Allergy & Asthma Care Information - gastric reflux (gerd) and asthma

  1. Asthma (especially nighttime and early morning asthma) can be significantly worsened by gastroesophageal reflux disease (also called GERD or heartburn). This occurs mainly because nerves provoked by esophageal irritation or burning are also the same nerves that can squeeze the airways in the lung. Therefore, pain in the esophagus triggers a reflex constriction in the airways and asthma symptoms. Acid spilling up the esophagus can also directly inflame the upper throat or vocal cords and may be aspirated into the upper airways at times
  2. To avoid heartburn (G.E.R.D.) we recommend that patients should avoid certain factors that trigger acid secretion or reflux. These include caffeine, tea, Theophylline, alcohol, aspirin, or nonsteroidal pain medications (Motrin, Advil, Indocin, etc.), and spicy foods. The patient should also try to avoid chocolate and acidic juices such as orange juice or grapefruit juice, which can also cause increased gastroesophageal reflux.
  3. One very helpful strategy is to raise the head of the bed 2-4 inches off the ground. This is done by placing the headboard of the bed on 3 inch thick wood blocks or possibly bricks or old books or some other objects to help raise the entire head of the bed. Tilting the bed allows gravity to help keep acid in the stomach and prevent acid from trickling up the throat into the mouth.

If you would like additional detailed information on gastric reflux and asthma, contact us and make an appointment at our clinic.

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Located in Medford, Oregon with satellite offices in Grants Pass, Ashland, and Klamath Falls, the Allergy and Asthma Center of Southern Oregon, PC offers exceptional care for patients with allergies and asthma.

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