Heartburn is a common discomfort that 40% of Americans endure at least once a month. It’s usually relieved by over the counter drugs and quickly forgotten.
However, chronic heartburn can be a sign of a more serious illness like GERD. If left untreated, GERD can cause patients to have a narrowed esophagus, develop an esophageal ulcer, or Barrett’s esophagus.
With these complications, you’re at a greater risk for esophageal cancer, respiratory issues, and problems swallowing. With Dexilant, you can heal the esophagus, stop heartburn, and live a healthy life.
Continue reading our guide to find out how it works.
What is GERD?
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a disorder that affects digestion and causes heartburn. When you swallow, the round muscular formation around the base of your esophagus called the lower esophageal sphincter loosens. This enables food and liquid to enter your stomach. The sphincter will close afterward.
If the sphincter isn’t functioning correctly or becomes weak, stomach acid will push back up into your esophagus. The backwash, also known as acid reflux, will cause irritation and inflammation of the tissues lining the esophagus.
Most people have a little acid reflux every once in a while. It can occur after consuming high amounts of caffeine, tomatoes, red wine, and spicy foods. But with GERD the symptoms are ongoing and arise once or twice a week.
Depending on your level of discomfort, you might be able to treat GERD with dietary changes. However, some people need medication.
Symptoms of GERD
You should see a doctor if the GERD symptoms you’re experiencing are severe or you find yourself taking over the counter (OTC) medications for heartburn multiple times each week.
Common symptoms include:
- Chest pains
- Problems sleeping
- Increased difficulties from asthma
- Feeling like there’s a lump in your throat
- Vomiting small amounts of food or sour liquids
- Constant heartburn after eating with it worsening at night
Sometimes, GERD is treated with surgery or prescription medications. Alert your doctor if you have GERD and are also experiencing signs of a heart attack. Such as arm or jaw pain and shortness of breath.
Risk Factors of GERD
Like many diseases, there is a list of ailments and habits that put a person at a greater risk of being diagnosed with GERD.
You are at a higher risk for GERD if you:
- Are obese
- Are pregnant
- Have a hiatal hernia
- Have scleroderma, or systemic sclerosis
- Have gastroparesis (delayed stomach emptying)
If you have been diagnosed with GERD or believe you have it. Certain behaviors can worsen the condition.
These behaviors include:
- Taking aspirin
- Eating fatty and fried foods
- Drinking caffeine (coffee, soda, tea)
- Consuming high amounts of alcohol especially red wine
Your symptoms of GERD can significantly decrease by removing some of these triggers from your daily routine.
Treating GERD with Dexilant
Dexilant is the brand name of dexlansoprazole. It’s a drug that’s approved to treat both children and adults who are living with GERD.
Children between the ages of 12 and 17 who experience heartburn up to 3 times a week are expected to have GERD. While adults are when they have heartburn twice or more each week.
Dexilant decreases the discomfort and symptoms while repairing the lining of the esophagus. In most cases, treatment with this drug lasts between 4 weeks and 6 months.
How Does Dexilant Work?
Dexilant falls into the drug class of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). PPIs work by reducing the amount of acid that’s produced by glands in your stomach.
Dexilant comes in capsule 30 and 60mg capsules. The capsules include two different types of granules. This results in a dual delayed release action.
The first dose of medication is released into your body within an hour of you taking it. While the second dose is released 4 to 5 hours later.
A Dexilant prescription is commonly written by a doctor for an 8-week period. This s usually enough time for the esophagus to heal from the constant contact with acid.
In other cases, the prescription will be much longer to treat ongoing heartburn and to facilitate additional healing.
Dexilant can also be prescribed by a doctor to treat stomach ulcers, which isn’t on its label. Don’t use Dexilant for other purposes without your doctor’s orders.
Dexilant Warnings and Side Effects
While Dexilant can relieve your symptoms, it doesn’t rule out more serious stomach or digestive diseases. Always speak to your doctor about symptoms and illnesses prior to taking Dexilant.
Commonly reported side effects in adults who have taken Dexilant include:
- Stomach pain
- Common cold
Tell your doctor right away if you experience stomach pain, watery stool, or a fever that doesn’t break.
Allergic reactions have been reported by patients using this drug.
Signs of a Dexilant allergy are:
- Tight throat
- Facial swelling
- Difficulty breathing
If you think you’re allergic to Dexilant, discontinue use and contact your doctor immediately.
You should always speak to your doctor about medications and supplements you are taking before they write a prescription for something else.
Don’t take Dexilant if you are taking a medication that contains any of the following:
- Ketoconazole (for hair loss)
- Ampicillin (treats bacterial infections)
- Methotrexate (used to treat certain cancers)
- Tacrolimus (prescribed after organ transplants)
Dexilant can interact with these drugs and others to increase side effects, cause bodily harm, or overdoses.
Where to Find Dexilant
So, you’ve been diagnosed with GERD, but your local pharmacy’s price for Dexilant is outside of your range. Don’t allow this to discourage you from filling your prescription. You can find your medication at a much lower price online.
You’ll see a 50-90% discount on the posted rates.
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