Why Does Old Aspirin Has Vinegar Smell?

Published: 19th May 2010
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Aspirin is made from salicylic acid and acetic acid. It is a type of drug which is identified as acetylsalicylic acid. It has been widely used in the medical field to cure sickness especially fever and also back pains and aches. When consume, it is said to be able to reduce your body temperature with the right amount of water consumed. Although it is good to cure fever but it must be taken at a regulated amount. Overdosing of aspirin might cause internal bleeding especially in the stomach as well as ulcer problems. Thus, you should always consult your doctors or physicians on the right amount of aspirin allowed. It very much depends on your age and body system.
A lot of people will keep aspirin at their home in case if anyone of the family members fall sick. However, as everyone can experience, aspirin changes its structure as well as the smell after keeping for a long time. So, why does old aspirin has vinegar smell? As all of us are aware of, aspirin is purely made from salicylic acid and acetic acid via hydrolysis process. After keeping for quite some time, the components start to decompose. The main reasons would be due to moisture or some other factor like environment condition. When it starts to decompose, the smell is created. The acetic acid of aspirin creates the smell of vinegar. This is clearly shown in the main ingredients of vinegar where it contains acetic acid as well.
There are actually several reasons why does old aspirin has vinegar smell. The first factor is contributed by the place where you store the aspirin. If you store at a humid place, the tendency of moisture seep into the aspirin is high. Other than that, it depends also how you keep the aspirin. Make sure you place them in an airtight container to ensure dryness. Also, avoid placing the container at places where it is exposed to direct sunlight. It may decompose the aspirin even faster to generate vinegar smell. Most of the people are advisable to keep the aspirin at their kitchen cabinet in a sealed container. Avoid your children from taking it easily from the cabinet. At the same time, try not to keep a lot of aspirin tablets at home because you might not need them everyday and it might get deteriorate easily.
Now that you have known the reason why aspirin smell like vinegar after keeping for long at home, make sure you keep them at a suitable environment to avoid this to happen. Once the smell of vinegar is getting stronger, just discard the aspirin and get new ones.

Stuart is writing for many websites, He enjoys writing on wide range of topics such as why does old aspirin smell like vinegar and identify pills. You may visit for more details.

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