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If you’re dealing with an injury, illness, or chronic illness, chances are you’ve reached for a bottle of Advil or Tylenol at some point. Both medications are very helpful when it comes to keeping pain (and fever) at bay.
Taking Tylenol And Advil At The Same Time
These over-the-counter medications are especially helpful during flu season and the COVID-19 pandemic, when you can get sick and struggle with symptoms like fever, body aches, and sore throat. In general, people with a cold, flu, or COVID-19 should recover at home.
How Pain Relievers Like Tylenol And Ibuprofen Work
While you’re resting and drinking plenty of water, you may be wondering which over-the-counter medications will help you feel better faster. Top of the list? Ibuprofen and acetaminophen (aka Advil and Tylenol).
Doctors say these medicines will control your fever and pain until you get better, but what is the best way to use them? And are they safe to swap or even take together? Here’s what you need to know.
Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB) is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is often used over the counter to relieve fever, swelling, and minor pain for headaches, muscle aches, arthritis, menstrual cramps, and common cold. or the flu, according to the US National Institutes of Health libraries. Ibuprofen works by preventing your body from making substances that can cause pain, fever, and inflammation.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is often used for the same reason as ibuprofen—it’s in a different class of drugs called analgesics (pain relievers) and antipyretics (fever reducers). The exact mechanism by which acetaminophen works is not fully understood, but it helps the body cool down while changing the way your body perceives pain.
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If you’re experiencing minor pain or discomfort from a respiratory virus, injury, or chronic illness, it’s best to start with just one medication to see if it helps, says Richard Watkins, MD, an infectious disease physician and professor of internal medicine. Northeast Ohio Medical University.
Acetaminophen doesn’t help, you can try switching between the two. It’s “an old trick of family doctors and pediatricians to reduce fever because it allows more medicine to be taken in a dose,” says John Selick, MD, an infectious disease specialist and professor of medicine at the University at Buffalo/SUNY in New York. . York.
It’s perfectly safe to do so as long as you follow the dosing instructions on the bottle carefully (or talk to your pharmacist beforehand to make sure you’re cycling correctly).
Here’s how it works: “Once you take a dose, the level of [a certain drug] in your body rises and then slowly falls,” explains Jamie Allan, Pharm. D., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Pharmacy, Michigan State University. “Once the levels start to drop, flu symptoms may reappear. However, the drug level [in your body] has not dropped enough to safely take the next dose.’
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Taking another medication — acetaminophen if you took ibuprofen first or vice versa — will help “relieve symptoms through a different mechanism,” Allan says. “By the time you go to take the first dose again, the level will have dropped to a safe dose and the cycle continues.”
But again, you should watch your doses carefully. “You should not exceed the maximum daily dose of any product because of the risk of toxicity,” warns David Chenima, MD, an infectious disease specialist at Rutgers School of Medicine in New Jersey. “People sometimes forget that acetaminophen can also be in other things, like cough/cold medicine, so they accidentally overdose.”
Bad, you don’t need to take medicine even if you have a fever. “In my private practice, I prefer to treat fevers only if they are dangerous or ineffective,” he explains.
125 mg of ibuprofen. The company claims it can help relieve mild pain for up to eight hours.
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Before you try, make sure you’re not already taking medications (such as over-the-counter cold medications) that contain acetaminophen or ibuprofen, because taking too much of either drug can be dangerous, says Dr. Alan.
If you have a fever or body aches and cycling ibuprofen and acetaminophen at appropriate doses isn’t helping, technically you can take both medications at the same time as long as you “take the medication carefully and on the right schedule to reduce toxicity.” “, says Dr. Selik. “Too much acetaminophen is toxic to the liver; ibuprofen can be toxic to the kidneys.’
Bottom line: Always read the dosage instructions on the bottle labels. And when in doubt, check with your doctor or pharmacist to make sure you’re taking all your medications safely.
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Is It Safe To Take Ibuprofen And Tylenol Together?
Corinne Miller is a freelance writer specializing in general wellness, sexual and relationship health, and lifestyle, with work appearing in Men’s Health, Women’s Health, Self, Glamor and more. He has a master’s degree from American University, lives on the beach and hopes to one day own a pig and a taco truck.
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Advil Plus Acetaminophen
Pain relievers are a good option for everyday aches and pains. They are widely available and help relieve mild to moderate pain in a variety of conditions: sore throat, period pain, toothache, sprained ligaments, muscle pain, stomach pain, minor pain, headache, arthritis pain, and severe pain. more. Some popular pain relievers are ibuprofen and acetaminophen.
You may know acetaminophen by the brand name Tylenol. Ibuprofen is also a pain reliever under the brand names Advil and Motrin.
“Acetaminophen is a drug that is normally made in the liver,” says Sasson Masachi, MD, a primary care physician in Beverly Hills, California. “Ibuprofen is an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug) that causes inhibition of a specific enzyme in the body.”
Acetaminophen and ibuprofen are both effective in reducing fever and pain. However, ibuprofen also reduces inflammation and has antiplatelet effects. As an anticoagulant, ibuprofen reduces the formation of blood clots and can increase the risk of bleeding. RELATED: Information about Acetaminophen | Ibuprofen in detail
Tylenol Or Advil? Not Created Equal For Pain Relief
It is safe to use acetaminophen and ibuprofen together in recommended doses. A 2019 Cochrane review found that ibuprofen plus acetaminophen (another name for acetaminophen) provided better relief than either drug alone and reduced the need for additional pain medication by about eight hours.
Although it is safe to use these pain relievers together, Dr. Masachi recommends taking acetaminophen and ibuprofen at the same time only a few times. “Sometimes we have patients who alternate between ibuprofen and Tylenol specifically for fever relief, so we can get the benefits of both drugs without the risk of side effects,” he says.
Ibuprofen and acetaminophen can be used together safely, but should always be used in the lowest possible dose for relief and not exceed the recommended daily dose.
“The usual safe dose of ibuprofen is up to [maximum] 800 milligrams (mg) per dose every eight hours, and acetaminophen is 650 mg every six hours when taken together, assuming normal kidney and liver function, “Dr. Masachi said.
Using Tylenol And Advil Together In Children And Adults
There are different doses of ibuprofen and acetaminophen. The usual dose of over-the-counter ibuprofen is 200-400 mg every six hours. Adults should not take more than a maximum of 3,200 mg of ibuprofen per day. Given the potential for side effects at high doses in many patient populations, patients should take the lowest dose necessary for pain relief. Patients should start at low doses, reaching a dose of no more than 1,200 mg per day, before increasing the dose to the maximum daily dose of 3,200 mg per day. It is important to pay close attention to package labels when taking over-the-counter ibuprofen or acetaminophen. It is important to consider the age of the person taking the medicine. Recommended doses for children are different from adults. Concerned parents are advised to consult a pharmacist or pediatrician if they are not sure what dose to give their child.
Acetaminophen is usually available in 325-650 mg. A single dose is usually two 325 mg tablets taken every six hours. The maximum dose of acetaminophen is no more than 1,000 mg at one time or 3,000 mg in 24 hours. In rare cases, a
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