Anyone out there have acid reflux? I am beginning a six-week therapy with Prilosec and hoping for relief. I've had acid issues on and on off for years. No idea what makes it flare up, but it's damn annoying. Any recommendations/tips?
I had it for several years, OP.
Prilosec will seem like a godsend. At first. My doctor had me on it for two years before I noticed that it is only meant to be used 14 days at a time.
It has the potential to fuck up your digestion permanently, in which case you will be stuck taking it for life.
Examine what you are eating first. For me, quitting smoking, giving up most caffeine, and cuttng out dairy were the steps I needed to take. Then I was able to ween of Prilosec.
It is likely something in your diet (or drinking/smoking) that could be causing it. Try that before letting your doctor get you hooked on a drug.
Hope that helps!
Mine is laryngo-pharyngo reflux. In this case the reflux goes up and into the throat and voice box. I do not get heartburn, rather I feel lumps in my throat that do not swallow away, sometimes tightness in the throat, sometime mild burning. Worst is that I lose my voice and from time to time feel a brief grinding sensation in my voice box when I lose it. And often hoarseness which does not go away. Heartburn happens when you pool acid reflux from the stomach at the bottom of your esophagus. My reflux was diagnoses by an ENT doc (he looked at my my throat and vocal chords with a fiberoptic camera inserted through my nose- was not at all uncomfortable.) Very weird stuff. Scared the shit out of me and in retrospect, increase my stress and anxiety which makes it all worse. When it did not go away with a low acid diet and PPIs within 6 months (kind of came and went) I had endoscopy which confirmed mild gastritis and esophagitis (which I do not feel.) I was relieved at the time because I thought something more serious might be wrong.
I related it to stress. I have had a hard year. And it is now getting better although it comes and goes. And my particular symptoms do not appear related to night or day, in fact are worse during the day and as the day progresses.
I do everything nevertheless: diet, PPI (high dose Nexium), stop eating 3 hours before bed, and trying to work out my anxiety. I will keep vigil until well after the symptoms are gone. Stress seems to be the trigger.
Good luck OP. The PPIs work better with simple heart burn than with reflux up into the voice box such as I have. Lots of good stuff on line. Gastroenterologists are good on heartburn (GERD) but not so on laryngo-pharyngo reflux.
I used to get it when under stress. Citrus and tomatoes made it worse. Switch to weak mint tea with honey, and very small, frequent meals.
Off the list for me: alcohol, tobacco, coffee, tea, soda, dairy, citrus, tomatoes and garlic. I took Nexium until my insurance stopped paying for it. Now I just avoid those things and it's manageable. I do miss them though. I would about kill for a full-bodied red wine and penne vodka, followed by a cappuccino, but it would kill me.
I hear you, R4. I don't miss smoking at all (gross), prefer green tea to coffee anyway, and gave up dairy relatively easily.
But I do miss the red wine. I will have a glass now and then with dinner, but still pay for it afterwards.
Feh. Just take the pills. Then you can eat and drink whatever you want, whenever you want.
I have it from time to time, not very often but when it flares up its awful. I found that certain foods caused it, especially spicy food, too much chocolate, late night eating etc. When I have it - mercifully infrequently - it wakes me up and I spend the next half hour clearing my throat.
I also took meds for this for about a year. I then tapered off. Now take meds only when needed. I avoid orange juice, cooked tomatoes, coffee, alcohol. The one thing that is sure to cause problems is carbonated beverages. An occasional soda is tolerable, but a few days in a row and I really feel it.
Get Protonix/ Pantoprazole. I'm not sure of the spelling & too lazy to go get the bottle. It's been a godsend. I could drink hydrochloridic acid if I wanted to now.
With any proton pump inhibitor, take a calcium supplement. PPIs leach calcium from your bones.
I take the WalGreens "generic" version of Prilosec every day (under a doctor's orders). It's saved my life.
The PPIs are great, but be sure to take time off very regularly so you don't become permanently dependent on them. Take the pill 30 minutes before a meal, and keep track of which foods are bothering you. It may not be things you'd expect.
Someone on Twitter gave me this solution. I have had acid reflux as long as I can remember, so bad the acid would "backwash" at night; scorch my throat, wake me up-sometimes even come up through my nose.
The miracle cure she told me about: Chia seeds. The same thing used for Chia pets, but at a vitamin/health food store you can buy them by the bag. They're a little scarce now because word is spreading. But, the supply will soon keep with the demand, I'm sure.
At the first sign of heartburn, swallow a tablespoon or two of the dry seeds with as much water as you can. The acid will be absorbed in seconds. It's like pouring water on a fire.
Plus they are a "superfood"; higher than salmon in Omega 3 fatty acids, a protein and fiber source and they make you feel full because of how they expand. This is the first month I didn't bother to refill my prescription for Omeprezole. They're that good & healthy.
My problem is a sliding hiatal (sp?) hernia. Prevents the top stomach sphincter from closing all the way. It results not only in heart-burn, but really bad reflux at night when lying down (fills my mouth and sinuses with the most horrible taste/smell ever experienced, makes me wake up choking and gagging, with my vocal cords burning)
Prilosec not only saved my life, but the addition of an adjustable bed so I can sleep at an angle helped a lot too.
I've been taking it every single day for years now.
Can't you just get ranitidine /zantac or another generic over the counter?
Professional singers with acid reflux pop them regularly.
i take prilosec OTC. These pills are bad?
R15, you can save a lot of money by buying the WalGreens brand equivalent. It's the same stuff, works just as well, and you can save a LOT.
Try to find the Acid Reflux for Dummies book in the library, it has a kind of insulting title but it really is a helpful book.
Food combination diet eliminates it.
Stop eating wheat. My mother had the worst acid reflux on a daily basis, and she cut wheat products out of her diet. She never has it now - and I mean never - unless she slips and eats bread or another wheat products. She's also had the added benefit of losing 10 lbs and, so she says, feeling better than she has in years.
If you can't make that kind of diet change, then, yeah, go with the drugs.
I'm going to try Chia seeds--though it sounds a bit simplistic but what the hell, I've been dealing with reflux for 7 years now and it's getting worse every year.
Taking the pills gives me side effects and I then have to take a very expensive medicine that I can only get at a compound pharmacy because the drug has been banned for normal distribution in the US. I gave up on pills about 3 years ago.
And I always read a lot about diet eliminating reflux--I think a diet helps but I now believe if your esophageal muscle is fucked, then you're going to reflux. The pills reduce acid but they do nothing about the esophageal muscle not functioning properly.
As soon as I'm back on a good health plan, I'm going to a GI doctor and pushing for surgery. My last GI doc wouldn't even talk to me about the surgery option because he thought I was too young to have my esophagus altered. What stupid rationality, I suppose it's better I get cancer instead?
We've had the wheat loon show up along with the fun addition of the chia seed fanatic. Now we can just wait for the "drink apple vinegar" idiot, and we'll be good to go.
Thank you all for your unsubstantiated food theories. It wouldn't be a digestion thread without you.
Zegerid has saved my life.
Prevacid works for me; omeprazole never did.
I used to have severe acid reflux almost every night. When I started eating properly, it went away. I still eat what I want, but in moderation. I also try not to eat within a few hours of bed time. Now, the only time I get it is when I drink too much coffee, and that is controlled with one or two Tums.
I would never take anything that changes how my body functions unless other, less severe, courses of action were not effective. Doctors are too quick to prescribe drugs for problems that can be fixed through diet and exercise.
I've had it for 8 years and try not to take the PPI's long term because of all the long term side effects. I find that in addition to watching what I eat sleeping in an adjustable bed with the head raised helps relieve my symptoms. I did some research and eventually bought one from Easy Rest Adjustable Beds. (www.easyrest.com if you are interested.) Good luck!
Get a prescription for Ranitidine.
Ranitidine costs only $4 per month or $10 for three-month supply - and you do NOT need insurance - at Walmart.
And they deliver using U.S. mail for free.
Go to Walmart.com and click on Pharmacy. You mail your prescription in and then start receiving free home delivery thru Walmart Home Delivery.
Ranitidine really works.