You probably have a medicine cabinet full of over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers that you reach for when you’re sick or in pain. You might even know what they are called. But do you know how dangerous some OTC medicines can be? If not, then let’s talk about it.
Tylenol is the brand name for acetaminophen, which is a pain reliever, fever reducer and anti-inflammatory drug. It’s sold over the counter without a prescription in most countries.
Acetaminophen has been linked to autism and ADHD. Some studies have shown that children who take Tylenol every day are more likely than other children to develop Autism or ADHD later in life.
The risk of developing these conditions seems higher in children who take acetaminophen at a young age. A study published in JAMA Pediatrics found that mothers who took Tylenol during pregnancy were more likely than other mothers to have children with Autism or ADHD.
Parents across the country are filing a Tylenol Lawsuit against its manufacturers for failing to warn the public about the potential risk involved with using their product. Also recently, per a report in Reuters, a federal judicial panel has created new mass tort litigation accusing Tylenol major retailers of failing to warn the public about the risk of disorder related to the use of acetaminophen by pregnant women.
Ibuprofen is one of the most common over-the-counter pain relievers. It’s also widely used to treat fever, headaches, and other aches and pains. The global Ibuprofen market is expected to reach $687.77 million by 2023 registering a growth of 2.1%.
But the analgesic can cause serious side effects if you take too much, which people often do when they’re self-medicating with OTC meds like ibuprofen.
- Stomach bleeding: When taken correctly at recommended doses for short periods, ibuprofen is generally safe for adults with no known conditions that put them at risk. But taking even low amounts of ibuprofen over long periods could increase your chances of developing stomach ulcers or bleeding esophageal varices.
This may lead to death if not treated right away by a specialist such as a gastroenterologist or a cardiologist.
- Kidney damage: Ibuprofen has been linked to acute renal failure. So if you take too much or have underlying medical conditions that make it difficult for your kidneys to filter out certain chemicals, talk with your doctor before taking this medication.
Advil is a brand of ibuprofen, which is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It has been approved to treat pain, fever, or inflammation in many areas of the body. Some people also use this medication to reduce swelling associated with arthritis or minor injuries.
Recently Advil Children’s suspension has been much in the news in Canada for being in short supply leading to it selling for as much as $48.75 for each 120 ml bottle.
Call your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects after taking Advil, including:
- Black stools (feces)
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Fluid retention
Motrin (Aka Baby Motrin)
As a pain reliever and anti-inflammatory, Motrin is used for the treatment of headaches, muscle aches, period cramps, and backaches. However, this medication also has serious side effects that can cause more issues for your body than just pain relief.
One of the most common complications from taking Motrin is gastric bleeding caused by damage to the lining of your stomach or intestinal tract. This can result in life-threatening internal bleeding, which requires immediate medical attention from a doctor if not appropriately treated.
It’s important to note that this risk is heightened when taking any other medications that contain NSAIDs (such as aspirin), so it’s always a good idea to check with your doctor before taking anything new on board.
Aleve is an anti-inflammatory medication marketed by Bayer. It’s available over the counter and has been around for decades, but that doesn’t mean it’s safe for you to take. There are many serious health concerns associated with Aleve:
- Heart attacks
- Liver damage
- Kidney damage
- Gastrointestinal bleeding (which can lead to ulcers)
Naproxen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) used to treat pain, swelling, and inflammation caused by arthritis, gout, period cramps, and other conditions. Naproxen can also be used to help relieve rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis pain.
Naproxen may cause serious side effects such as heart attack, stroke and ulcers in the stomach or intestines. Naproxen is not for use in children younger than 12 years old.
As per Statista, the revenue in the pain-relievers segment in the U.S. amounts to $6.73 billion in 2022. The per-person revenue generation in the same period is $20.09.
It’s important to be aware of what you’re taking when it comes to medication, or else you might end up doing more harm than good. Over-the-counter medicine can be an important part of your healthcare routine, but it’s important not to rely on them too much or take them without proper guidance.
With this information in mind, we hope that you’ll consider these points before taking any type of medicine, especially if it has been linked with serious side effects such as these.