For the majority of people, heartburn is nothing more than an occasional annoyance. However, there are at least nineteen million individuals who suffer from a more severe chronic form of heartburn: gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). And if left untreated its symptoms can lead to a number of significant health problems. Here are the top five reasons why symptoms of GERD should never be ignored!
When you have GERD, things such as food, acid, and digestive fluids travel back into your esophagus. Over a period of time, this can lead to an uncomfortable irritation, along with swelling, which is known as esophagitis. When your body has acid exposure in your esophagus for an extended period of time (even just a couple of weeks), you can develop inflammation in the lining, which can be incredibly uncomfortable and even painful. It can also allow the esophagus to become more prone to further detrimental erosion and scarring.