Treatment for GERD

How is GERD treated?

Your health care provider will make a care plan for you based on:

  • Your age, overall health, and past health
  • How serious your case is
  • How well you handle certain medicines, treatments, or therapies
  • If your condition is expected to get worse
  • What you would like to do

In many cases making diet and lifestyle changes can help reduce GERD symptoms. Always check with your health care provider before making any changes.

If you have GERD, be careful about what you eat and drink. Don’t have too much of the following:

  • Fried and fatty foods
  • Peppermint
  • Chocolate
  • Alcohol
  • Citrus fruit and juices
  • Tomato products
  • Drinks with caffeine, such as coffee, soda, and energy drinks

You should also:

  • Eat smaller portions
  • Not overeat
  • Quit smoking
  • Not drink too much alcohol
  • Wait a few hours after eating before you lie down or go to bed
  • Lose weight if needed
  • Raise the head of your bed 6 inches by putting bricks or cinderblocks under the bed legs

Be sure to check any medicines you are taking. Some may cause problems with the lining of your stomach or esophagus. You may also want to talk to your health care provider about:

  • Taking medicines to reduce your stomach acid (antacids)
  • Taking medicines called H2-blockers and protein pump inhibitors. Taking these medicines before eating may stop heartburn from happening.
  • Taking medicines that help to empty food from your stomach (promotility medicines). You will need a prescription for these.
  • Having surgery called fundoplication. This is sometimes done to help keep the esophagus in the right place and to stop the backward flow of fluid (reflux).

Back to list