Doctors prescribe Dexilant to treat acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease, according to WebMD. The medication reduces the amount of acid the stomach produces. It is also useful in treating ulcers.
Acid reflux causes several symptoms, including heartburn, a persistent cough and difficulty swallowing, explains WebMD. Reducing the production of stomach acid gives the esophagus or stomach a chance to heal. The medication has the potential to prevent esophageal cancer.
Many people experience heartburn occasionally; however, a person who experiences heartburn two or more times weekly or has visible damage to the esophagus may have GERD, according to Mayo Clinic. If a person cannot manage GERD with lifestyle changes, his doctor may prescribe medication to control the acid levels. As of 2014, Dexilant is only available by prescription in the United States. In some cases, GERD requires surgery.
Lifestyle changes also help to reduce the symptoms of GERD, notes Mayo Clinic. Overweight individuals benefit from losing weight. Reducing the size of the meal and avoiding tight-fitting clothes helps to reduce the pressure on the stomach that sometimes forces the contents to reflux into the esophagus. As of 2014, there are no proven alternative treatments to reduce the effects of GERD; however, acupuncture, herbal remedies and relaxation techniques, when combined with a doctor's care, sometimes helps to relieve symptoms.