Proper Use

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

Zinc supplements are most effective if they are taken at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals. However, if zinc supplements cause stomach upset, they may be taken with a meal. You should tell your health care professional if you are taking your zinc supplement with meals.

Dosing

The dose medicines in this class will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of these medicines. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage forms (capsules, lozenges, tablets, extended-release tablets):
    • To prevent deficiency, the amount taken by mouth is based on normal daily recommended intakes (Note that the normal daily recommended intakes are expressed as an actual amount of zinc. The dosage form [e.g., zinc gluconate, zinc sulfate] has a different strength):

      For the U.S

      • Adult and teenage males—15 milligrams (mg) per day.
      • Adult and teenage females—12 mg per day.
      • Pregnant females—15 mg per day.
      • Breast-feeding females—16 to 19 mg per day.
      • Children 4 to 10 years of age—10 mg per day.
      • Children birth to 3 years of age—5 to 10 mg per day.

      For Canada

      • Adult and teenage males—9 to 12 mg per day.
      • Adult and teenage females—9 mg per day.
      • Pregnant females—15 mg per day.
      • Breast-feeding females—15 mg per day.
      • Children 7 to 10 years of age—7 to 9 mg per day.
      • Children 4 to 6 years of age—5 mg per day.
      • Children birth to 3 years of age—2 to 4 mg per day.
    • To treat deficiency:
      • Adults, teenagers, and children—Treatment dose is determined by prescriber for each individual based on severity of deficiency.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

If you miss taking zinc supplements for one or more days there is no cause for concern, since it takes some time for your body to become seriously low in zinc. However, if your health care professional has recommended that you take zinc, try to remember to take it as directed every day.

Storage

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.