GERD

GERD

Acidity is related to heartburn (also known as 'Reflux' or GERD) and gas formation in the stomach. In acidity, acid reflux or gastro-esophageal reflux disease, or as it is known in Ayurveda urdhvagataamalpitta, there is a movement of gastric juices from the stomach into the lower esophagus. This is a condition which is caused when the highly acidic contents of the stomach (mostly hydrochloric acid) move upward into the esophagus through an improperly closing valve.

In Ayurveda this condition is considered to be caused by the aggravation of pitta dosha which is responsible for the burning sensation felt in the chest region.

Direct causes of the problem may include over-ingestion of high-fat foods, excessive alcohol intake, smoking, keeping the stomach empty for long periods, skipping meals (particularly breakfast), and excessive intake of caffeine. Other possible causes of acidity and reflux may include pregnancy, aging, obesity, and inappropriate or erratic eating habits. There may be a genetic factor as well.

Symptoms found in adults include chest and stomach pain, gas formation in the stomach, spitting up of acidic stomach contents, sour taste in the mouth and burning sensations in the mouth and throat, voice changes and the formation of ulcers in the esophagus (tube connecting mouth and stomach), pain during muscular contractions, difficulty in swallowing and pain in ears. Clients with hiatal hernia, even if asymptomatic (about 60% of the population) are at a higher risk of developing acid reflux or acidity. Symptoms in children might also include respiratory difficulties and coughing, inadequate weight, vomiting, and loss of appetite.