Magnesium Overdose is real, but is extremely rare - and for the vast majority of people, is never going to be an issue no matter how much magnesium you take. Magnesium is a water soluble mineral and the body readily excretes any excess in the urine, feces and sweat. And this is where the problem of magnesium toxicity lies.
Anyone with a problem of being unable to eliminate magnesium has the potential to overdose on this otherwise extremely safe substance. When this overdose on magnesium does occur, it is called by several different names, including:
any and all of these terms mean the same thing, with the term Hypermagnesemia specifically referring to high Magnesium Blood Levels.
This type of problem is almost exclusively in those with impaired kidney function or those who do not move their bowels, including:
Then you need to speak to your doctor before you start any magnesium therapy as there is an extremely high risk for you to have a Magnesium Overdose. This is ONLY a problem in those with impaired kidney FUNCTION and is not a problem for those withNORMAL FUNCTION but who get recurring kidney infections (which are usually BLADDER infections and not KIDNEY infections). Magnesium ingestion is also not a problem for those who get recurring kidney stones. In fact, those who are calcium oxalate kidney stone-formers can often benefit from the addition of magnesium supplements.
There are many symptoms of magnesium toxicity, most of which are non-specific and can mimic other health problems. Symptoms can start with simple nausea and weakness, then progressively worsen from that. Later, people can get any number of symptoms including neurologic problems like:
And cardiac problems such as:
If this continues, then it can finally lead to:
While magnesium administration is safe for most people, even people with normal kidney function HAVE overdosed on magnesium. Usually, these people had one or more of the risk factors for an overdose. You should be cautious about taking magnesium if you are already taking medications- particularly those that contain magnesium such as antacids or magnesium containing laxatives.
The elderly are at particular risk for many reasons. They can easily take an incorrect dosage, they are often taking other medications, they tend to have more kidney and bowel issues than others and tend to get more dehydrated more quickly- all of which are risk factors for magnesium toxicity.
So, you should be extra cautious for magnesium overdose symptoms particularly if you:
And while there are several Epsom Salt Uses, you should never swallow Epsom salts as a cleanse or use an Epsom salt solution in an enema. These situations have been the most common reasons for magnesium toxicity in people without kidney problems and should be avoided because of their high risk.
There are other reasons why magnesium should not be taken by certain people, even though there is no more risk of Magnesium Overdose than anyone else, there can be problems from taking magnesium.
Those with myasthenia gravis or other neuromuscular transmission disorders can get profound weakness and muscular problems after taking magnesium supplements- even though it is not because of magnesium toxicity. They should not take magnesium unless under the direction of their doctor.
Those with current Atrial Fibrillation have the possibility of 'converting' their atrial fibrillation into a normal rhythm by taking a high dosage of magnesium. While this may seem desirable, there is a high risk of having a blood clot ejected from the heart and into the general circulation. This could cause a life threatening condition of a heart attack, stroke or pulmonary embolism. If you have atrial fibrillation, your cardiologist should be directing your magnesium supplementation.
For the vast majority of the population, if you follow the guidelines above and know what your risk is- then Hypermagnesemia is extremely unlikely. In fact, the vast majority of people experience Magnesium Deficiency Symptoms and can benefit from additional magnesium. Know your risk of a Magnesium Overdose, know the symptoms of an overdose and carefully monitor your intake and you can enjoy the health benefits that increasing your magnesium intake can give you- while minimizing the risks. Keep reading to find out how to take a safe magnesium dosage.
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