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Health Tip: Don't Depend on Antacids

Overuse can lead to health problems

(HealthDayNews) -- Occasional use of antacids is fine, but taking them too often for too long may cause serious health problems.

Antacids may contain calcium, magnesium or aluminum. In large doses, each of these ingredients can cause potentially harmful side effects, warns Dr. Robert Rude, a professor of medicine at the University of Southern California.

Antacids that contain calcium can cause kidney stones if they're taken in high doses for months or years. Antacids that contain magnesium can cause diarrhea if they're taken too often, and they're especially dangerous for people with kidney disease. In these people, too much magnesium can result in low blood pressure, breathing problems and even death.

Taking too many antacids that contain aluminum can results in a disease that causes bones to become brittle and painful.

People who continually need to take antacids should see a doctor, Rude advises.

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