Tell Me About Life Style And Dietary Changes
Dont drink alcohol, and dont smoke. Both nicotine and alcohol irritate the stomach and increase acid production. Also,
- Avoid clothing that is tight around the waist corsets, belts.
- Avoid bending over.
Raise your head when lying down. This is best achieved NOT with pillows, but by raising the head of the bed by 6 to 8 inches. This can be done by sliding blocks under the legs at the head of the bed or a wedge under the head of the mattress.
Acid Reflux And Sinusitis Connection:
Acid reflux laryngopharyngeal reflux and sinusitis, do indeed overlap. Sometimes, the symptoms of GERD can mimic some of the symptoms of sinusitis. The acid reflux causing post nasal drip problems. As a result, sinus infection sticking in the back of the throat. Sinusitis causes all the other symptoms like sinus discharge, headache, congestion, cough, and sore throat!
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Reflux Mucus Is Thick And Associated With Other Reflux Symptoms
Almost 77,000 people responded to a poll we ran asking what reflux symptom people have. Post-nasal drip was the number one symptom and the second most common was chronic throat clearing .
The consistency of reflux-caused mucus is thicker than that of allergy, and for the sufferer, the mucus is sticky and hard to move, especially when it gets on the vocal cords. On examination by a physician, reflux-mucus is thick, white, and widely dispersed in the nose and throat, especially on the back wall of the pharynx .
If you wake up in the morning and the taste is bitter / salty / sour, thats a tell-tale sign you have acid reflux.
Coughing up mucus that is salty is also common with acid reflux, especially if use a lot of salt in your food. Nevertheless, is important to note that real infections, both sinusitis and bronchitis, can sometimes produce salty-tasting mucus.
If your post-nasal drip has been bad enough, you may have been recommended surgery. Unfortunately, its often done unnecessarily. Understand that the nasal sinuses are hollow cavities in the face they have ostia that allow them to breathe and drain into the back of the nose. A lot of sinus and nasal surgery is unnecessary surgery because that drip is a reaction to reflux, not a problem in itself.
Fix the reflux and you fix the post-nasal drip, mucus and sinus problems.
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What Is The The Relationship Between Gerd And Sinusitis
Sometimes, the symptoms of GERD can mimic some of the symptoms of sinusitis. The sensation of post nasal draining and the need to clear your throat constantly may be due to post nasal drip but may also be due to GERD. The sinus specialist may therefore examine you in the office to see if there is physical evidence of GERD. Learn more about our ENT and sinus Specialist here.
When Acid reflux occurs, it can sometimes actually contribute to sinusitis! That is to say, the acid can travel all the way up to your nose and sinuses , and this acid can inflame the nose and irritate the lining. This problem is more common in children but it may also be seen in adults.
I am extremely pleased with the care and treatment I have received from Dr. Becker. He is a kind and caring doctor. I would recommend him to anyone.
Triggers For Acid Reflux
So now you know that the triggers do not include anything going on with the nose, no matter how drippy and voluminous the mucus is.
You may have both GERD and a good case of postnasal drip, independent of each other as far as cause.
Acid reflux, including that which gets as high as the throat or nose, can be brought on by:
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Can Acid Reflux Cause Sinus Pain
Sinus pain isnt the first thing that comes to mind for most people when they think of acid reflux. But in addition to heartburn and other digestive complaints, acid reflux can play a role in a number of respiratory ailments, including asthma, post nasal drip and chronic cough. Whether acid reflux â also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD â can affect the sinuses is a matter of increasing interest to researchers. While a medical consensus hasnt quite been reached, a number of studies make a very plausible connection between GERD and chronic sinusitis.
If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
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Are Heartburn And Acid Reflux Impacting Your Life
The heart has nothing to do with heartburn. Heartburn is mild to severe pain caused by digestive issues. While this issue is quite common and experienced by millions of Americans, that doesnt change how uncomfortable it is. Do you feel a sharp burning sensation behind your breastbone that moves upwards toward your neck and throat after eating? Does bending over or lying down only make you feel worse?
Heartburn is the main symptom of acid reflux and its chronic and more severe counterpart gastroesophageal reflux disease . Finding out what is causing your heartburn could be your first step toward relief. At Houston Sinus & Allergy, you can meet acid reflux and GERD doctors in Houston who can help you find treatment that works.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Acid Reflux And Gerd
Both acid reflux and GERD share many of the same symptoms, including:
- Burning sensation in the chest and throat
- Belching or hiccuping frequently after eating
- Sore throat or throat irritation
- Trouble swallowing
- Foul taste in mouth or back of the throat
If you have gastroesophageal reflux disease, there may be a few additional symptoms, such as:
- Severe chest pain sometimes mistaken for a heart attack
Chronic Sinusitis In Gerd Patients
A group of Taiwanese doctors tried to understand the relationship between GERD and chronic rhinosinusitis. Chronic rhinosinusitis is caused by inflammation in the sinus. This interferes with a patients ability to breathe and perceive smell and even taste.
Other symptoms of chronic sinusitis include:
- Chronic congestion
- Postnasal drainage, or feeling mucus on the back of the throat
- Thick discharge from nose
- Tenderness around eyes, nose, cheeks
Although the direct cause of CRS remains unclear, doctors noticed that patients with GERD also tend to develop CRS. After observing the patients for around 2 years, scientists found that patients with GERD were at a higher risk of developing CRS than healthy patients. This same group was also more likely to develop a form of CRS that occurs without nasal polyps.
Possible reasons for the increased risk include:
- Prolonged exposure to stomach contents in the esophagus may have reached the nasopharynx, which directly connects to the nasal cavity
- Constant exposure to reflux material could contribute to the development of CRS
- The acid, pepsin, trypsin, and bile being regurgitated can damage parts of the sinus that lead to sinus dysfunction and create an environment for invasive bacteria to grow
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Treatment For Deviated Septum
A deviated septum is treated by a surgical procedure called a septoplasty. There is a newer less invasive form of septoplasty where an endoscope is used to remove the deviated septum. An endoscopic septoplasty can be assisted by TRACT, a newly approved balloon that when inflated in the nose, destabilizes the septum and makes the endoscopic removal easier. Dr. Atkins was the second surgeon in the country to perform a septoplasty using TRACT and has had great success using this technique. Many septoplasties are now performed in the office under IV sedation, so the patient doesnt have to go to the hospital.
Why Does A Reflux Diagnosis Take So Long
Part of this issue is due to medical specialization.
The trend towards medical specialization has intensified over the last 50 years while simultaneously disenfranchising primary care physicians . Each specialist including lung doctors, ENT doctors and GI specialists just takes care of one part of the body. This has led to specialists who are unable to diagnose / treat reflux because they dont understand how the respiratory and digestive tracts are connected. They are directly connected at the upper esophageal valve, which is supposed to protect against reflux in the throat. There is also a direct connection between the throat and the lungs at the level of the vocal cords.
I have taken care of thousands of patients with reflux over the course of my career, and almost all have seen multiple specialists including PCPs, allergists, otolaryngologists, pulmonologists, and gastroenterologists.
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Treating Gerd Eases Sinus Problems And Doctors Are Starting To Find Out Why
THURSDAY, May 27, 2004 â Specialists treating acid reflux disease or chronic sinusitis have long noticed the two ailments tend to go hand-in-hand.
Now, scientists believe they are reaching a better understanding of the link between troubled stomachs and stuffy noses.
Acid reflux disease âis probably not the cause of sinusitis, but it may be participating in some cases,â said Dr. Timothy Smith, a professor of otolaryngology and chief of rhinology and sinus surgery at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.
Sinus specialists see the two conditions âintersecting fairly consistently in clinical practice,â he added.
Millions of Americans suffer from heartburn and discomfort linked to gastroesophageal reflux disease , a condition characterized by frequent entry into the esophagus of harsh stomach acids. Besides being uncomfortable, GERD raises risks for more serious conditions, such as esophagitis, Barrettâs esophagus and even esophageal cancer.
An estimated 34 million Americans also suffer from chronic sinusitis, which is characterized by inflammation of the nasal passages. The inflammation shrinks the passages so mucus canât drain properly, causing the discomfort and infection that are hallmarks of sinusitis.
And a large proportion of sinus patients are also affected by acid reflux. However, connections between the two ailments have remained unclear.
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Treatment Of Nasal Polyps
There is good news for patients with sinus polyps. In the past, the only option we had was surgical treatment which involved just removing the polyps and hoping they didn’t come back this was historically very ineffective and patients had frequent recurrences of their polyps. Now, due to technologies such as Propel, patients undergoing polyp surgery can have small absorbable devices placed in their sinus cavities that dissolve during the month following the surgery. These small devices contain steroids which dissolve into the sinus passages and help cut down on the recurrence.
The other advantage of these devices is that they have a spring type effect that keeps the sinuses open. That’s very important for post-operative care, because many patients need to use nasal steroids and saline rinses after their polyps are removed, but their sinuses often close down making the rinses ineffective. By keeping the sinuses open, thus allowing the medicines to get into the root of the sinuses, the results have improved dramatically for patients suffering from sinus polyps.
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Do You Have Lpr: Reaching A Diagnosis
If you think you have LPR, get in touch with an ENT doctor or an otolaryngologist to investigate the nature of your symptoms. You may be recommended to take the following tests:
- Upper endoscopy: Although this procedure is known to diagnose GERD, it can also be helpful in diagnosing LPR. Instead of investigating the esophagus, the examiner can view the upper part of the throat and use physical manifestations of the condition along the throat. You can learn more in our previous post: A Complete Overview of Upper GI Endoscopy.
- pH test: Similar to an endoscopy, a pH monitoring test involves the insertion of a catheter down the nose to detect acid. This can help localize the damage from the reflux, which will determine if you have LPR or GERD.
Behavioral And Other Factors
As mentioned above, body weight is a significant factor in promoting reflux of stomach acid, and weight reduction is helpful.
Pregnancy will markedly increase symptoms of heartburn and sometimes throat symptoms as well. This is partly due to the space taken up by the growing infant. One should avoid clothing that fits tightly across the midsection of the body. It is helpful to practice abdominal or diaphragmatic breathing. This means you should concentrate on pushing out the stomach with each breath instead of expanding the chest. Avoid slumping when sitting down. Avoid bending or stooping as much as you can.
For many people, reflux occurs most often at night and sets up the irritation that continues to bother during the daytime. One of the most important things you can do is to elevate the head of your bed. To do this, use blocks, books or bricks underneath the legs at the head of the bed. The elevation should be 4-6 inches or so, but not high enough that you will slide down when sleeping. Professional singers with acid reflux should consider traveling with blocks in their suitcase for use in hotel rooms.
The use of multiple pillows to get the head up is not effective because it causes the body to curl unless the pillows are maintained under the shoulders in addition to the head. Wedge-shaped pillows can be helpful in this regard.
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What To Do If You Think You Have Acid Refluxand Not Allergies
So what should you do if you think your symptoms are silent reflux and not seasonal allergies or a cold after all?
You can start with a two-week elimination diet, Dr. Koufman suggested. That means no alcohol, nothing from a can , and cutting way back on dairy and coffee. You should also stick to low-fat, low-acidic foods, and you might want to avoid spicy or fried foods, which are also thought to trigger reflux. Tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and garlic may also spark reflux symptoms, so eat them sparingly.
If you truly have silent reflux, these diet changes can likely help clear up your symptoms, and you can adopt some of these healthier eating habits for good if they keep silent reflux at bay.
According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases , tiny tweaks to your regular routine can help quell silent reflux, just as they can ease other types of the condition. Try not to eat or drink anything too close to bedtimefinish up three hours before you go to sleep, Dr. Koufman recommended. Prop your pillow up when you do hit the hay, as sleeping on an incline can help keep stomach acids where they belong.
If you still have worries about whether you’re dealing with acid reflux over allergies, it’s always a good idea to talk with your healthcare provider about possible options that can help get you some relief.
Acid Reflux Treatment In New York
This a very common and under diagnosed condition that is also know as GERD , LPR , Silent Acid Reflux and Heartburn. This condition can occur acutely, chronically or in recurrent episodes and can affect all age groups from infants to the elderly. It occurs when stomach acid or pepsin refluxes up into the throat, nose, sinus and inner ear causing inflammation, irritation and swelling of these structures.
SYMPTOMS: Very often acid reflux can mimic a cold, sinus infection, tonsillitis or bronchitis. Symptoms include throat irritation, scratchy throat, sore throat, low grade fever, fatigue, poor sleep, frequent throat clearing, feeling of swelling or lump in throat, mucous in throat, dry and spastic cough, hoarseness, post nasal drip, nasal congestion, sinus congestion, ear pressure and popping, bad breath, tongue irritation, dental problems and gum inflammation. A patent may or may not have associated heartburn or stomach symptoms. In fact, most patients have no stomach or heartburn symptoms at all this is Silent Acid Reflux.
CAUSES: Over production of stomach acid, delayed emptying of acid from the stomach, weak lower esophagus sphincter, gastritis, medications, stress, alcohol, fatty and fried foods, acid foods and beverage, being overweight, sleep apnea / snoring, anxiety, exercise, overeating and congenital/ hereditary factors.
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Sore Throat And Cough
The constant presence of mucus draining down your throat causes irritation. Your voice can be raspy and sore in a way thats different from a regular sore throat. In fact, your throat symptoms may not even start until the later stages of a cold for example, when youre otherwise feeling better but your nose is still draining. This is a very common complication of postnasal drip.
An Acidic Stomach And A Stuffy Nose
Its hard to imagine that an acidic stomach and a stuffy nose could be related. After all, your stomach is the midway point of your body and digests food, while your nose is located in your head where it draws in oxygen and enhances the taste of that food. To make things more confusing, if you were to have a problem with either of these organs youd most likely see a specialist, and often times these specialists dont make the link between your stomach and your nose.
A stuffy nose, sinusitis, nasal congestion and a number of other problems can be due to a condition called GERD . GERD occurs when stomach acid backs up into the esophagus. You may think thats a long way for stomach acid to travel but if we look at our anatomy it makes sense. The nose drains into the throat and esophagus the esophagus drains into the stomach connected only by a valve. Thats it. There are no other filters or buffers along the way. If that valve doesnt work properly, acid can back up into the esophagus and then to the nose. In other words, heartburn is stomach acid making its way into your esophagus that same stomach acid can travel all the way to your nose and cause inflammation. In an attempt to rid your nose of this harsh acid , it produces more mucous and thus a stuffy nose.
What are the solutions? In most cases, GERD can be reduced or eliminated by altering your diet. The idea is to eat foods that dont increase stomach acid. Acid inducing foods include:
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