Heartburn or acid reflux is something that almost everyone has dealt with at one time or another and can be very discomforting, and to some, even debilitating. The good news is that now there are many different options and medications that can be used to treat heartburn or acid reflux. So many in fact, it may be a little overwhelming.
One of the most common ways to treat stomach acid and relieve heartburn, acid reflux, upset
stomach, or indigestion is to use a antacid. These are a great option for those who do not regularly suffer from acid reflux, and are looking for a quick way to neutralize an upset stomach. Antacids typically don’t have harsh side effects, and include commonly known drugs like Alka-Seltzer, Tums, Milk of Magnesia, Maalox, Mylanta, Rolaids, and Pepto-Bismol.
Another option that is more commonly used by reoccurring acid reflux sufferers is an acid blocker. The two main types of acid blockers are histamine antagonists (H2 antagonist) and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). Histamine antagonists are used to reduce the secretion of gastric acid where as PPIs work by irreversibly blocking the gastric proton pump. Some of the popular acid blockers are: Axid, Pepcid AC, Tagamet, Zantac, Prilosec, and Prevacid.
Possible serious side effects of acid blockers include, chest tightness, sore throat, fever, bleeding, weakness, and unusual fatigue should be reported to your doctor. Other, less serious side effects like headache, dizziness, or diarrhea, will usually go away on their own.
If you only have the occasional heartburn after a spicy meal, than antacids would probably be the best solution for your heartburn. If your heartburn is more serious, or you have it on a continual basis, an acid blocker would probably best suite your needs.
Whatever the case, the best bet is to visit your doctor and talk it over with him.
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