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Hey, Look My Antacid: Musings in the Lab

Abdullah Ashraf ID #853196 Instructor: Dao Tran
Introduction: Antacids, are bases used to counteract the acidity of the
stomach acids, are taken to relieve the acidity in the stomach or
esophagus. When acids in the stomach reach nerves in the
gastrointestinal lining of the stomach or esophagus, pain is signaled to
the nervous system. Being a base, the antacid carries out a
neutralization reaction with the acids in the stomach to increase the pH
level, reduce acidity, and stop the pain.

Purpose: In this lab, three different brands of antacids were

experimented with, and the time that each takes to neutralize the
acidity of the given HCl.

Hypothesis: It was assumed, based on the price that Philips is the most
expeditious, since usually expensive products are the ones sparing best
of the results.


• 5 drops of Phillips, Milk of Magnesia (Mint flavored) and Life

Brand antacids each (separately experimented on of course.)

• Safety goggles

• a couple beakers (50 ml & 140ml)

• Stirring rod

• Plastic pipette

• Antacids
• hydrochloric acid (HCL)

• Phenolphthalein (liquid indicator)

• Ph paper (paper indicator)


a) Independent variable: The types of antacid.

b) Dependent variable: Drops of HCl concentrated to achieve the

compensation point.

c) Control variables: Size of pipette, beaker, pressure applied etc…

Procedure: 140 ml of beaker was filled with tap water 5 drops of each
product were put into a beaker using pipette and one drop of
phenolphthalein in each.. And drops of HCl poured for each material
unless they turn transparent, signifying they are taking affect.

Qualitative Quantitative
st nd
Description 1 2 3rd Avera Ranking
trial trial trial ge
The solution turned pink
when the
Phillips phenolphthalein was 24 27 24 25 2nd
added. Adding 13 drops drops drops drops drops
into the solution turned
it cloudy and continued
turning it slowly into
pink. At 25 drops, the
solution turned

Milk of The antacid turned pink 20 22 22 22 3rd

when the
Magnesi phenolphthalein was drops drops drops drops
a (mint added. At 11 drops of
flavor) HCl added, the solution
formed clouds and
again started turning
into pink. The solution
went transparent at 22
Life Turned pink when 27 30 30 29 1st
phenolphthalein was
Brand added. At 15 drops the drops drops drops drops
solution went cloudy
and started showing
light pink. At 29 drops
of HCl, the solution
went transparent.
Antacid Brand # of drops Initial pH paper # of HCl drops Final pH color and
of Antacid color and pH needed until pH reading
reading solution turns
Phillips 5 7.5 and dark green 25 6 and light green
Life Brand 5 8 and dark green 29 7 and green
Milk of 5 8 and dark green 21.3 7 and green
Magnesia (mint

Results: Life Brand turned pink at one drop of phenolphthalein. The

pink color was observed to be fading away at one drop of HCl, slowly
progressing to cloudiness at 14 drops of HCl, gradually turning into light
pink and finally, the solution went transparent at 25 drops.

Moving onto the next product, Phillips turned pink when one drop of
phenolphthalein was first added, pink color began to fade away at one
drop of HCl and the solution turning cloudy at 13 drops of and gradually
turning loght pink, progressing to transparency at 25 drops.

Finally, Milk of magnesia (mint flavor) was experimented on, which

turned pink when phenolphthalein was added. Yet again, pink color
started to show up at one drop of HCl turning the solution cloudy on 11
drops of HCl, moving to light pink eventually, yet once more. Turning
transparent at 22 drops.


Life Brand has the most effectiveness of the three antacids, since the
quality in this experiment is dependent on the volume of HCl needed
to neutralize the antacid not the price of it. Therefore, the hypothesis
is rejected.
Error Analysis: Errors in this experiment to be pointed out are more
than a couple, first being that the pipette didn’t have any form of
measurement whatsoever, thus the drops off the pipette couldn’t be as
accurate as they were completely dependent to the pressure applied by
the user, one way to fix this problem would be to measure all the
solutions as needed in well measured test tubes, away from other
classmates, to be only utilized for your team’s experiment, which brings
to my next point, same pipettes and flask being used over again by
various kids in class could have affected the accuracy of results since
some chemicals may not be completely soluble and may sometimes be
sticky, such as magnesium hydroxide. Water alone may not be able to
remove all the magnesium hydroxide left from different trials or
brands, thus wiser to use different materials for each antacid
implementation. Another error to point out is me, and my experiment
and real life mate Mohamed Elgobashy deciding to cut the pipette off
the top for our experiment as a cause of lack of patience and deficiency
of enough time for the experiment, solution to this would be to
implement the experiment at a time only set to do the experiment, not
in class and to be patient with the slow progress.

Application: The experiment results reveal that Life Brand is the most
effective antacid in treating excess acidity in the alimentary canal,
meaning that Life Brand would be the best in treating cases of acidity in
the fastest time possible in comparison to other antacids experimented
on. It is important to be able to fix acidity as quick as possible for the
patient as It may limit their full potential as a person, thus limiting their
contribution the world.
Discussion Questions:

1. Based on your observations, explain why some times when you

drop HCl into the antacid solution, the base briefly turns clear but
then becomes pink again.

An indicator changes its color as result of its reaction to the solution it

was concentrated into. Since magnesium hydroxide is partially soluble,
it needs time to react with phenolphthalein and produce the color
needed to indicate its pH level. Phenolphthalein reacts with magnesium
hydroxide to produce a pink colored solution, the color fades away to
transparency. However it turns opaque back again slowly because at
this point the reaction between phenolphthalein and magnesium
hydroxide is complete.

2. Calculate the number of drops of HCl per drop of each antacid

Life brand:

29 drops of hydrochloric acid and 5 drops of antacid

29/5= 5.8 drops HCl/ drops antacid


25 drops of hydrochloric acid and 5 drops of antacid

25/5= 5 drops HCl/ drops antacid

Milk of Magnesia (mint flavor):

21.3 drops of hydrochloric acid and 5 drops of antacid

21.3/5= 4.26 drops HCl/ drops antacid

3. Draw a graph comparing the number of HCl drops applied to
antacids for neutralization.

Number of Drops - HCl vs Antacid


Number of drops of HCl



4 Philips
Number of drops of antacid
Philips Life Brand Milk of Magnesia (mint flavour)

4. Based on your results, what was the most effective antacid? Explain
your reasoning. Indicate the active ingredient in this antacid and write
a balanced chemical equation to show the reaction between your
active ingredient and the hydrochloric acid (HCl) in your stomach.

Based on the results obtained from this experiment, the most effective
antacid is Life Brand antacid out of the 3 antacids. Life Brand turned
neutral at 29 drops, which is more than the two other brands. Phillips
required 25 and Milk of Magnesia (mint flavour), 21.3 drops to become

The active ingredient in this antacid is magnesium hydroxide Mg(OH)2.

The balanced chemical equation is:

Mg(OH)2 + 2HCl  MgCl2 + 2H2O

5. In a normal human body, we add BASE (an antacid) to an ACID (our
stomach) to prevent heartburn. In this lab, we added ACID to the
BASE. Was this a realistic way to carry out our test? Explain your

I think the reason we went with adding ACID to BASE in lab is since it is
a small scale experiment, and wiser to not use excess of HCl, since it
could have been quite a wreck. And I say, it wouldn’t really affect the
outcome as once the ACID and BASE are neutral with pH, there is no
problem regardless of what is added into what.

6. Which is more beneficial: to take an antacid BEFORE or AFTER you

feel the heartburn? Why?

i think it is after because if you don’t feel any heartburn, chances are
that you do not need an antacid as it is useless, however if the problem
is regular, I assume it would be wiser to take one down before
breakfast each day, as it would prevent any heart burn from occurring
in the first place.

7. In this lab, we only investigated one form of antacid (liquid form).

Discuss one additional question you would be interested in
investigating with regards to antacid effectiveness. Design an
experimental procedure for which you could follow to test your

I think another for of Antacid that could be experimented on would be

solid forms, since there are many tablets of such forms available at
stores moreso than the liquids, which makes me curious. Is it more
effective than the liquid? Would it work the same way as liquid if they
had same chemical properties? (except the form). Can they have same
chemical properties as liquids in the first place?

06 Nov. 2016.

"General Chemistry Labs." Acid-Base Titrations: Standardization of NaOH and Antacid. N.p., n.d.
Web. 06 Nov. 2016.

"Nonprescription Medicines and Products-Antacids and Acid Reducers." WebMD. WebMD, n.d.
Web. 06 Nov. 2016.

By Relaxing the Lower Esophageal Sphincter to Release Gas, Peppermint Encourages the Release
of a Belch after a Meal, Hence the Popularity of After-dinner Mints. "Antacids." Antacids. N.p.,
n.d. Web. 06 Nov. 2016.