of the symptoms like heartburn, regurgitation and coughing are anyways bothersome throughout the day, but at night, when you are lying down, the gravity plays an even more spoilsport role by facilitating easy movement of the acid from stomach to the mouth.
Any or all of these symptoms may cause a patient of acid reflux or GERD – that is – gastroesophageal reflux disease – to suffer to quite an extent both mentally and physically.