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Tylenol (Acetaminophen) is a widely used over-the-counter medication that provides relief from pain and fever. Acetaminophen belongs to a class of drugs known as analgesics (pain relievers) and antipyretics (fever reducers). It works by blocking the body's production of prostaglandins. Prostaglandins are substances that can cause pain, fever, and inflammation.
Acetaminophen is an effective, safe, and non-addictive choice for treating mild to moderate pain, such as headaches, sore throat, muscle aches, backaches, and arthritis. It is a pain reliever and fever reducer commonly used to treat minor aches and pains, including headache, backache, minor pain of arthritis, toothache, muscular aches, premenstrual and menstrual cramps, and to temporarily reduce fever.
Acetaminophen controls pain and fever but does not reduce inflammation, as does aspirin and the other widely consumed nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, generics) and naproxen (Aleve, generics). But unlike NSAIDs, acetaminophen does not irritate the stomach and intestinal lining. That means a person who cannot tolerate NSAIDs can still take acetaminophen. It is an important drug for controlling chronic pain in older adults.
Uses and Dosage
Tylenol (Acetaminophen) is available in the form of tablets usually taken orally, either with or after meals. Follow the dosage instructions on the package or as prescribed by your doctor.
The recommended dosage of 325 mg Acetaminophen tablets is to take 1 or 2 pills at a time, with a gap of at least 6 hours between doses. This should be done four times a day to achieve a maximum daily dosage of 8 pills. Taking more than 10 pills per day should not be done, as it could lead to serious health risks.
Rare but serious side effects of Tylenol (Acetaminophen
- Bloody or black, tarry stools
- Bloody or cloudy urine
- Fever with or without chills
- Pain in the lower back and/or side (severe and/or sharp)
- Pinpoint red spots on the skin
- Skin rash, hives, or itching
- Sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
- Sudden decrease in the amount of urine
- Unusual bleeding or bruising
- Unusual tiredness or weakness
- Yellow eyes or skin
Common side effects of Tylenol (acetaminophen) include:
Form and Strength
Tylenol is available in the following forms and strengths:
Tylenol: Tablet (PMS)
- 325 mg
- Acetaminophen can cause severe liver damage if you take more than 4,000 mg in a 24-hour period, if you are taking other drugs containing acetaminophen, or if you are consuming three or more alcoholic drinks per day while using this product.
- Acetaminophen may cause severe skin reactions, including skin reddening, blisters, and/or rash. If any of these symptoms occur, stop using the product and seek medical help immediately.
- Acetaminophen is a common pain reliever and fever reducer and can cause serious harm if taken in large amounts or if combined with other medications. Store acetaminophen in a safe place and make sure that children do not have access to it.
- Acetaminophen is generally considered safe for use during pregnancy but discuss any potential risks and benefits with a doctor before taking any medication.
- Stop using acetaminophen and seek medical help if pain gets worse or lasts for more than 10 days, fever gets worse or lasts for more than 3 days, new symptoms appear, or if redness or swelling is present. These could be signs of a serious medical condition and should not be ignored.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
Acetaminophen is usually taken as needed. If your doctor has told you to take acetaminophen regularly, take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
Is it safe to take acetaminophen every day?
Acetaminophen is only meant to be used on an "as needed" basis. Long-term use of this medication can cause potential damage to your liver. If you are looking for a maintenance medication for your pain, talk to your provider about other long-term alternatives.
It's important to purchase Tylenol from verified Canadian pharmacy.