Maalox is an antiacid designed for a quick relief of heartburn. It is taken orally and is available in a variety of forms- chewable tablets, oral suspensions and sachets.
Maalox originally contained magnesium hydroxide and aluminum hydroxide. But nowadays there is a great variety of formulations, differing on the amount and type of alkaline salts in them and the addition of simethicone (a drug used to treat bloating and trapped wind). There are different dose recommendations depending on the type of Maalox you are using.
Some of the most popular brands (by Novartis) are:
- Maalox Regular Strength (600mg calcium carbonate)
1 or 2 tablets of it should be taken when symptoms occur or 20 minutes to one hour after meals, at bedtime or as directed by a doctor. You should not take more than 12 tablets per day and you should not use it for more than 2 weeks.
- Maalox Advanced Regular Strength (200mg aluminum hydroxide, magnesium hydroxide and 20 mg simethicone)
The suspension must be shaken well before use. The recommended dose is 2-4 teaspoons four times a day, usually after meals and at bedtime. The maximum dose per day should not exceed 16 teaspoons. It should not be given to children under the age of 12 unless prescribed by a doctor.
- Maalox Advanced Maximum Strength liquid (400mg aluminum hydroxide, magnesium hydroxide and 40 mg simethicone)
As this is a higher dosed medicine, you should take 2-4 teaspoons two times a day. Do not exceed the maximum daily dose of 8 teaspoons. Do not give it to children under 12 years old without consulting a doctor.
- Maalox Advanced Maximum Strength tablets (calcium carbonate 1000mg, 60mg simethicone)
In case you prefer the tablets, the recommended dose for adults and children over 12 years old is 1-2 tablets four times a day or when symptoms occur. The maximum dose per day is 8 tablets.
- Maalox Total relief or “All In One” Maalox (bismuth subsalicylate) –this is an antidiarrheal agent, not an antiacid.
The recommended Maalox dosage for adults and children over 12 years old is 1 tablespoon of the suspension every hour till the symptoms persist but not longer than two days. Do not take more than 8 tablespoons per 24 hours.
Senior patents: No correction of the dose is needed.
Pediatric dose: Maalox Children's Relief (by Novartis) is available for children over the age of 2 years old. It contains 400mg of calcium carbonate.
Children 2 to 5 years old:
The recommended single dose is 1 tablet. The maximum dose per day is 3 tablets.
Children 6 to 11 years old:
The recommended single dose is 1-2 tablets. The maximum dose per day is 6 tablets.
Do not take Maalox (antiacid) for more than 14 days. If the symptoms persist, consult your doctor as they may be signs of more serious conditions. Do not take Maalox if you have kidney disease or you are on calcium or magnesium restricted diet.