Can I get sick from eating expired tums? 

In this brief guide, we’ll address the search query: “Can I get sick from eating expired tums?” Also, we’ll explore what tums are, what tums are used for, what are the contraindications for using tums, and what substitutes there are for tums. 

Can I get sick from eating expired tums? 

It’s unlikely for an individual to become sick from consuming expired TUMS. This is because when expired, calcium carbonate, the active ingredient in TUMS, may not be as effective in addressing the symptoms it is indicated for, but it may not necessarily cause sickness. 

However, if a patient with a condition for which TUMS are contraindicated, ingests expired tablets, they may experience symptoms and noxious effects. 

Explicitly, the manufacturer does not recommend consuming TUMS past the expiration date, as they can no longer guarantee the efficacy of their product. 

What are tums? 

Tums are calcium carbonate tablets that are sold over-the-counter, as a treatment for heartburn, upset stomach, acid indigestion, and other symptoms that may be associated with acid reflux. 

The calcium carbonate in the tablets acts by raising the pH of the secreted stomach acids and by counteracting the acidity, helps provide relief from the discomforting symptoms. 

Tums are manufactured by GSK – GlaxoSmithKline, a British pharmaceuticals company, though they’ve been sold in the USA for just over 90 years. They were first available to the public in 1930 and were distributed as a means to relieve symptoms of heartburn. 

What are tums used for? 

Tums are indicated for the treatment of heartburn, acid stomach,  acid reflux, and other discomforts caused by high acidity in the stomach. 

Calcium carbonate, the active ingredient in TUMS, helps neutralize the acids in the stomach, which may have begun to push their way up along the end of the esophagus. By raising the pH of these acids, TUMS can help relieve the discomfort that sets off pain in the nerves and may impair an individual’s activities. 

The carbonate reacts with the protons in the stomach acids and together they produce water – a substance of neutral pH that can help stabilize the excessive acidity in the stomach. 

TUMS tablets are chewable, and they begin to take effect within seconds of being ingested. 

What are the contraindications for using tums? 

Calcium carbonate- the active ingredient in TUMS– should not be administered to patients with:

  • a predisposition to form kidney stones,
  • those who have high levels of calcium in their urine,
  • those with high levels of calcium serum,
  • those with low phosphate serum levels,
  • those with achlorhydria (a condition in which patients don’t secrete stomach acids)
  • and patients with digoxin (medication to treat irregular heart rates) toxicity 

Additionally, flavored calcium carbonate tablets may be contraindicated for those with allergies or other sensitivities to the ingredients in the formula. 

We recommend that our readers consult with a general practitioner to determine whether or not calcium carbonate tablets are right for their symptoms. 

What substitutes are there for tums? 

There are various substitutes for tums. Some may be over-the-counter medications, while others may require a medical prescription for purchasing. 

Other over-the-counter medications, indicated for the treatment of heartburn and associated symptoms include: 

  • Alka Seltzer ® – manufactured by Bayer pharmaceuticals, these tablets are effervescent – ideal for dissolving in water. They’re made of sodium bicarbonate (which, like calcium carbonate, neutralizes acids) and acetylsalicylic acid.
  • Rolaids ® – these chewable calcium carbonate tablets also contain magnesium hydroxide, which can also help quicken the effect of neutralizing stomach acids and provide lasting relief, while the symptoms abate.
  • Pepto-Bismol ® – the active ingredient, Bismuth Subsalicylate, is indicated for the treatment of various symptoms of indigestion, including heartburn, acid reflux, acid stomach, diarrhea, flatulence, and noises.

Unlike the other products mentioned above, it acts by regulating the fluids and ions through the intestine, helps reduce swelling, and in some cases, can have antimicrobial effects.

Prescription medications may include protein pump inhibitors, prescription-grade antiacids, and medications with analgesics. 

We recommend that our readers have whichever one of these products best suits their needs as part of their home medicine kit, and if they have any doubts regarding which medication best suits their needs, we encourage them to seek professional medical orientation.  

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we’ve addressed the search query: “Can I get sick from eating expired tums?” Also, we’ll explore what tums are, what tums are used for, what are the contraindications for using tums, and what substitutes there are for tums. 

References

https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a607040.html
https://www.drugs.com/mtm_esp/rolaids-extra-strength.html
https://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-579-2123/calcium-carbonate-oral/calcium-carbonate-antacid-oral/details
https://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-579-2123/calcium-carbonate-oral/calcium-carbonate-antacid-oral/details
https://www.tums.com/about/
https://www.tums.com/faqs/
https://www.insider.com/does-medicine-expire-2019-2#:~:text=%22Most%20times%20it%20wouldn’t,medication%20melt%2C%22%20he%20said.
https://www.healthline.com/health/antacids

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