Suffering from sore muscles or a blinding headache? The chances are fair that you are going to reach for some pain relief, but do you know what you are taking? Is it even the most appropriate treatment for this particular ailment? Your local pharmacist will always be happy to offer advice, but in the meantime here are some helpful hints on choosing the right over the counter pain relief.
Understanding Different Types of OTC Pain Relief
When it comes to over the counter pain relief, a local pharmacist can supply two different varieties – Acetaminophens and Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs). Both types can help with pain relief and reducing fever. Acetaminophens include popular medications like Panadol and Tylenol. NSAIDs include ibuprofen-based drugs like Advil and Motrin, aspirin and naproxen.
Acetaminophen is effective for mild pain and is often included in cold and flu medication. NSAIDs are more effective for more complex conditions like arthritis since they not only relieve pain but also help to ease inflammation. Muscular pain and migraines are also treated successfully with NSAIDs.
Always Check Age Restrictions
One of the most important things to take into consideration with over the counter pain relief is age restrictions. Back in the day, it was common to give children things like aspirin if they had a fever. However, with more research being done on the effects of drugs we now know that aspirin is not safe to give anyone under the age of 18 since it can trigger Reye’s Syndrome in children. It is; however; safe to give children ibuprofen and acetaminophen. It is important to give the appropriate dose for their weight and their age, so be sure to seek advice from the local pharmacist. Seniors should also be careful with over the counter medications as they are more susceptible to side effects.
Are You Taking Prescription Medication?
If you are taking any prescription medication, especially blood pressure medications, then you need to ask a local pharmacist if over the counter pain relief is safe to take. It may interact with your prescribed medication in undesirable ways, so it is always better to ask! NSAIDs can also have a negative impact on the stomach, kidneys, and heart so anyone with conditions related to these organs should be cautious.
Always Read the Label
Keep in mind that many over the counter pain relief products are combination medications with several different drugs. This is especially true of cold and flu remedies. Always check the ingredients to make sure you are not taking more than the recommended dose of any single one. For example, if your flu remedy contains acetaminophen, you should not take a separate dose. It is also essential to make sure there is nothing you have an allergy to.
Hopefully, these tips have given you a little more information about over the counter medication. If you need additional advice, stop by and speak with your local pharmacist.
Your Hometown Pharmacy Since 1966
Vaughn Pharmacy is a local, family-owned pharmacy serving the community in Powell, TN. Specializing in providing personalized and attentive prescription programs to our patients, we believe you are more than just a number – you’re part of our family!