If you do not get enough magnesium you can develop sleep disorders such as not being able to fall asleep easy due to anxiety, insomnia and restless leg syndrome (RLS). It is also known to cause muscle weakness, abnormal heartbeat, low blood pressure, hyperventilation, mental confusion and possibly eye twitches. It is best to contact your doctor to see if you have a magnesium deficiency otherwise too much magnesium side effects are drowsiness, blurred vision, difficulty breathing, coma and muscle paralysis. Although not very common is hypermagnesemia a condition when the kidneys are unable to eliminate excess magnesium from the body. Your body regulates magnesium levels by shifting magnesium into and out of cells. When there is a breakdown or destruction of cells, the electrolyte magnesium moves from inside the cell, to outside of the cell wall. This shift of magnesium outside of the cells causes hypermagnesemia.
The most common effect of hypermagnesemia is renal failure, but some other conditions are; hypothyroidism, Addison disease, depression and familial hypocalciuric hypercalcemia. Hypocalciuric means low levels of calcium in the urine and hypercalcemia is high levels of calcium in the blood. A high concentration of magnesium bring about the condition known as bradycardia which can result in fainting, shortness of breath or if severe enough cardiac arrest. Diagnosis is usually easy to determine by measuring serum magnesium levels in your blood.
You can be getting too much magnesium in your diet by taking a magnesium supplement, form of laxatives (milk of magnesia) or an antacid. Hypermagnesemia has been reported after enemas containing magnesium. If your doctor has determined you have too much magnesium he may prescribe medications to lower the levels, like calcium. Avoid supplements, laxatives and antacids if your kidneys aren’t working properly. If you rely on a laxative because you get easily constipated increase your diet to include fiber and fruit. 25 grams to 35 grams of fiber a day should keep your bowels moving. High fiber foods include cereals, breads and starchy vegetables (such as corn, green peas, potatoes and lima beans). I LOVE LIMA BEANS! Speaking about beans, you also should include dried beans and legumes, whether they’re pinto beans, red beans, lima beans, black beans, navy beans or garbanzo beans as they are excellent sources of fiber. More information see: Magnesium Rich Foods
A number of prescription and over-the-counter medications can cause constipation. If you’re currently taking any medication, you might want to ask your doctor or pharmacist whether it could be causing your constipation. Among the drugs that can cause constipation are calcium-channel blockers taken for high blood pressure, beta blockers, some antidepressants, narcotics and other pain medications, antihistamines (to a lesser degree), certain decongestants and some antacids. Antacids that contain calcium or aluminum are binding and can cause constipation; antacids that contain magnesium tend not to cause constipation. If you are unsure what’s in your antacid, check the label or ask your pharmacist or doctor.
Drink plenty of liquid to decrease your chances of being dehydrated, which can lead to constipation. Drink 2 to 3 liters of fluid every 24 hours, unless you were told to restrict your fluid intake. Avoid caffeine and alcohol, as these can cause you to have electrolyte disturbances and alcohol stimulates renal excretion of magnesium.
If you have severely elevated levels your doctor may order dialysis treatments. Severely elevated levels can affect your ability to eat because you are nauseous or vomiting. It is important to talk to your doctor right away if you feel too weak to move and/or have heart palpitations. Remember the possibility for a magnesium overdose is from magnesium supplements or products that contain magnesium and nearly impossible from diet alone. Have your doctor check your magnesium levels and make sure you have a list of all your prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications and herbal supplements that you are taking. Until your test results come back and you need something extra to reduce your anxiety so you can fall sleep easy or relieve symptoms of RLS eat magnesium rich foods such as nuts, oatmeal, bananas or shredded wheat cereal. For more information see Magnesium Sleep
The content provided in Too Much Magnesium Side Effects – Hypermagnesemia is for information purposes only, intended to raise the awareness of different solutions for you or your families sleep problems and should not be considered medical advice. For medical diagnosis and treatment, please see your qualified health-care professional.