First Time User? Sign Up Now
For the visually-impaired, please click here.
Home > Health Library > Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Reflux means that stomach acid and juices move back up into your esophagus, the tube that leads from the throat to the stomach. This can cause heartburn, ulcers, and pain and swelling in your esophagus (esophagitis). When you have heartburn that bothers you often, it's called gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD.
You can treat GERD with lifestyle changes, like quitting smoking and making changes in your diet to avoid foods that make your heartburn worse. You can also change your eating habits, such as not eating late at night. Your doctor may also suggest medicines.
Current as of: February 10, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Arvydas D. Vanagunas MD - Gastroenterology & Steven J. Atlas MD, MPH - Internal Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2021 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.