Acid reflux is a medical condition that can be problematic for several reasons. It can be painful, cause stress, and it can cause damage to the intestinal and digestive system if left untreated. Acid reflux is treatable, and the sooner you get a treatment plan for your reflux, the sooner your stomach and associated organs can heal. Acid reflux should never go untreated.
There are several reasons why acid would reflux back into the esophagus and cause heartburn. There may be structural problems such as a hiatal hernia, which is an abnormality where part of the stomach protrudes through the diaphragm and into the chest. Heartburn can be caused by what you eat and drink, and it can be caused by your daily habits, such as smoking or overeating. Most cases of acid reflux can be treated. Certain things may need to be eliminated from your life, and you may need to be on a special diet and medication, but you can get the reflux under control.
When acid builds in your stomach and travels back up the esophagus, it can cause discomfort and pain. Typically the pain is felt in the stomach, chest and abdomen. But it can also radiate into other places, such as the upper back. Not everyone will feel pain in their back with acid reflux, but this can depend on how severe the case of reflux is, how often you are getting it and how sensitive to pain you may be. Because acid creates a burning sensation, it is typical for this pain to travel to other areas.
Treating the back pain associated with reflux requires you to first treat the reflux. Some people may think that they simply have back problems along with the reflux. They many not realize the back pain is related and may start to take other medications, such as NSAIDS, for the pain. However, caution should be taken when trying to treat the back pain. Other medications have the potential to make the reflux worse, and if the reflux gets worse, the back pain can get worse, too.
In order to treat the back pain, a doctor should see you and diagnose the reflux. If he determines the problem is stemming from reflux, he can prescribe medications for you and may put you on a special diet to treat the problem. As the reflux gets better, the back pain associated with it should also get better. Diet is important in treating the reflux and will in turn also treat the back pain. If you follow your doctor's plan, the back pain should alleviate itself.
It is never a good idea to assume that one problem is related to the other. You should always consult with your physician to make sure the back pain is related to the reflux and get a professional diagnosis. When trying to treat yourself you can cause more harm than good. Some people may also assume the two are related if they have had reflux in the past, which caused them back pain as well. However, each time an episode occurs, you should always talk to your doctor and have him confirm the two are definitely related.