Dizziness and Nausea After Magnesium Citrate

Passenger feeling dizzy in a train travel
Magnesium citrate can cause unpleasant side effects. (Image: AntonioGuillem/iStock/Getty Images)

Magnesium citrate is a medication doctors prescribe to treat constipation. It works by drawing water into your small intestines from your cells, which then causes the contents of your intestines to move through your digestive tract, leading to a bowel movement within a few hours. However, magnesium citrate can cause side effects, including dizziness and nausea, especially when taken in large amounts.

Nausea

Because magnesium citrate contains magnesium, it can increase your magnesium levels. If your blood magnesium levels rise too high, toxicity symptoms occur, including nausea. However, this doesn't often occur with the usual dosage prescribed for constipation.

Dizziness

Magnesium citrate can also cause dizziness in some cases, especially if your kidney function is impaired. Magnesium citrate can lower blood pressure, and if your blood pressure becomes too low it causes dizziness. If you already have very low blood pressure, you shouldn't take magnesium citrate because it could cause your blood pressure to become dangerously low.

Other Possible Side Effects

Long-term use of magnesium citrate can lead to dependency on this medication for normal bowel function. Other common side effects from taking this medication include stomach cramps, abdominal pain and bloating. Some people also experience diarrhea, which can cause you to become dehydrated or to develop an electrolyte imbalance. More serious side effects include blood in the stool, irregular heartbeat, allergic reaction, weakness and sweating.

Considerations

Speak with your doctor about all medications and supplements you take before taking magnesium citrate, since it can interfere with certain medications, and it is not safe for everyone. If you experience dizziness or nausea or any of the serious side effects listed above, speak with your doctor right away. You may need to change medications.

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