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Alka seltzer contains a combination of aspirin, citric acid, and sodium bicarbonate (baking soda). The aspirin works to relieve headaches and muscle pain. The last two ingredients, citric acid and sodium bicarbonate, are simply a mixture of a weak acid and a weak base (when you add alka seltzer to water, the fizzing is the reaction of the two with each other). When you have a weak acid and a weak base, the result is a buffer solution, which works to stabilize the pH.

Aspirin (Acetylsalicylic acid) is also a weak acid which would be water soluble. However, in drinking water it will dissolve slowly. Adding a weak base (sodium bicarbonate) would help force the aspirin into it's conjugate base form, increasing the polarity, and thus increase solubility.

Other WikiAnswers pages indicate a pH of 9.2, a basic solution which is probably to increase the solubility of the Aspirin, as well as both buffering the effects of Aspirin's acidity on the stomach lining, as well as working as an antacid to buffer the stomach acid.

One notes, of course, that Sodium Bicarbonate (NaHCO3) dissociates in water (with the help of acetic acid) into Na+ OH- CO2, I.E. Sodium Hydroxide, a base, and Carbon Dioxide which would be the direct cause of the fizzing effect.

See the Web Links and Related Questions to the left for more information.

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โˆ™ 2010-11-11 03:59:03
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Q: What are the active ingredients in alka seltzer?
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Related questions

Are all the ingreidents in alka seltzer?

If it seems to work as it should I would say that all the ingredients are in alka seltzer.


Why does alka-seltzer help an upset stomach feel better?

Alka-Seltzer includes aspirin and sodium bicarbonate in its ingredients. A stomach feels upset due to acid. Alka-Seltzer works as a base to neutralize the acid.


What are the ingrediance in Alka-seltzer?

Aspirin and sodium bicarbonate are the ingredients in Alka Seltzer. Two tablets are the equivalent of two regular aspirin and baking soda, which is an acid reducer in itself. But the sodium bicarbonate in alka seltzer is heat treated.


Why does alka seltzer bubble in the water?

Alka seltzer has sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and citric acid in its ingredients. when the alka seltzer hits the water, the baking soda and citric acid react, forming the CO2 bubbles that rise to the surface.


What are the ingredients in alka seltzer?

Aspirin, Citric Acid and Sodium Bicarbonate (NaHCO3)


Chemical formula for alka-seltzer?

There is no chemical formula for alka-selzer, as it is a mixture of multiple compounds. The active ingredients in it are sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3), citric acid (C6H8O7), and sometimes potassium bicarbonate (KHCO3).


What ingredients are both in alka seltzer and Tylenol?

aspririn and citric acid and sodium bicarbonate


What is the effect of acidity on Alka-Seltzer tablets?

Alka-Seltzer is an antacid.


Why is Alka-Seltzer no longer sold in the Philippines?

The people in the Philippines believe that Alka-Seltzer is not a medicine and that Alka-Seltzer should not be considered a medicine


What is an alka-seltzer?

Alka-seltzer is a white tablet that is used for when your stomch is upset.


What is the pH of alka seltzer water?

Alka-seltzer water has a pH of about 9


Who is the inventor of alka seltzer?

Jackson McKinsey was the inventor of alka-seltzer in 1931.

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