When a patient experiences heartburn, acid in their stomach leaks into esophagus creating a burning discomfort in the upper abdomen or right below the breast bone. Good news is that today lots of anti-acid medications are available.
Heartburn medication list helping the patients to ease their symptoms is quite long. They are divided into prescription and non-prescription heartburn drugs. Prescription heartburn meds can be grouped into the following categories:
- H2 blockers for heartburn and reflux – ease heartburn symptoms and cure reflux. Histamine generates acid formation, specifically after eating and H2 blockers as the most typical acid reflux disease medication are recommended to be taken half hour before then or right before sleep to inhibit the acid formation.
Side effects of such meds may sometimes include headache, pain in abdominal area, diarrhea, gas, nausea, dizziness, runny nose and sore throat.
- Proton pump inhibitors for heartburn and reflux: recommended to be taken 1 hour before eating. Generally it is considered that all the medications used to treat GERD work pretty much the same.
Side effects of these preparations sometimes include headache, pain in abdominal are, diarrhea, bloating, nausea, gas and constipation.
- Promotility agents for heartburn and reflux: work by stimulating gastrointestinal tract muscles which sometimes helps preventing acids from remaining in stomach for too long as well as making the lower esophageal sphincter stronger by decreasing reflux into esophagus.
Side effects of some of such medications used for GERD are fatigue, drowsiness, diarrhea, movement issues and restlessness.
Non-prescription heartburn drugs may be categorized in the next way:
- Antacids for heartburn: balance stomach acid in order to ease heartburn symptoms, sour stomach, indigestion of acid and stomach upset. In some cases prescribed to help ease the pain from ulcers.
Side effects may happen with overuse and overdose of the preparation and can include diarrhea, constipation, stomach cramps and change of bowel movements color.
- Acid reducers for heartburn: H2 antagonists/H2 blockers and PPIs work to reduce acid formation in stomach; generally helps within 2 weeks.
- Combination of antacid and acid reducer for heartburn: combine acid-neutralizing capability of antacid and antacid-reducing activities of acid-blocker med.