Pros: Manufactured by Pepto Bismol; can take with you anywhere.
Cons: Doesn't provide immediate relief like Liquid Pepto Bismol.
When it comes to writing reviews about over the counter medications, I may not be your average adult. Why? Because I would rather take a disgusting liquid that is fast acting and plug my nose to avoid the awful, then to substitute immediate relief for something that can easily be swallowed by taking a couple tablets, gel caps, or caplets. I grew up taking Pepto Bismol for all of those little stomach problems that life brings about. Whether it was nervous butterflies in the pit of my stomach, diarrhea, nausea, or just the onset of an upset stomach, that tried and true bottle of chalky pink liquid was like a doctor in the house for many years. I remember when they introduced the Pepto Bismol chewable tablets, and I refused to let go of my pink liquid. Then I can recall a time when only the chewable tablets were around, so I grabbed them for relief, and besides their chalky taste, they didnt do much for my stomach symptoms. When they finally introduced Pepto Bismol Caplets to the market, I was a bit skeptical, after all their chewable tablets never provided relief, so would the caplets? I was about to find out.
Let me start by saying that Pepto Bismol is not a cure all for all stomach problems. There are some things that Pepto Bismol claims to do really well, that Pepto Bismol does nothing for in my life. Pepto Bismol claims that it relieves heartburn, and my experience is that a Tums chewable tablet has more of an impact on heartburn than Pepto Bismol does. Pepto Bismol claims that is relieves indigestion, and my experience has been that indigestion usually comes from gas from eating too much and Pepto Bismol can do very little about that after the fact. Pepto Bismol claims to treat nausea however my experience with Pepto Bismol and nausea is that when you take Pepto Bismol you get pink colored nausea. Pepto Bismol does live up to two of its claims just about every time, and they are the treatment of upset stomach and diarrhea. I say just about every time, because sometimes an upset stomach caused by other problems like excess gas is not relieved by taking Pepto Bismol, and sometimes diarrhea is so persistent that a big bowl of popcorn and all day doses of Imodium do little to slow it down. Pepto Bismol remains a tried and true friend because it does one thing really well; it treats the upset stomach blahs. Stomach aches that I have treated with Pepto Bismol include spasms caused by diarrhea, stomach aches caused by being in the backseat of a car too long, nervous stomach pains, anxious stomach pains, stress induced stomach pains, stomach aches that accompany the flu, and stomach aches follow food poisoning. In all of these situations Pepto Bismol was used as the soothing product that calms down the stomach, and did not necessarily treat the condition itself. One thing I have learned is that everyones stomach reacts differently to Pepto Bismol, so some people may experience immediate relief, while others experience delayed relief, while still others experience little to no relief at all.
The ingredients found in Pepto Bismol caplets are similar to the ingredients found in regular liquid Pepto Bismol. Of course, to make the caplet, you have to add other ingredients, so, heres the quick list of what Pepto Bismol caplets contain:
Bismuth subsalicylate 262 milligrams, Calcium Carbonate, Magnesium Stearate, Mannitol, Microcrystalline Cellulose, Polysorbate 80, Povidone, Red 27 Aluminum Lake, Silicon Dioxide, and Sodium Starch Glycolate. Each caplet is also low in sodium with 2 milligrams of sodium per caplet in addition to being sugar free.
Storing Pepto Bismol Caplets is easier than storing Pepto Bismol liquid for me, because personally I enjoy the flavor of Pepto Bismol liquid more when its kept in the refrigerator. Of course, a refrigerator is not always handy, nor is a little plastic measuring cup, so Pepto Bismol Caplets are the product of choice to carry with you in a purse, in your car, or on your carryon luggage on an airplane. Like all caplets, you want to store these in a cool dry place, if the temperature gets too hot, or moisture gets into the bottle, the caplets will stick together and become difficult to separate. Storing the product away from excessive moisture also extends the shelf life of the opened product. Pepto Bismol Chewable Tablets are individually wrapped which makes them really easy to take with you. I was hoping that Pepto Bismol Caplets would be individually wrapped as well, but alas, they come in one of those child proof over the counter medicine bottles.
Now is the time in this review that we get to all of the warnings that come with a product. First, I want to put my own little warning in. The active ingredient found in Pepto Bismol Caplets is Bismuth subsalicylate. A couple years ago (2004), the FDA made Pepto Bismol and other companies whose products contained this active ingredient change their labels. The change was made because these products are no longer recommended for use in children under 12 years of age. A lot of parents may not even be aware that a change was made, but a change was made, and if you read the label, they warn against giving the product to children under 12 years old. Some pediatricians still recommend the use of Pepto Bismol in children and you should never go against what your pediatrician orders for your child under normal circumstances, so you as a parent should decide if its the best over the counter remedy for your child or not. If you do decide to give your child Pepto Bismol, do not give it to them if they have chicken pox or flu like symptoms as they could be an early sign of Reyes Syndrome. If you take aspirin on a daily basis for blood thinning reasons, heart reasons, or any other reason, you should avoid taking Pepto Bismol Caplets. If you take other salicylate products, you should avoid taking Pepto Bismol Caplets. If you are allergic to salicylates, aspirin, or similar medications, you should avoid taking Pepto Bismol Caplets. If you have bloody stools, dark black stools, ulcers, a high fever, mucus in the stool, are on blood thinners or anticoagulants, or if you have diabetes, gout, or arthritis you should ask your doctor before taking Pepto Bismol Caplets.
I have seen two different sized bottles of Pepto Bismol Caplets on the market, a 24 count and a 40 count, but the product is the same in both cases. The flavor of Pepto Bismol Caplets is what you might expect from Pepto Bismol. The caplets are pink and chalky. But then again, isnt the whole purpose of caplets to swallow them quickly so that you dont taste them? When they say caplets you might be thinking along the lines of a gel cap, but Pepto Bismol Caplets are shaped more like a rounded edged rectangular tablet than they are a gel cap. I have difficulty swallowing pills, and I have never had trouble swallowing Pepto Bismol Caplets. They are also perforated in the center, so if you had trouble swallowing the caplet, you could use a knife or a pill cutter to cut the caplet in half, however it would definitely increase the caplets chalky taste. 2 Pepto Bismol caplets should be swallowed, not chewed, with a glass of water by adults and children 12 years of age or older every ? hour to 1 hour as needed. You should not exceed 8 doses or 16 caplets in any given 24 hour period.
Pepto Bismol Caplets may bare the Pepto Bismol name, and in all theory, and based on the ingredients they should work as efficiently and effectively as Pepto Bismol Liquid does. However, it has been my experience that most of the immediate relief that comes from Pepto Bismol comes from the coating that the liquid does as its going down. When I have a really bad stomach ache, I dont want to wait for relief, and sometimes it can take 15 minutes to a half an hour for Pepto Bismol Caplets to provide relief whereas with Pepto Bismol Liquid I experience immediate relief of my most common symptoms. For anyone who needs a sure fire stomach remedy and cannot stand the chalky pink Pepto Bismol Liquid, I would recommend that they try the Pepto Bismol Caplets. If you can stomach the chalky pink liquid however, you will definitely experience faster relief than you will by taking Pepto Bismol Caplets, and hey, the liquid is even available in chalky pink cherry flavor now as well.
Price wise, you will pay more for Pepto Bismol Caplets, unless you catch them on sale then you will for Pepto Bismol Liquid. In our area, you can buy liquid Pepto Bismol at the dollar stores, whereas Pepto Bismol Caplets can cost $4 or more for a single box. If you normally pay full price for Pepto Bismol products and do not buy them when they are on sale, you will not notice the price difference, as you get more doses in a box of Pepto Bismol Caplets than you do in a bottle of Pepto Bismol Liquid.