Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) occurs when acid from the stomach backs up into the esophagus. Normally, when a person eats food, it travels from his or her mouth, into the esophagus, and then the stomach. The lower esophageal sphincter (LES) at the base of the esophagus contracts to keep food and acid in the stomach. In a person who has GERD, the acid refluxes, or comes back up, into the esophagus. This causes an intense burning sensation.

Occasional heartburn is normal, but if you experience persistant, intense heartburn more than two times per week, you may have GERD.

GERD can affect any person of any age. People who are overweight or pregnant may be at greater risk for GERD because of the extra pressure placed on the stomach. Certain lifestyle choices may also contribute to GERD, such as drinking alcohol, smoking, and consuming large amounts of citrus, tomatoes, chocolate, caffeinated drinks, fried or spicy foods.

Ear, nose, and throat specialists are equipped to diagnose and treat GERD and the accompanying symptoms, like sinus and ear infections, esophageal ulcerations, and throat and laryngeal inflammation. If you frequently have chest pain or heartburn after eating, have trouble swallowing, or experience a cough or sore throat unrelated to illness, it may be time to visit your ENT professional.

Back to Blog

With 3 convenient locations across the Orlando area, we’re never far away.

Find your ENT Request Appointment
Contact us media
Accessibility: If you are vision-impaired or have some other impairment covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act or a similar law, and you wish to discuss potential accommodations related to using this website, please contact our Accessibility Manager at .