multivitamins and minerals



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What is the most important information I should know about multivitamins and minerals?

Never take more than the recommended dose of multivitamins and minerals. Avoid taking more than one vitamin/mineral product at the same time unless your doctor tells you to. Taking similar products together can result in a vitamin overdose or serious side effects.

Minerals taken in large doses can cause side effects such as tooth staining, increased urination, stomach bleeding, uneven heart rate, confusion, and muscle weakness or limp feeling. Read the label of any vitamin and mineral product you take to make sure you are aware of what it contains.

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. An overdose of vitamins A, D, E, or K can cause serious or life-threatening side effects if taken in large doses. Certain minerals may also cause serious overdose symptoms if you take too much.

Overdose symptoms may include stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, loss of appetite, hair loss, peeling skin, tingly feeling in or around your mouth, changes in menstrual periods, weight loss, severe headache, muscle or joint pain, severe back pain, blood in your urine, pale skin, and easy bruising or bleeding.

Do not take this medication with milk, other dairy products, calcium supplements, or antacids that contain calcium. Calcium may make it harder for your body to absorb certain ingredients of the multivitamin.

What is multivitamin?

Multivitamins and minerals are a combination of many different vitamins and minerals that are normally found in foods and other natural sources.

Multivitamins and minerals are used to provide vitamins and minerals that are not taken in through the diet. Multivitamins and minerals are also used to treat vitamin or mineral deficiencies caused by illness, pregnancy, poor nutrition, digestive disorders, certain medications, and many other conditions.

Multivitamins and minerals may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking multivitamins and minerals?

Many vitamin and mineral supplements can cause serious or life-threatening side effects if taken in large doses. Do not take more of this medication than directed on the label or prescribed by your doctor.

If you have any medical conditions, ask your doctor before taking multivitamins and minerals. If you have certain conditions, you may need a certain vitamin formulation or special tests while taking multivitamins and minerals.

Do not take multivitamins and minerals without telling your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Some vitamins can harm an unborn baby if taken in large doses. You may need to use a prenatal vitamin specially formulated for pregnant women.

Multivitamins and minerals can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take multivitamins and minerals?

Use this medication as directed on the label, or as your doctor has prescribed. Do not use the medication in larger amounts or for longer than recommended.

Never take more than the recommended dose of a vitamin and mineral supplement. Avoid taking more than one vitamin/mineral product at the same time unless your doctor tells you to. Taking similar products together can result in a vitamin or mineral overdose or serious side effects.

Minerals (especially taken in large doses) can cause side effects such as tooth staining, increased urination, stomach bleeding, uneven heart rate, confusion, and muscle weakness or limp feeling. Read the label of any vitamin and mineral product you take to make sure you are aware of what it contains.

Take your multivitamin and minerals with a full glass of water.

The chewable tablet must be chewed or allowed to dissolve in your mouth before swallowing. You may also allow the tablet to dissolve in drinking water, fruit juice, or infant formula (but not milk or other dairy products).

Measure the liquid form of multivitamins and minerals using a special dose-measuring spoon or cup, not a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist where you can get one.

Do not crush, chew, or break an extended-release tablet. Swallow the pill whole. It is specially made to release the vitamins and minerals slowly into the body.

It is important to take multivitamins and minerals regularly to get the most benefit.

Store this medication at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the liquid medicine from freezing.

Store multivitamins and minerals in their original container. Storing multivitamins and minerals in a glass container can ruin the medication.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at the next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. An overdose of vitamins A, D, E, or K can cause serious or life-threatening side effects. Certain minerals may also cause serious overdose symptoms if you take too much.

Vitamin overdose symptoms may include stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, loss of appetite, hair loss, peeling skin, tingly feeling in or around your mouth, changes in menstrual periods, weight loss, severe headache, muscle or joint pain, severe back pain, blood in your urine, pale skin, and easy bruising or bleeding.

Mineral overdose symptoms may include dry mouth, increased thirst or urination, severe nausea or stomach pain, constipation, vomiting, bloody diarrhea, black and tarry stools, coughing up blood, severe drowsiness, slow heart rate, shallow breathing, weak and rapid pulse, confusion, muscle weakness, warmth or tingly feeling, fainting, cold or clammy skin, blue lips, and seizure (convulsions).

What should I avoid while taking multivitamins and minerals?

Avoid taking more than one vitamin/mineral product at the same time unless your doctor tells you to. Taking similar vitamin products together can result in a vitamin overdose or serious side effects.

Avoid the regular use of salt substitutes in your diet if your multivitamin and mineral contains potassium. If you are on a low-salt diet, ask your doctor before taking a vitamin or mineral supplement.

Do not take this medication with milk, other dairy products, calcium supplements, or antacids that contain calcium. Calcium may make it harder for your body to absorb certain minerals.

What are the possible side effects of multivitamins and minerals?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

When taken as directed, multivitamins and minerals are not expected to cause serious side effects. Less serious side effects may include:

  • upset stomach
  • headache; or
  • unusual or unpleasant taste in your mouth.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect multivitamins and minerals?

Vitamin and mineral supplements can interact with certain medications, or affect how medications work in your body. Before taking a vitamin/mineral product, tell your doctor if you also use:

  • diuretics (water pills)
  • heart or blood pressure medications
  • tretinoin (Vesanoid)
  • isotretinoin (Accutane, Amnesteen, Clavaris, Sotret)
  • trimethoprim and sulfamethoxazole (Cotrim, Bactrim, Septra, TMP/SMX); or
  • an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug) such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), diclofenac (Cataflam, Voltaren), etodolac (Lodine), indomethacin (Indocin), ketoprofen (Orudis), and others.

This list is not complete and there may be other medications that can interact with or be affected by multivitamins and minerals. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about multivitamins and minerals.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.