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Tylenol or Advil…Which Should You Use?

Chances are just about any medicine cabinet you look in you’ll find acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil), many people heavily rely on these medications to help treat and control a wide variety of conditions and ailments. But how do you know which one you should take? This article can be used as a guide (which has been developed based on information presented in an info graphic from the Cleveland Clinic Health Hub) to help determine which medication will be most effective for your particular ailments. While both medications have been proven to provide effective pain relief and to ease sore throats, studies have indicated that one of the medications may be more effective for treating certain types of ailments than the other….


Tylenol (Acetaminophen)

Advil (Ibuprofen)




Menstrual Cramps

Sore throats

Inflammation (swelling)

Easing pain



Sore muscles




While both of these medications are effective, ibuprofen tends to be more powerful when it comes to fighting fevers, pain, and inflammation while acetaminophen tends work better for arthritic conditions and headaches. Both of these over-the-counter medications have their own benefits and drawbacks associated with them. While taking too much acetaminophen can cause damage to the liver, long-term use of ibuprofen can cause kidney damage and lead to heart attacks and strokes. While the side effects from acetaminophen are very minimal, ibuprofen has been linked to severe stomach ulcers, heartburn, GI upset, and constipation. It also important to keep in mind that more 150 different OTC medications also contain acetaminophen, so it is extremely important to check the labels of all the products you take to make sure you’re not exceeding the maximum daily dose of 3,250mg per day. We should also note that ibuprofen should not be taken before or after heart surgery. Which ever medication you decide to use, remember to use the smallest dose possible and for the shortest duration as possible.



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