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Understanding Acid Reflux – How is it Different From Heartburn?

Understanding Acid Reflux – How is it Different From Heartburn?

In acid reflux, the acids from the stomach flow back to the esophagus which results to discomforts and pain in the chest which is termed as heartburn.

In anatomy, the esophagus is defined as the tube between the stomach and the pharynx that is located at the back of the throat. In the esophagus is the esophageal sphincter which lies at the junction where the stomach and the esophagus is connected.

The stomach produces gastric juices but the esophagus does not. The inner linings of the stomach contain several protective mechanisms so that it won’t be affected by the effects of the gastric juices. However, since the environment of the esophagus is not normally acidic, it doesn’t have any protective mechanisms. The lower esophageal sphincter controls the backflow of acids from the stomach to the esophagus so that the esophageal lining won’t be harmed.

There are instances wherein the esophageal sphincter becomes weak and the gastric juices seep to the esophagus. Majority of the cases of gastric reflux are harmless although there are some instances wherein the heartburn further develops into a condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD.

When we say reflux, it refers to the action while on the other hand, heartburn refers to the sensation. The pain that one feels is called heartburn while the movement of acid from the stomach to the esophagus is called acid reflux.

Symptoms of acid reflux include chest pain which is considered to be part of the heartburn sensation, hoarseness, regurgitation wherein the food is brought back to the mouth, dysphagia or difficulty in swallowing, and dental erosion.

Generally, acid reflux occur when the lower esophageal sphincter is unable to function properly and gastric juices seeps out from the stomach. Some of the causes for acid reflux include pregnancy, consumption of large meals, asthma, peptic ulcer, hiatal hernia, bending forward, and poor eating habits.

In order to prevent conditions such as acid reflux, it is important to have good eating habits and maintain a healthy body through proper exercise. You can contact personal trainer Sydney to get more information about trainings and workouts that are suitable for you.