Unusual Symptoms and GERD
Medications and specialist treatment
Successful treatment depends on identifying the precise offending allergens so they can be avoided and, when necessary, medical treatment such as antihistamines, nasal sprays, and desensitizing allergy shots. Cigarette smoke is a toxic substance that increases the production of stomach acid, possibly resulting in acid reflux.
The most common silent reflux symptoms are hoarseness, chronic cough, throat-clearing, post-nasal drip, sinusitis, sore or burning throat, difficulty swallowing, shortness of breath, snoring, sleep apnea, bad breath, tooth decay, asthma, and COPD. Unfortunately, your doctor is probably unaware that these symptoms may be caused by silent reflux and that it could be controlled with the proper diagnosis and treatment. But these also can be symptoms of other problems, such as chronic acid reflux. Acid reflux occurs when stomach acid backs up, or refluxes, out of the stomach and into the esophagus. The chronic type of acid reflux is called gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD.
And the throat and voice box are far more sensitive to irritation. Mucus develops and creates cold-like symptoms, such as chronic coughing, post-nasal drip, sinus problems and a sore throat. Acid reflux occurs when your weakened lower esophageal sphincter (LES) allows stomach acid to move backwards from the stomach into the esophagus. Whether or not your acid reflux produces heartburn or common cold symptoms depends on the type of acid reflux you have. GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) is the type of acid reflux that produces heartburn.
Acid reflux frequently leads to chronic sinusitis. Many people who experience acid reflux also suffer from significant post-nasal drip, along with a choking sensation. When this acid reflux occurs without the symptoms of heartburn and indigestion, sufferers are not otherwise alerted to their condition. Food getting stuck when you swallow, liquid that just wonâ€™t go down, or the sensation that something is stuck in your throat could all be acid reflux symptoms, says Dr. Sam. Chronic reflux can irritate the throat, and scar tissue can develop in the esophagus and narrow it.
Acute or chronic sinusitis
But the anatomy of the nose, or the way the nose is shaped, can have a major effect on a personâ€™s ability to breathe easily. Good treatment sometimes requires that we determine exactly whatâ€™s causing a personâ€™s symptoms. That way, we can prescribe the right treatment for the right problem. Letâ€™s examine the top three problems patients commonly mistake for allergy symptoms or sinus infections and see the impacts they can have on sufferers. Disorders that affect our ability to speak and swallow properly can have a tremendous impact on our lives and livelihoods.
Healthy eating. Whatâ€™s that when it comes to reflux? First, no late-night eating. If you go to bed with a full stomach, you are likely to reflux all night. Besides, reflux is the most common cause of disturbed sleep and it is even associated with snoring and sleep apnea.
The train started back in the early ’90s in Winston-Salem when Don Castell and Joe Richter were working with James Koufman, and they put together some very interesting work on the relationship between gastroesophageal reflux and extraesophageal disease. Lo and behold, the larynx was part of this focus, and Dr. Koufman really took off on this and started to educate laryngologists that this can occur. At The Becker ENT Center, physicians can do a fiberoptic evaluation of your nose and sinuses to pinpoint the problem, and can show you the specific problem on a video screen.
This interferes with a patientâ€™s ability to breathe and perceive smell and even taste. Although itâ€™s difficult to explain how GERD mechanisms affect the ear and sinus, doctors suggest that damages caused by GERD can change how the ear and nose behave. Finally, if you are going to be on a low-acid diet, you must know if there is acid added to something. You have to read the ingredients on labels. What should you look for?
However, others need more aggressive and lengthy treatment. If this is not effective or if symptoms recur, your doctor may suggest surgery.