In the less severe cases of esophagitis, also known as gastro esophageal reflux disease, there are certain lifestyle changes that can effectively be used to bring the condition completely under control. In the case where the patient is overweight, losing some weight is highly recommended. This is because excess weight leads to increased pressure inside the belly which in turn causes more stomach acid reflux thus exacerbating the symptoms. In order to control esophagitis, one will also be required to avoid foods that are known to worsen the condition. Some of these foods are onions, garlic, fatty and greasy foods, chocolate, peppermint citrus fruits, tomato products and spicy foods. Some categories of these foods slow down the gastric emptying process while others increase the stomach acid concentration, all of which occasion reflux. In order to prevent or control esophagitis, one also has to avoid the use of alcohol and cigarettes, limit the use of caffeine, staying upright immediately after eating and elevation of the upper body side of the bed a little bit while sleeping.
In some instances, putting the recommended esophagitis management related lifestyle changes into practice may be difficult such as in cases where drug abuse or addictions are involved. There may also be implementation challenges in situations where excess weight is in combination with old age such that physical exercise as a way of weight loss is rendered impossible. Definitely, drug or alcohol addiction will require rehabilitation while surgical methods can be evaluated as options if the patient cannot lose weight by other means. Selecting lifestyle change or prescription medication for esophagitis condition will depend on the severity of the condition. Lifestyle change is the best alternative in situations where it alone is adequate to completely manage esophagitis. On the other hand, it would be best to go for both lifestyle change and medication when the condition is more severe.
Goroll, A. H., & Mulley, A. G. (2009). Primary care medicine: Office evaluation and management of the adult patient. (6th ed.). Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Meisler, J. G. (2004). Toward optimal health: The experts discuss gastrointestinal dysfunction. Journal of Women's Health, 12(1), 11-16.
Zelman, M., Tompary, E., Raymond, J., Holdaway, P., & Mulvihill, M. L. (2010). Human diseases: A systemic approach. (7th ed.). New Jersey: Prentice Hall.