Whenever we eat, chew and swallow the food, it passes from our throat to the stomach through the esophagus, which is hollow muscular tube whose purpose is to transport the food from throat to the stomach. At the end of the esophagus and the entrance of stomach, there is a valve which is actually a ring of muscle fibers called as Lower Esophageal Sphincter (LES). The function of LES is to close soon after the food has entered into the stomach and prevents the stomach acids – which are necessary for food digestion – going back to the esophagus because they can cause serious damage to the lining of esophagus. Sometimes LES doesn’t close too tightly as it should be or remains open which results in the leakage of stomach acidic contents back into the esophagus and this backward action of stomach acids is called as Acid Reflux. If this condition continues for more than two weeks then it becomes chronic and this severe form of Acid Reflux is called Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD).
What are the 6 silent signs of Acid Reflux that you should know?
The most common sign and symptom of Acid Reflux is heartburn which is a burning pain that moves from your stomach to the chest or abdomen or even towards your mouth. But there are some other signs of Acid Reflux that we normally ignore in our everyday life and didn’t take them seriously which results in worsening the condition. Let’s see the 6 silent signs of the condition:
Sore throat or hoarseness:
If you have sore throat that isn’t going away and that isn’t accompanied by commonly cold symptoms such as flu then it may be caused by Acid Reflux. According to Gina Sam, MD, MPH, director of the Mount Sinai Gastrointestinal Motility Center in NYC, the throat feels sore because a little amount of stomach acid come up in your throat from esophagus. The unexplained hoarseness in the throat may also be caused by acid that moves up to your larynx or voice box and it is more visible when you wake up in morning because it takes all night to travel when you were lying down.
Trouble during swallowing the food:
Dr. Sam says that if your food is getting stuck when you swallow it or if you feel that the liquid isn’t go down completely or has a sensation that something is still stuck in your throat then these all might be the signs of Acid Reflux.
If you dedicatedly brush and floss your teeth but still experiencing various dental problems such as cavities, enamel eroding, discoloration then Acid Reflux may be the possible cause. It is so because even a small amount of acid moving up in your throat or mouth while lying down can adversely affect the tooth enamel.
Evan Dellon, MD, MPH, at UNC School of Medicine in North Carolina said that constant cough or wheezing that mimics the condition of asthma or bronchitis can also be caused by stomach acid moving into your lungs. Most of the time, the action of coughing or wheezing puts pressure on your belly which pushes stomach acids upwards.
If the nasal congestion comes and goes away and then again comes at any time then it may be caused by Acid Reflux.
If you feel like your ears ringing especially after a meal then it may be happen due to acid that goes into the sinuses and interior of the ear.
A lot of patients experiencing nasal congestion, ringing ears, cough or wheezing and sinus pain think that these are the signs of any problem related to cold and consult ENT specialist but if these conditions persist continuously then the cause will be Acid Reflux.
So, if you’re experiencing these signs then consult board certified GI Endoscopy Practice gastroenterologists in NJ who can better suggest you whether these are the signs of Acid Reflux and if diagnosed then you can be given best treatment tailored according to the condition at the right time.