People take antacids of all kinds when they get an upset stomach and do not know they may have a hiatal hernia, and/or GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease also known as Acid Reflux,) many times confused with a heart problem, all the more reason to get checked out thoroughly for a process of elimination, I know I didn’t. A hernia allows the stomach to protrude into the esophagus and splash hydrochloric acid into the esophagus that can cause Barrett’s Esophagus, erosions, cell changes. After an endoscopy and a biopsy, many problems can be diagnosed, and should be. Then one has to watch for changes to a dysplasia or a precancerous condition which would then require surgery, all of which may have been preventable with proper tests and treatments with stronger antacids in prescription form. Also helpful is a special diet that is more bland without strong spices or other irritants.
I used to get a very bloated feeling like I had swallowed a lot of air and it felt like it got up as far as my throat then just stayed there. I chewed the antacids many others buy that would relieve it somewhat. I also had frequent heartburn, especially during pregnancies, and my only description is a feeling of wanting to put the fire out in your throat.
When I had my first episode of severe pain in the center of my chest by the sternum, right through to my back, it felt like I was being stabbed, crushed and squeezed tight all at the same time, my closest description. I had no idea what was wrong and the pain got so bad it mimicked what I perceived to be a heart attack, and many times, I later learned, is mistaken in emergency rooms for a heart attack and treated wrongly as such.
I was at a new job on my first day when I had severe pain that occurred so I had to leave and come home. I don’t know why I ran water in the bathtub but at the time I thought I was just uptight from starting a new job and I began soaking in the tub. The pain was so bad I then began to think I would slide under the water and drown and no one would know why unless I got out of the tub, which I did. I had no idea it was acid reflux at the time, I had not heard of it. I personally found out if I immediately drank a large glass of ice water it was like diluting and distinguishing flames as I got almost immediate relief so I now carry a bottle of cold water with me at all times., preferably ice water.
I could not take the stronger medications and had to try several before I got some relief. I had to experiment with food that did and did not agree with me and I was quite miserable for a few years. If I can save just one person from the agony I had for a few years before my reflux was managed this article will be worth my time and yours. Any stomach problems, heartburn, indigestion, get help, tests, immediately, it will be worth it.