This past week chemistry students performed an inquiry-based scientific investigation on which antacid works best to relieve acid reflux. They began their investigation by researching six common antacids: Tums, Pepcid, Alka-Seltzer, Pepto- Bismol, Rolaids, and Maalox. Students then created posters which showcased the chemical formula, active ingredients, and side effects of the different antacids. With all of this newfound knowledge, students were able to begin their inquiry-based investigation.
Students selected an antacid to test and performed an acid-base neutralization titration, which determines how much acid can be neutralized by an antacid. This process entails carefully adding acid to a base (the antacid) until an end point is reached. Having completed this experiment, students then determined the average volume of acid neutralized per gram of antacid to determine which was the most effective. After all of their hard work, students found that Pepto-Bismol was the most effective at neutralizing acid. After completing the investigation, Justine Torres shared her thoughts, “It was cool. I liked working with antacids and acids.” Maritza Estrada said, “Labs are better than actual work because it’s hands-on.”