Acid reflux, in most cases, is caused by a confluence of stomach content and stomach acids going in reverse from the stomach into the esophagus and sometimes into the mouth. There is nothing good about this sudden shift to reverse when the contents of your stomach are returning with corrosive stomach acid. While not usually dangerous, it's certainly not a pleasant experience for most.
The cause of Acid reflux can be no more than an upset stomach or a particularly spicy or acidic meal. It can be considerably more severe if a regular occurrence. This seriousness is often rooted in the types of symptoms you're experiencing and more importantly their frequency. Acid reflux affects as many as one in five Americans regularly, but that paints a picture with too small of a brush. If you're taking antacids each day or your reflux is frequently returning, there is a potential for a more serious issue.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) has inherent consequences if untreated and can even be fatal in the evening while you're sleeping by allowing stomach contents and stomach acid to block the esophagus. Heartburn by itself rarely represents something serious. It does, however, range from an annoyance, to downright painful. Dyspepsia is a bit more serious; it's a type of heartburn that can cause you to become panicky and cause considerable pain for many it affects.
Acid reflux is responsible for nearly 60% of emergency room visits when chest pain presents and heart attacks are suspects. Those that experience frequent and persistent heartburn and acid reflux should see a doctor. Those sleeping with acid reflux should make sure they are sleeping on their stomachs.
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