Acid Reflux Medications

There are many types of acid reflux medicine available; find out about how each one works and how it affects your body. Examples of acid reflux medication include:

Antacids

Antacids, such as Alka-Seltzer, Maalox, Mylanta, Pepto-Bismol, Rolaids, and Riopan, are drugs that are used to neutralize the acids in your stomach. Most antacids come with three different salts aluminum, calcium, and magnesium. Antacids simply combine these salts using different dosages and formulations. Combined with bicarbonate ions, these salts serve to render harmless the acids in your stomach, at least for a period of time. Beware, though: Antacids can cause constipation, especially when taken excessively.

Foaming agents

Foaming agents, such as Gaviscon, prevent acid reflux by covering your stomach with foam. Usually, these drugs are only prescribed to those who have suffered little or no damage to their esophagus because if acid reflux.

H2 blockers

H2 blockers, such as cimetidine (Tagamet HB), famotidine (Pepcid AC), nizatidine (Axid AR), and ranitidine (Zantac 75), are substances that slow down the production of acids. H2 blockers have been proven to be very effective when it comes to providing short-term relief, but they do not work for everyone and must not be sued for more than a few consecutive weeks. H2 blockers are often more effective when taken before sleeping in combination with a proton pump inhibitor.

Proton pump inhibitors

These include omeprazole (Prilosec), lansoprazole (Prevacid), pantoprazole (Protonix), rabeprazole (Aciphex), and esomeprazole (Nexium). All these drugs are available with a prescription. Proton pump inhibitors are more effective than H2 blockers and can help just about everyone suffering from acid reflux.

See Your MD

If you have been suffering from heartburn or acid reflux symptoms for a while, you should definitely see your doctor. In fact, you might want to visit several types of doctors.

Aside from your general physician, consulting specialists like internists and gastroenterologists may be beneficial to you. Internists are doctors who specialize in internal medicine while gastroenterologists treat ailments of the stomach and the intestines.

Between these two medical professionals, you should be able to come up with an idea of what ails you, as well as what can be done to alleviate the symptoms that you suffer from. Most of the time, acid reflux sufferers will have to make a few simple lifestyle changes, but in the more serious cases, surgery may be required.

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