Basics on How Acid Reflux Medication Works

You don't need a heavily scientific or chemical explanation of how all the various GERD medications work in your system, but it's good to have a basic understanding.

Antacid drugs work to neutralize the level of already existing acid in your stomach. These medications don't prevent stomach acid from backing up when you have GERD, but they make what does reflux up into your esophagus a lot less acidic than what backed up before you took the antacid. imagine a five-alarm fire, with fire trucks rushing forward to put out the flames. You, on the other hand, have a fire in your belly that is backing up into your esophagus. You douse your acidic "flames" with antacids.

Antacids are good for occasional bouts of heartburn, but they are not very good for healing esophagitis.

Some prescribed drugs, such as acid blockers, cut back on the production of acid in your stomach; in that sense, they go one step farther back than do the antacids. In fact, acid blockers prevent the fire in your stomach from happening in the first place. And by diminishing acid production, acid blockers give your esophagus a chance to heal from any erosion or damage that has occurred during your previous GERD episodes and that added to your pain. Thus, acid blockers are usually more effective than antacids for people who have GERD. Pepcid Complete is a unique formulation combining antacids plus an H2 blocker in a single chewable tablet.

There are two primary types of acid blockers, which I will discuss later in this blog: H2 blockers and PPIs. Of the two categories, PPIs are stronger.

Other drugs work on other functions, such as speeding up stomach emptying or improving the strength of the LES. They are called prokinetic drugs.