Gastric acid is a digestive fluid, formed in the stomach. It has a pH of 1 to 2 and is composed of hydrochloric acid , and large quantities of potassium chloride and sodium chloride...
Antacids perform a neutralization reaction, increasing the pH
In chemistry, pH is a measure of the acidity or basicity of an aqueous solution. Pure water is said to be neutral, with a pH close to 7.0 at . Solutions with a pH less than 7 are said to be acidic and solutions with a pH greater than 7 are basic or alkaline...
to reduce acidity in the stomach. When gastric hydrochloric acid
Hydrochloric acid is a solution of hydrogen chloride in water, that is a highly corrosive, strong mineral acid with many industrial uses. It is found naturally in gastric acid....
reaches the nerves in the gastrointestinal mucosa, they signal pain
Nociception is defined as "the neural processes of encoding and processing noxious stimuli." It is the afferent activity produced in the peripheral and central nervous system by stimuli that have the potential to damage tissue...
to the central nervous system. This happens when these nerves are exposed.
Antacids are taken by mouth to relieve heartburn
Heartburn, also known as pyrosis or acid indigestion is a burning sensation in the chest, just behind the breastbone or in the epigastrium...
, the major symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease
Gastroesophageal reflux disease
Gastroesophageal reflux disease , gastro-oesophageal reflux disease , gastric reflux disease, or acid reflux disease is chronic symptoms or mucosal damage caused by stomach acid coming up from the stomach into the esophagus...
, or acid indigestion.