Acidity and Alkalinity

One term that doctors throw around a lot when they talk about GERD is "pH". This is used to express the acidity or alkalinity of a solution according to a 14-point scale. Acidity starts at 1, on the lower end of the scale, and can be as high as 6.9. A neutral pH is 7.0. Alkalinity starts above 7.0 and ends at 14.0, the most alkaline.

Acid is not "bad" and alkaline is not good. We all need some acid in our stomachs to break down foods and kill bacteria, and acid blockers don't halt all production of acid forever. But when you have GERD, it's best if you can reach the ideal level of acidity in the esophagus.

Most gasroenterologists hope that their GERD patients will eventually have a pH of 4.0 in the esophagus. Levels lower than 4.0 can be very damaging to your esophagus when you have GERD

There are several aspects of the concept of pH that can be a little confusing for many people. A tricky part to keep in mind is that a lower pH is equal to more acid. When it comes to acidity, less is mmore.