What is Lansoprazole?
Lansoprazole is a medication used to treat acid reflux. Acid reflux is an uncomfortable condition in which stomach acid escapes from the stomach into the oesophagus (food pipe). The acid causes irritation and damage to the oesophagus, which can cause heartburn and pain. You may also experience an acidic taste at the back of your throat when acid reflux occurs.
Lansoprazole is a highly effective method for the treatment of acid reflux. It belongs to a drug class known as proton pump inhibitors or PPIs. These work by interfering with the production of stomach acid and reducing the amount of stomach acid that is produced.
Can you buy Lansoprazole over the counter in the UK?
Lansoprazole is not available over the counter in the UK, it is only available on prescription. Lansoprazole is quite a strong medication, so it is recommended that you try over the counter options first. If you have tried over the counter acid reflux treatments, but they have not been effective, you can ask for a Lansoprazole prescription from your GP or an online pharmacy such as Dr Felix.
There are a number of different treatment options available for acid reflux, including both prescription and over the counter drugs, as well as various lifestyle changes, that may help to get rid of your acid reflux altogether.
Antacids, such as Rennies, are available over the counter. They help to reduce acid reflux, by neutralising the stomach acid. This means that if stomach acid does leak into the oesophagus, it should cause less irritation and damage.
Another type of over the counter treatment is known as alginates. Alginates, such as Gaviscon, work by forming a gel-like raft that floats on top of the gastric acid. This helps to form a protective barrier between the acid and the oesophagus, preventing the acid from entering the oesophagus in the first place.
PPIs and H2 antagonists are generally available on prescription only, but low doses of some of these medications (Omeprazole, Esomeprazole and Ranitidine) are now available over the counter. For higher doses of these drugs, or for other types of PPI, such as Pantoprazole and Lansoprazole, a prescription is required. Both PPIs and H2 antagonists work by interfering with certain receptors on cells in the stomach, which reduces the amount of gastric acid produced.
All these medications only treat the symptoms of acid reflux, they are not curative. However, there are a number of lifestyle changes you can make that may help to prevent acid reflux. These include:
- Stopping smoking
- Losing weight
- Avoiding alcohol or reducing alcohol intake
- Avoid eating late at night or lying down shortly after a meal
- Avoid eating large meals