33% of Americans have acid reflux at least once a week. If you’re among them, you don’t have to keep living with a sore throat and other acid reflux symptoms. At Lake Grove ENT in Lake Oswego, Oregon, a team of ear, nose, and throat specialists expertly treats chronic acid reflux complications such as sinus infections, ear infections, and Barrett’s esophagus. Book your appointment online or call the office for help now.
Acid reflux, or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), means your stomach acid sometimes flows backward. That happens because your lower esophageal sphincter, the muscle that normally squeezes shut to prevent reflux, doesn't close correctly.
Your stomach acid moves through this opening, up your esophagus (the tube between your throat and stomach), and sometimes into your throat as well. Many people of all ages have acid reflux occasionally, but it can become chronic. People with GERD typically have bouts of acid reflux two to three times a week.
When stomach acid irritates the delicate tissue inside your esophagus, it can cause burning sensations known as heartburn. Sometimes the burning sensation moves upwards from the stomach to encompass your chest. You may also have symptoms including:
Your symptoms may start shortly after eating, and they often intensify if you lay down after eating.
Some mild cases of occasional acid reflux may respond to over-the-counter medications, but if you're dealing with chronic symptoms, you need treatment from the professionals at Lake Grove ENT.
Chronic acid reflux can lead to serious conditions like Barrett's esophagus (precancerous cells in the esophagus), severe sinusitis, ear infections, esophageal strictures (narrowing), and esophageal ulcers if ignored.
Lake Grove ENT diagnoses the root cause of your acid reflux before starting treatment, as this can guide your care plan. The most common cause of GERD is hiatal hernia, but certain risk factors, including obesity, smoking, and pregnancy, can contribute.
Dietary factors may also contribute to or intensity acid reflux. Spicy, fatty, and fried foods are all common GERD triggers. Garlic, chocolate, onions, citrus fruits, and tomato are other common culprits.
Treatment depends on the severity of your acid reflux and the complications it causes. If you have conditions like ear infections, sinusitis, or Barrett's esophagus, you'll typically need dedicated treatments for those conditions along with targeted interventions for your acid reflux.
Your Lake Grove ENT provider may prescribe antacids to neutralize your stomach acid, medication to reduce or block acid production, or both. Lifestyle and diet changes are important in managing acid reflux. Your doctor may recommend reducing or eliminating trigger foods, eating smaller meals, not eating before bed, quitting smoking, and other healthy changes.
Get help for acid reflux by calling Lake Grove ENT or clicking the online scheduler now.