Reduce or Prevent Heartburn, Acid Reflux, or GERD with Traditional Chinese Medicine

Heartburn can be a sign of acid reflux or its chronic form, GERD or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease. GERD is a disorder that causes stomach acid and contents to reflux or regurgitate into the esophagus.

The stomach acid can inflame and injure the lining of the esophagus, although sometimes no indication of inflammation can be seen in some patients. Relatively healthy people have a lower esophagus sphincter that remains closed, hindering stomach content from going back into the esophagus. Heartburn is the burning that can be felt in the mid to upper chest and is caused by the same malfunctioning of the esophagus.

Besides heartburn, the signs of symptoms of acid reflux/GERD include a change in the person’s voice, sore throat, nausea, chronic bronchitis, asthma, and coughing. A stress filled lifestyle as well as chocolate, spicy and fatty foods, acidic fruit juices, tomatoes, and caffeine can also lead to heartburn.

According to the National Institutes for Health and World Health Organization traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) treatments such as acupuncture in Jacksonville can be a natural form of treatment for acid reflux or GERD and many other digestive conditions like colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, ulcers, gastritis, and food allergies.

GERD is seen by Western medicine as having one main cause, which is different to TCM that views the condition as having several possible different diagnoses, known as patterns. According to TCM, the digestive function of the stomach is aided by the spleen, liver, pancreas, and gallbladder; when these organs dysfunction, it causes an imbalance in the digestive system causing heartburn and acid reflux/GERD to occur.

Emotional stress that disrupts the flow of vital energy or Chi can also contribute to acid reflux/GERD. Emotional stress tends to affect a cranial nerve (vagus nerve) that controls stomach secretion causing a rise in secretion of various gastric acids as well as contraction of the stomach muscles.

Qi gong, Tai Chi, Chinese herbal medicine, acupuncture and other TCM procedures can be used to help treat acid reflux/GERD. These treatments have the power to balance the functions of the digestive organs, regulate esophageal pressure, and lower gastric acid content.

Your acupuncturist can diagnose your condition after evaluating you. A plan of treatment is then made to address the symptoms as well as the underlying cause of the problem. Besides the above mentioned TCM treatments, a dietary modification and stress management plan will be suggested by your acupuncturist to prevent heartburn and acid reflux/GERD.

TCM treatments restore the healthy flow of Chi and decrease emotional stress. Acupuncture treatment stimulates specific acupuncture points to prevent the relaxation of the lower esophageal sphincter helping reduce or prevent the occurrence of heartburn and acid reflux/GERD. Acupuncture points chosen for treatment are found in the legs, lower arms, and in the stomach area.

Moderate regular exercise, good sleeping patterns, lifestyle changes along with TCM treatments can lead to the restoration of proper digestion and prevention of heartburn, acid reflux, and GERD.

Millions of People All Over the World Suffer from Acid Reflux

Acid reflux is a global health problem that literally affects millions of people around the world and usually affects the sleep, cuisine choices, and temperament of the sufferer. The gastric fluids in the digestive system reenter the esophagus through a weak Lower Esophageal Sphincter (LES) valve. This leads to burning pain in the esophagus and the abdomen. Other acid reflux symptoms include burning sensation in the chest, a bitter taste in the mouth, cough, and nausea. GERD can be treated through natural therapies, surgery, exercises, and dietary modifications.

When it comes to treating acid reflux, health practitioners usually have a difference in opinion. Western conventional treatment, food habit changes, acidity control, and natural treatments are some of the ways used by a growing number of doctors in treating acid reflux. By controlling the way they eat their foods and selecting the right foods to eat, most acid reflux sufferers are able to control their food habits.

In addition to that, it is also necessary to avoid caffeine, tobacco, drugs and alcohol and to reduce weight to prevent the rise of acid reflux. If left untreated, gastroesophageal reflux disorders (GERD) can result in cancer in the esophagus which may entail surgery.

Since ancient times, herbs have been used as remedies for acid reflux although there is still no scientific data to prove their effectiveness in treating acid reflux. Acid reflux treatment with acupuncture can help treat GERD symptom by selecting acupoints that will help lessen acid reflux, heartburn and stress.

Acupuncture works in treating acid reflux by influencing the release of chemicals that can help overcome the burning sensation, pain, vomiting, and giddiness of the patient. On the other hand, acupressure works in a similar vein albeit by adding pressure to acupoints instead of sticking needles into them.

Medication causes multiple side effects which may even be much worse than the condition it is trying to treat. A lot of the drugs to regulate stomach acidity help lessen the secretion of gastric acid which radically increases the probability of poisoned food, lessens the digestion ability, and increases the likelihood of infections. The cost of this kind of treatment is a fraction of what patients pay to prescription drugs

It is mandatory to maximize your daily intake of water if you are suffering from acid reflux as it can restore the health of the abdomen by helping dilute acidity. Acupuncture treatment plus a timely and nutritional diet is quite helpful for those suffering from GERD or acid reflux.

Basic dietary recommendation such chewing one’s food in controlled amounts and eating slowly are highly recommended by acupuncturists. Added restrictions are imposed on getting adequate amounts of sleep and exercises.

Alida van Heerden is a licensed New York acupuncturist and a NADA certified acupuncture detoxification specialist.

Chinese Herbs and Acupuncture Are Extremely Effective in Treating or Even Curing Acid Reflux

Acid reflux is a condition a lot of acupuncturists frequently encounter problem. Happily, this problem responds extremely well with Chinese herbs and acupuncture.

Gastrointestinal Reflux Disease (GERD or GIRD) happens occurs when acid in the stomach improperly flows back into the esophageal tract. A lot of individuals occasionally experience this problem but for about 30% of Americans, GERD has become a chronic condition that affects their life in a big way. In the West, the most common medical treatment for GERD is the intake pharmaceutical drugs that either lower the production or neutralize stomach acid. They can provide temporal relief and are safe to use for occasional heartburns. But if used often enough, these drugs can have adverse side effects. For example, the magnesium hydroxide, sodium compounds, aluminum hydroxide, and calcium that antacids are made of can have a variety of side effects.

Magnesium hydroxide (milk of magnesia) – considered a laxative, too much intake of this compound can lead to hyper-magnesia particularly affects patients with renal failure. Hyper-magnesia may lead to neurological and cardiovascular conditions.

Sodium – too much sodium intake can lead to various renal conditions, heart failure, and hypertension in the arteries.

Aluminum hydroxide – long term use of this compound can result in osteomalacia and hypophosphatemia. Renal weakness and constipation may also result.

Carbonate – high and regular intake of this may result in alkalosis that consequentially can lead to kidney stones and polyuria (frequent urination). When hydrochloric acid and carbonate is combined it produces carbon dioxide that may in turn cause gastric distension as well as poor muscle flexibility and headaches.

Side effects associated with GERD medications such as Protonix, Aciphex, Prilosec, Nexium and others include:

-Constipation
-Vomiting
-Stomach pain
-Nausea
-Headaches
-Flatulence
-Diarrhea
-Constipation
-Gynecomastia (male enlargement of the breast, rare)

The long term use of these drugs may lead to more significant health problems including a greater tendency to develop dementia, nutritional imbalance and a high susceptibility to infections.

Acid Reflux Acupuncture Treatment in Bellingham

Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture are very effective in helping treat or manage acid reflux, sometimes even completely curing it. Acupuncturists will initially examine the patient and the symptoms manifested by the disorder. From this, they formulate a plan of treatment that is uniquely customized for the patient. This type of customized treatment is why acupuncture and Chinese herbs is often extremely effective.