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The market sells some Vitamin C pills and when you put it into a glass of water, it dissolves itself and causes tiny bubbles in the water as shown in the picture above.

Is it correct to say "Vitamin C pills bubble up and dissolve when they are in the water"?

  • 3
    You can use a very fun word for this one! Effervesce! They effervesce and dissolve.
    – EllieK
    Aug 10, 2021 at 15:05
  • 3
    Another less precise term is "fizz". They fizz and dissolve.
    – jwh20
    Aug 10, 2021 at 15:43
  • 2
    Saying that the pills "bubble up" isn't really idiomatic. It would sound more natural to say the gas bubbles up, but not the pills.
    – stangdon
    Aug 10, 2021 at 16:01
  • The pills "bubble" (= "release bubbles"), but they do not "bubble up" (= "rise to the top as bubbles")
    – gotube
    Aug 10, 2021 at 20:08

1 Answer 1


In general, because "bubble up" uses the word "up" it implies that the thing you are talking about is actually rising (due to bubbles). Therefore, it is usually used when talking about the gases or bubbles themselves rising to the surface (or sometimes when talking about something else being carried up to the surface by the motion of surrounding bubbles, etc).

Since these sorts of tablets are usually not carried up to the surface by the bubbles, therefore, that's not a term people would usually use in this case, I think. Instead, I would personally be inclined to say something like "vitamin C pills produce bubbles and dissolve when they are in the water" (but as others have mentioned, there are a number of possible other synonyms for "produce bubbles" which could be used as well)

  • Bits of spaghetti in soda water will collect bubbles and rise to the top, then release the bubbles, fall down, and start the process again. I would not call this process "bubbling up", so the fact that the tablets don't rise isn't the reason "bubbling up" is incorrect.
    – gotube
    Aug 10, 2021 at 20:13

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