Very frustrated, reflux is running my life!

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New Member

Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 4/4/2012 12:34 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Everyone! I'm new to the GERD forums. I'm 30 and have had GERD since 2003 which seems to be getting worse every year. I've had Endoscopy done and doc said I have hiatal hernia. Because of my reflux, recently, I have developed anxiety, panic attacks, and a fear of being alone. Because of this, I had to quit my job and my being independent has disappeared. I always need someone to be with me so I do not panic or have anxiety attacks because of my reflux. So you see, my reflux seems to be taking over my life! I am feeling really angry, disappointed, frustrated, and sad. Been to a lot of docs and all they do is give me a different kind of med. I am now trying to see if acupuncture will help. I am tired of letting reflux run my life. Has anyone here successfully overcome their GERD? I do not know what else to do. Thanks so much!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 1604
   Posted 4/4/2012 1:02 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi there

GERD and anxiety do tend to feed off each other. I think you have to tackle the GERD as best you can - talk to your GP/PCP about your medication and whether surgery may be an option. You need to also tackle the anxiety issues separately so that they don't sabotage any progress you may be able to make with your GERD - perhaps you can ask about counselling, CBT or medications to deal with that too? Other members will be better able to respond about the anxiety issues.

GERD can have a big impact on our social lives, which creates a new issue to deal with. Getting the right treatment involves tests and hospital appointments, which can add to the anxiety side of things.

Have you discussed surgical options with a specialist?

Many people are able to manage their GERD with medication or with surgery - a lot of the people using the forum are having surgery or recovering from surgery, have problems with the medication (such as side effects) or have symptoms which don't respond well to the usual treatment. Try to remember that there are lots of people out there who are doing very well on medication - they just aren't here on the forum!

Keep pestering your GP/PCP about your symptoms. Have you looked at the anxiety forum on Healingwell?

Hope things turn around for you soon,

New stuff: GERD, Recurrent cystitis/Overactive bladder
Lifelong stuff: Food allergies/intolerance, eczema, asthma

New Member

Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 18
   Posted 4/4/2012 2:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Sarsi,

Can you please describe your GERD symptoms? There are many things that people call GERD, but depending on the specific symptoms you have, there may be some good suggestions that people here on the forum can provide.

I know I was having terrible anxiety related to my "Volume Reflux" GERD symptoms. I did not have acid-reflux, because I was on a lot of PPIs, but that didn't stop the reflux from making from my stomach, into my throat and then into my lungs. I found several techniques to manage those symptoms very well, and that allowed me to find more permanent solutions (surgery).

Please provide some more info, and you might get better help :)

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 1110
   Posted 4/5/2012 9:57 AM (GMT -6)   
I have heard accupuncture and a chiropractor may help, I have not been to one yet. This is a very frustrating concition and it is definetly aggravated by anxiety and stress. I am getting married in a few weeks and my GERD has gone crazy. A suggestion is to only eat organic food (preservatives contain acid) and look up the Alkaline Diet. The diet is basically non-acidic fruits, vegetables, plain chicken, granola is ok for me, almonds, and a lot of water. Stay away from anything acidic. I believe that the longer I stay on this diet, I may be able to manage this without medication but it wikll take time. It is not a fun way to eat but it has helped me. Also try chewing gum, you saliva is akaline and may help. What else may help is breathing exercise to help your anxiety (I am a therapist and I use this and teach my clients with anxiety this) Breathe in for 4 seconds, breathe out for 4 seconds and then don't do anything for 4 seconds. Repeat the cycle. If you change the way you breathe you may decrease your anxiety. You may want to also look into meditation, although you have to get used to it. Instead of allowing GERD to take over you life you have to be proactive. I am on my second GI doctor next week (one of the best in my city) and I am hoping for some additional answers. If you are not happy with the doctors, keep looking or look into an Alternative Medicine Doctor.

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 178
   Posted 5/1/2012 7:05 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Sarah, like i mentioned in the other thread, aniexty/stress/worrying leads to stomach/spleen/kidney problems. Once you become tensed up, your stomach will go into a knot.. So, try to relax.. Your condition is not life threatening, you are giving too much pressure on yourself. Once you relax, you will feel better and naturally you will be fine.

Anxiety is caused by - thinking too much of the negative.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 5/1/2012 9:50 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello again.  I believe you have had problems with anxiety and depression in the past.  Wondering if you ever followed up with therapy or CBT ? CBT does work well in helping people identify what makes them anxious/depressed and then teaches you techniques which can help to keep your anxiety at a manageable level. Therapy combined with medication works well but the medication only helps with the symptoms it is up to the individual to work towards recovery which can be a long process. Keep us posted we are here to support you.
Life is full of challenges. Sometimes situations are beyond our contro, and sometimes we create challenges by our own hands.  It isn't always easy to face them alone. Sometimes we just need somebody to understand us.  Sometimes we just need a friend. 
You are not alone - we are here for you.
Big breath and know we understand how you are feeling.


Moderator: Anxiety, Osteoarthritis,
GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.

"Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass...
It's about learning how to dance in the rain."~ Vivian Greene
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