Zinc Lozenges

Zinc lozenge supplements claim to treat the symptoms of a cold. Zinc is a mineral in your body that helps your immune system and metabolism do their jobs. This supplement comes as a lozenge that you place in your mouth to let it dissolve slowly. Follow the instructions on the supplement to take this medicine as directed.

What is this medication?

ZINC (zingk) may support immune system health. It is often used to reduce the length and severity of cold symptoms.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.

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What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • An unusual or allergic reaction to zinc, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • Breast-feeding

How should I use this medication?

Dissolve entire lozenge in mouth. Do not chew or swallow whole. Take it as directed on the label. Take it with food if it upsets your stomach. After taking it, do not eat or drink for at least 15 minutes. Do not eat or drink citrus fruits or juices for 30 minutes before or after taking it. Do not use it more often than directed.

Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. While it may be given to children as young as 12 years for selected conditions, precautions do apply.

Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.

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What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medication?

  • Baloxavir
  • Edetate calcium, EDTA
  • Eltrombopag
  • Iron supplements
  • Quinolone antibiotics, such as ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin, moxifloxacin
  • Tetracycline antibiotics, such as doxycyline, minocycline, tetracycline

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.

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What should I watch for while using this medication?

Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. Tell your care team if your symptoms do not start to get better or if they get worse. If you need to use this medication for more than 7 days, talk to your care team.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?

Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:

  • Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):

  • Heartburn
  • Metallic taste in mouth
  • Upset stomach

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Where should I keep my medication?

Keep out of the reach of children and pets.

Store in a cool, dry place. Get rid of any unused medication after the expiration date.

To get rid of medications that are no longer needed or have expired:

  • Take the medication to a medication take-back program. Check with your pharmacy or law enforcement to find a location.
  • If you cannot return the medication, check the label or package insert to see if the medication should be thrown out in the garbage or flushed down the toilet. If you are not sure, ask your care team. If it is safe to put it in the trash, take the medication out of the container. Mix the medication with cat litter, dirt, coffee grounds, or other unwanted substance. Seal the mixture in a bag or container. Put it in the trash.

NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.

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Note: Introduction and Additional Common Questions written and medically approved by Cleveland Clinic professionals.

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