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At the top of your stomach where the esophagus ends is a valve called the lower esophageal sphincter. Normally, it closes as soon as food passes through it. If it doesn’t close all the way or if it opens too often, acid produced by your stomach can move up into your esophagus. It has been found that the reason for non closure or improper closure is because of the nerves coming from the spine that control this muscle at the sphincter is compromised by a flat back usually from T1-4 which Chiropractic can adjust. This can cause symptoms such as a burning pain in the chest area often called heartburn.  If the acid reflux symptoms happen more than once a week, your medical physician may give you the diagnosis known as acid reflux disease, or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

Another reason for the acid reflux can be from a stomach abnormality known as a hiatal hernia. This happens when the upper part of the stomach is trapped above the diaphragm. The diaphragm separates the your guts from your chest organs. The diaphragm helps keep acid in your stomach. It may be the reason that you experience hiccups that just don’t let up.  If you think you might have this condition, you can drink a large quantity of water and jump off the second to bottom of a step causing, by the weight of the water caught in the upper trapped part, the stomach to drop through the diaphragm entrapment and back to its proper position.

Here are some things that create and aggravate acid reflux disorders. If you are eating large meals and or lying down right after a meal, you are inviting acid to rise up into the esophagus.  Being overweight doesn’t help and bending over that belly, even a pregnant belly, at the waist invites the acid to back up into the esophagus region. Of course, snacking just before bedtime is not a good idea.  IF you already have the acid burns in your esophagus, then eating certain foods, such as citrus, tomato, chocolate, mint, garlic, onions, or spicy or fatty foods will aggravate your condition.  But strangely enough, taking a tablespoon of lemon juice concentrate just before and when you experience the acid reflux pain seems to settle the stomach and stop it from spitting the acid up into the esophagus area.  For those who are already suffering from the condition have probably figured out that drinking certain beverages, such as alcohol, carbonated drinks, coffee, or tea or smoking accelerates the frequency of heartburn.  Some of the risk factors for acquiring this condition can come from taking aspirin, ibuprofen, certain muscle relaxers, or blood pressure medications.

So what are you symptoms to know if you have acid reflux or not? Common symptoms of acid reflux are heartburn. Heart burn feels like a burning pain or discomfort that may move from your stomach to your abdomen or chest, or even up into your throat.  You can also regurgitate. It is not fun to have a sour or bitter-tasting acid backing up into your throat or mouth.  Have you often experienced bloating, bloody or black stools or bloody vomiting, and burping?  Consider that it might be part of the problem.

There is another reason for acid reflux which is called dysphagia. That is when there is a narrowing of your esophagus, which creates the sensation of food being stuck in your throat. This is one in which a throat doctor is recommended to determine if that is what is happening to you.

What will the medical doctor do?  Your doctor may order tests to confirm a diagnosis and check for other problems. You may need one or more tests such as these:Barium swallow (esophagram) can check for ulcers or a narrowing of the esophagus. You first swallow a solution to help structures show up on an X-ray. Esophageal manometry can check the function of the esophagus and lower esophageal sphincter. pH monitoring can check for acid in your esophagus. The doctor inserts a device into your esophagus and leaves it in place for 1 to 2 days to measure the amount of acid in your esophagus. Endoscopy can check for problems in your esophagus or stomach. This test involves inserting a long, flexible, lighted tube down your throat. First, the doctor will spray the back of your throat with anesthetic and give you a sedative to make you more comfortable. A biopsy may be taken during endoscopy to check samples of tissue under a microscope for infection or abnormalities.

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