Sandra Pompey, a retired veterinary technician, has always led an active lifestyle. She eats healthy, exercises and travels the world participating in animal rescue projects. Throughout most of her adult life, though, she has lived with severe acid reflux, a disease that imposes on her daily routine.
Acid reflux occurs when acid from the stomach goes up into the esophagus. This manifests as burning in the chest, or heartburn. Many people may experience acid reflux after eating a spicy meal. This type of acid reflux is temporary and usually goes away on its own, or with the help of an antacid.
People who experience persistent acid reflux more than two days per week are often diagnosed with gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD. Typical symptoms of GERD are heartburn and regurgitation, which can happen when you’re standing, but more frequently when lying down.
Pompey was diagnosed with GERD more than 20 years ago. To help alleviate her symptoms, she was taking proton pump inhibitors, medications that reduce stomach acid production. In addition to the medication, Pompey would frequently use antacid chews to soothe the heartburn she experienced.