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Is GERD the Word for Your Heartburn? Symptoms of Acid Reflux Can Be Warning Sign

man with his hand on his chest

Acid reflux, or gastroesophageal reflux, is actually a normal process that can occur several times a day without causing any noticeable health issues. And, if you do need some relief from heartburn, sometimes grabbing an antacid is all it takes.
But when that acid reflux gets more frequent or severe, or starts causing damage to the esophagus, throat or respiratory tract, it might be Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, or GERD.

Symptoms that heartburn may have turned to GERD:

  • A burning or discomfort that moves from your stomach to your abdomen or chest, or even up into your throat
  • Needing over-the-counter medications for heartburn more than twice a week
  • Difficulty swallowing, or feeling like you have a lump in your throat
  • A regurgitation of a sour or bitter tasting acid in the back of the throat or mouth
  • A chronic cough, disrupted sleep, laryngitis or new or worsening asthma (for those more prone to nighttime acid reflux)

Instead of telling yourself it’s “just heartburn,” talk with your primary care doctor. It’s likely you can manage your symptoms with some lifestyle changes and over-the-counter medications. And, if GERD surgery is ultimately the best option, our expert, compassionate general surgeons can help.

If you think you may have symptoms of GERD, contact Surgical Associates about speaking to one of our physicians at 608-643-2431.