Gaviscon is a reflux suppressant and its active ingredient is sodium alginate + bicarbonate. It relieves symptoms such as heartburn or burning due to reflux. It reduces stomach complaints that occur after meals and during pregnancy. It prevents acid indigestion and gastric fluid coming up into the mouth. It is also used to treat inflammation of esophagus. It is usually prescribed to be used for a short period of time, depending on the frequency and intensity of complaints. In occasional conditions, it can only be used as symptoms appear. For symptoms with increasing intensity and frequency, a seven-day treatment can be administered. If complaints are not relieved during this period, the doctor should be informed. It is a safe medicine and its side effects are limited. But it should not be used without medical advice.
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Gaviscon is a prescription medicine used to treat gastroesophageal reflux. Sodium alginate, sodium bicarbonate, and calcium carbonate, which are the main active ingredients, have the effect of reducing and controlling the acid rate in the stomach. There are syrup and chewable tablet forms with flavour of mint. The syrup form is usually administered to children and pregnant-breastfeeding women. However, adults can also use this form if they prefer. The medicine should be taken for a short time under the supervision of a doctor. (1)
Gaviscon is mainly used for relieving the complaints especially due to the following conditions: (2)
What is Gastritis? Causes, symptoms, treatment and natural healing
The symptoms of the conditions that appear especially after meals are as follows:
Gaviscon is a combined medicine with three active ingredients. Sodium alginate, sodium bicarbonate (natural salts), and calcium carbonate act together to treat stomach complaints induced by reflux. Its mechanism of action works as follows, they; (1)
Thus, symptoms of acid reflux, such as heartburn, are relieved. It not only relieves the symptoms of inflammation of esophagus, but also helps heal the inflamed esophagus by protecting from the acid.
As soon as the medicine is taken, it starts to show its effect. The effect of a dose can last about 4 hours.
What is indigestion (dyspepsia)? Symptoms, Causes and Treatments
Dose amount to be taken is prescribed by the doctor according to the general health of the patient and the intensity of the symptoms. It’s best to take it after meals and at bedtime. It can be taken up to 4 times a day. The daily dose adjustment is usually as follows:
Dose adjustment is not required for both forms for the elderly. In patients with renal failure, a special dose adjustment is required due to sodium and calcium content in the medicine.
This medicine does not have any serious side effects due to overdose. If taken too much by accident, it may cause a temporary bloating in the stomach-abdominal area. This does not cause any health hazards. If you are worried, you can consult your doctor.
Gaviscon is one of the medicines used for a short-term treatment. Depending on the condition for taking the medicine, it can only be taken with the onset of complaints. In frequent symptoms, it can be used regularly for 7 consecutive days. If symptoms do not relieve or they get worse, the patient needs to be re-examined by the doctor. Continuous use of the medicine can suppress an underlying condition. Therefore, doctor can continue treatment with this medicine intermittently as needed.
Gaviscon should not be taken with other medicines at the same time. The medicines can interfere with each other and it may change the level of effect. Other medicines should be taken 2 hours after Gaviscon intake. (3)
Particular attention should be paid to the following medications:
In order to regulate the time of medicine intake, inform your doctor about all prescription or over-the-counter medications you use.
Inform your doctor before using ibuprofen or aspirin with this medicine at the same time. Taking these painkillers with Gaviscon may further worsen the stomach symptoms. It’s safe to take it with paracetamol.
Gaviscon does not interact with alcohol and cause side effects. But it can adversely affect the healing activity of the medicine. Alcohol makes the stomach produce more acid than normal. This can irritate the stomach lining and make symptoms worse. Therefore, it is not recommended to use alcohol during Gaviscon treatment.
The medicine should not be taken at the same time with acid-containing foods, especially like orange juice. An interval of two hours is needed to consume this kind of food and drink. Especially patients with intensive symptoms should stick to the diet recommended by the doctor and avoid high-acid foods. Thus, the medicine will be more effective in the treatment process.
Gaviscon Double Action:
Gaviscon Infant – 30 sachets
Gaviscon is a very safe medicine in general. However;
The two forms of the medicine contain different inactive ingredients. For example, aspartame is one of the inactive ingredients of the tablet form. It should not be used by those with phenylketonuria (a rare hereditary children disease). Check the inactive ingredients of the form you are taking from the patient leaflet.
Those who have the following health conditions should take this medicine with caution:
Children under 12 years old can take the medicine only if the doctor considers it necessary.
Gaviscon can be used safely during pregnancy and breastfeeding with the prescription of the doctor and in accordance with the instructions. Becoming pregnant while taking the medicine does not cause any health problem. Nevertheless, you should inform your doctor about all medicines taken during pregnancy. (4,5)
What causes constipation? Treatment with medication and suppository
The ingredients in Gaviscon may cause allergic reaction even if they are rare. If any of the following symptoms occur, stop taking the medicine and in immediately apply to an emergency service.
Resources and References:1- Gaviscon (alginic acid)2- Gaviscon Peppermint Liquid Relief3- Taking antacids
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