One in 10 Americans has heartburn or acid reflux at least once a week, according to the American Gastroenterological Association. Whether you're one of the lucky few who generally has an iron stomach -- or you need heartburn relief nearly every day -- rest assured: You can soothe the burn.
Start by getting to know your local pharmacist. Uniquely trained in drug interactions and side effects, pharmacists can help you look at the medications you're already taking, uncover any potential side effects...
Do you experience hoarseness or worsening of asthma after meals, lying down, or exercise, or asthma that occurs mainly at night?
Are you experiencing unexplained weight loss or loss of appetite?
Do your heartburn symptoms interfere with your lifestyle or daily activity?
Are you in need of increasing doses of nonprescription medicine to control heartburn?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, your heartburn warrants attention from a medical professional. People with long-standing chronic heartburn are at greater risk for serious complications including stricture (narrowing) of the esophagus or a potentially precancerous condition called Barrett's esophagus.