Acidity is a common problem that affects most of us a few times each month due to our unhealthy eating habits and a lifestyle which is, by and large, sedentary.
Though we are quick to diagnose acidity or the presence of Gastro Esophagal Reflux Disease (GERD) on seeing symptoms like heartburn or a pain in the chest, bloating, burping, nausea, flatulence and/ or regurgitation of the eaten food back into the food pipe, most of us do not realize that a chronic sore throat might also be indicative of acidity.
There have been instances where people wondered why their sore throat remedies won’t work just because they did not realize that it had been caused by acidity and not by another bacterial/ viral infection which are the most common causes of a sore throat.
Acidity and Sore Throat: Correlation Between The Two
As the excessive acid produced in the stomach of people affected by GERD is forced back into the food pipe, it causes irritation in the vocal cords and might also be accompanied by symptoms like cracking voice and hoarseness. In most cases, these symptoms are seen as indications of a coming cold, totally oblivious of the fact that the acid being produced in the stomach is the main culprit.
Gastroenterologists have now confirmed that a large number of acidity affected people complain of a chronic sore throat and hoarseness, without realizing that it could have been caused by acidity.
Your bad throat or hoarseness therein might have been caused by acidity if:
- If the hoarseness or irritation in the throat occurs soon after taking a meal. Particularly after heavier meals.
- If you see this pattern repeating itself over a period of time.
- If you do not see any other symptoms which are usually related to a cold like wheezing, coughing, pain in the throat, sneezing and running nose even a few days after you develop a bad throat.
If the reflux is REALLY strong and the acid is expelled from the stomach with excessive force, it might even find its way into the lungs and cause respiratory disorders.
If you suspect that your respiratory problems have been caused by acidity or your doctor has reasons to believe so, you can rule out the possibility of the same by taking a pH test. This test helps measure the amount of acid present in the food pipe over a period of 24 hours and helps the diagnosing doctor know for sure if you are indeed suffering from acid reflux.
In extreme cases, acid reflux or expulsion of acid into the food pipe might even cause asthma, though that happens very rarely.
This is the general belief among doctors about the presence of a strong correlation between the two because a large number of asthma stricken patients have been known to be suffering from acidity as well. And the converse holds equally good too, which might be seen as an indicator to the presence of a relation between the two.
Though in most cases acidity does not cause other symptoms besides a little uneasiness and discomfort, a perpetually sore throat, chronic hoarseness could be indicative of the presence of acidity.
To rule out that possibility, talk to your doctor at length about the same and explain your problem fully to make out if indeed your bad throat is yet another outcome of your acidity and its resulting complications.