Acid reflux is a digestive disorder characterized by acidic stomach juices traveling upward from the stomach into the esophagus. It may cause an acidic taste when you burp after a meal. It can also cause a burning sensation that worsens when you lie down.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a disorder that involves a part of the esophagus called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). The LES is the ring of muscle that separates the stomach and the esophagus. During digestion, the LES opens to let food pass into the stomach then closes to prevent food and stomach juices from flowing back up. One of the primary causes of GERD is a weakened LES.
Causes and Risk Factors
Your lifestyle and diet may contribute to your GERD symptoms. Fried food, fatty food, coffee, chocolate, and alcoholic beverages can all trigger reflux and heartburn.
Several conditions can increase your risk of developing GERD, including:
A hiatal hernia or a bulging of the upper stomach through the diaphragm opening
Connective tissue disorders
Drinking and smoking
Approaches to Acid Reflux (G.E.R.D)
Traditional Medical Approach: Prescription medications like Prilosec, Nexium, and Prevacid. Antacid over-the-counter medications such as Pepcid and Tums are commonly used for heartburn.
Prescription Drug SIde Effects: Long-term use of Prilosec, Nexium, and Prevacid may lead to poor digestion, vit B12 deficiency, gut infections, kidney damage, and even bone fractures. Continued use of Pepcid may lead to muscle weakness, liver problems, and decreased sex drive.
Chiropractic Approach: Check for subluxations at T4, T5, or T6 that may cause spasmodic movement of the stomach valve that is designed to keep acid in the stomach and not in the esophagus. Specifically, adjust the subluxated segment.
Benefits of Chiropractic Care for Acid Reflux
Chiropractic care can significantly improve a patient’s quality of life and overall health and wellness. Chiropractors treat GERD by helping you manage a healthy weight. They can also help take stress off your spine and joints as well as take pressure off the nerves, which can contribute to acid reflux.
Additionally, chiropractors can help you strengthen the muscles of your back, through spinal manipulation, which can relieve pressure on your stomach. These chiropractic treatment methods can correct dysfunctions and help your body heal.
Live Your Most Jubilant Life!