The 3 most important things to know if you have Acidity issues, either Decay or Tooth Erosion or Reflux: How to choose a Medical/Dental provider, What to change in your diet, and How to protect your oral cavity and upper digestive tract.
It has long been believed that Acid Reflux patients should see a Gastroenterologist, have an upper GI Endoscopy, begin taking medications, and schedule follow up Endoscopies. I no longer believe that this is the correct path. Now that studies have shown that almost 50% of our population, across all age groups, are experiencing acid reflux and half of that group have NO symptoms and no awareness that they have this problem more trained Medical/Dental professionals need to be involved. As Dentists begin to learn about the problem and how to diagnose Acidity problems they will be at the leading edge of early detection. We currently have Fellowship trained Laryngologists that are the most active and accurate in dealing with these problems. There are some Pulmonologists that are good at diagnosing Reflux when it involves symptoms that mimic asthma. So what do you look for: a Dentist that is well versed in CAMBRA and uses ATP Bioluminescence may have the proper training, A laryngologist that uses TNE instead of Endoscopy and uses pH monitoring devices, and MDs that work hard at helping you to get off pharmaceutical use and initiate serious dietary discussions with you. It is inadvisable to rely on pharmaceutical use as the treatment long term, 1 year being the limit.
So what can you do to help yourself: Eliminate sodas, energy drinks, fried foods, high fat meals, and never eat until you are completely stuffed. Avoid all prepackaged foods because of their acidity and try to enjoy fresh foods instead. Never eat within 4 hours of lying down to sleep. You must have heard all of this before.!
Finally, if you know you have reflux while you sleep begin your day with a 4oz glass of Alkaline water of pH 9.0 or above. This will help to neutralize the damage to your esophagus caused by the reflux as well as help neutralize your oral biofilm. If you are the studious type there is a great read by Jamie Koufman, MD as well as a dozen YouTube videos. Dr. Koufman is truly the premier expert on Acid Reflux and has written: ‘Dropping Acid: The reflux Diet’. If your issues are more dental with decay read ‘ Balance’ by V. Kim Kutsch, DMD.
To good health!