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How to Tell if You Have GERD and Manage it Better

December 15, 2023

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If you’ve never heard of GERD, you either do not suffer from it or have no idea that you have it! GERD stands for gastroesophageal reflux disease and it can impact anyone but especially the elderly generation. If you are caring for your mom or dad and wonder if they are suffering from GERD, you should encourage them to go to the doctor to understand if they have this issue and how they can fix it.

Here are some things your loved one can do if you think they are suffering from GERD:

See a Doctor

One of the very first steps to getting help when managing this condition is understanding if you or a senior loved one have this issue and then what you can do to manage it. The doctor can create a list of steps for the senior to do or even how home care can help manage this condition. They may need to change their diet or focus on new ways to eat to manage this condition.

Here are a few signs of GERD in a senior:

  • Regurgitation
  • Nausea
  • Burping up food
  • Repeatedly clearing throat 

Some seniors may experience something like a sour taste in their mouths or not be able to eat certain textured foods. If your loved one has not been able to keep down any food, it’s time to take them to the doctor. Once you figure out what food is the best for your loved one, ensure that home care has those foods stocked up for your loved one to eat.

Keep a Food Journal

Your senior may not be noticing, but sometimes certain foods can trigger GERD into happening. Home care can help your loved one write down what they are eating and what their response is to those foods. If one food always causes issues, home care can help a senior avoid those specific foods. Unfortunately, this requires a lot of experimentation and observation from home care, but it can be helpful in the future. Narrowing down foods to eat and avoid will be a huge part of aging in place while battling GERD.

Avoid Laying Down After Eating

A senior may like to eat lunch and then immediately take a nap. However, this is not always the best thing to do when digesting food. If your loved one wants a nap, encourage them to sit up for a little while after they eat or sleep with their heads lifted at an angle. Lying straight down after eating can cause the food they just ate to come back up much easier. Avoiding a nap after eating is best, but sometimes a nap is much needed!

Don’t Eat Too Fast

One of the easiest ways to have a GERD flareup is by eating too fast and too much. Your senior should chew their food thoroughly and for several seconds to a minute before swallowing. This allows their bodies to start digesting it and making it easier to swallow. When things are easier to swallow, they are less likely to come back up, and it will be less painful to eat.

If you or your loved one is looking for Home Care in Los Gatos, CA, please call Familiar Surroundings Home Care.

Santa Clara County: (408) 979-9990 

San Mateo County: (650) 353-9777

Santa Cruz County: (831) 480-3990



Tags:Home CareHome Care in Los Gatos CA