How Long Does Tylenol Take To Work?

February 26, 2022 0 Comments


Tylenol or acetaminophen can be described as the common over-the-counter medicine that assists in reducing fever and pain. The other minor body ailments, Tylenol is effective against are, cold, headache, backache, muscle ache, arthritis and toothache. Before you start reading this article, kindly note that Tylenol should not be taken than the recommended dosage prescribed by your doctor. An excess dosage can damage your liver and can lead to death. If you experience stomach pain, loss of appetite, itching, clay-colored stools and nausea after taking the medicine, contact the doctor immediately. In this article on how long does Tylenol take to work information will be given on the duration, side effects and advantages of this drug.



The first drug with the name “Tylenol” was sold in 1955. It was manufactured initially by the company McNeil, but in 1959, the company was acquired by Johnson & Johnson. After becoming the product of the pharmaceutical giant, the popularity of the drug rose to immense proportions. The growth rate was 20 to 30 percent in 1970 and estimated sales profit in 1975 was $60 million.

How Long Does Tylenol Take To Work?

One of the most asked questions by commoners is regarding the medicinal properties of Tylenol and the duration it will start to work on the body. As in all cases, it depends on your body condition and health. The medicine is not going to start its work immediately after ingestion – there are different aspects – the medicine has first to get dissolved in the digestive tract and enter the blood stream. As the content makes its way to the brain, acetaminophen or APAP makes a contribution and blocks all the pain signals giving you relief.

If you have taken the medicine without having food (the stomach is empty), the duration it will make its mark is fifteen to twenty minutes. If your stomach is filled (after a meal), and you take Tylenol, the time it will take to produce effect is half an hour to sixty minutes. Similar to any medicine, it cannot do wonders. Kindly wait and the healing process will fall in place. However, do not take an over dosage to get immediate results.

The effects of Tylenol will stay in the body for four to eight hours and on an average, it can stay in the human body for three to six hours.

Major Medical Component

The major component is ‘acetaminophen.’ However, medical surveys point to deaths (nearly 150 per year) occurring mainly as a result of over-dosage of acetaminophen. The line between the danger zone and the safety zone is slim, but very few warnings have been issued to the customers by the pharmaceutical companies as well as FDA. If you are taking the medicine on your own, you can have a conversation with a pharmacist in case of simple ailments such as lack of sleep, cold, allergy and muscle pain. If you are suffering from body ailments, it is mandatory to check the percentage of acetaminophen in various drugs. Taking the drugs together can add to an overdose and result in disastrous consequences.

It is advised strictly by doctors that you read the labels of all nonprescription and prescription medications to identify the presence of acetaminophen (Tylenol). Kindly note that abbreviated alphabets such as AC, APAP, Acetaminoph, Acetaminop, Acetam, Acetamin or Acetaminophen can be included on the label indicating the presence of Acetaminophen. Confirm with your doctor if you do not know the medication he/she has prescribed contains acetaminophen.

You have to inform the doctor even if you are taking any herbal medicine or dietary supplement.

How Long Does It Take Tylenol To Work?

Instructions For Taking Tylenol

This medicine (whether oral or tablet) has to be taken as per the instructions given by the physician or as per the label. You should take the correct proportion of Tylenol. In case of suspensions, it is advisable to shake the medicine well before taking the dose. There are, however, some medicines that can be taken as the original solution.

The medicine has to be measured by the medicine cup or measuring spoon. If you are administering the tablet to a kid, kindly check whether that is prescribed for the certain age. In case of a liquid form, ensure you use the measuring dropper or oral syringe. If you have been prescribed effervescent tablets, as per the procedure, you can dissolve the dose in the required amount of water and drink the mixture.

In case of chewable tablets of Tylenol, chew well prior to swallowing it. Rapidly dissolving tablets can be chewed or kept in the mouth to get dissolved. It is your wish to swallow without or with water. If you have been given an extended-release tablet, do not perform the action of chewing or crushing with your teeth. This action could release all the chemical components of the drug at a fast pace and you can have side effects. If you have spat the tablets before the given time or before the tablets has got dissolved, the medicinal properties would have been released in the body in less quantity. At any time, if you observe skin rashes (or redness) refrain from using the medicine and seek the guidance of a doctor.

Points To Consider

Inform the doctor if you are allergic to acetaminophen or APAP. If you are allergic to some medicines that might have the same chemical structure such as acetaminophen, he/she might suggest an alternative medicine.

If you have a history of alcohol or taking medication for rehabilitation or suffering from a liver disease, inform the physician.

If you are pregnant or breastfeeding a baby, consult with the physician if taking acetaminophen is safe. You should also exercise caution in case you are planning to get pregnant or start a family.

Do not give Tylenol to children below two years. Consult with a doctor before taking the extreme step.

You should inform the doctor if you are taking/taken Tylenol and

Have fever for more than two days

You suffer from pain after a week

Observe skin rashes, swelling and headache.

If you are undergoing a sugar or urine test, kindly refrain from taking Tylenol as you can get improper results. It is mandatory to tell the lab physician or doctor that you are using this medicine and they can give you the date the test can be conducted.

How Often Can I Take Tylenol?

If you are prescribed the medicine and you have missed a dose, take it as soon as possible. You can skip the dose if the time has almost reached for the next one. Do not take an over dose because you want to compensate for the missed one.

Overdose Effects

The symptoms can be from normal stomach pain to serious conditions such as frequent vomiting. The initial stages of a Tylenol overdose are loss of appetite, diarrhea, excess sweat, fatigue, nausea and stomach pain (cramps). Secondary symptoms are clay-colored stools, dark urine and stomach.

Side Effects Of Tylenol

Similar to any medicine, the side effects are hives, allergies in skin, headaches, constipation, vomiting, swelling in feet, hands, eyes, face, tongue, difficulty in breathing and insomnia. The secondary or serious side effects are rashes, nausea, loss of appetite, rashes and red skin.

How Often Can You Take Tylenol?

You can take in four-hour duration (1000 mg) and the maximum dose prescribed for a day is 4000 mg. The medicine is preferred to seeking relief from pain, fever and aches that occur because of cold or flu. It has to be noted that the dosage has been reduced by the manufacturers to prevent casualties.

Tylenol Regular Strength

The tablets have 325 mg of acetaminophen and two tablets can be taken in four to six-hour duration. You can continue the dosage till you get relief from the simple ailments. However, you should not exceed ten pills in a day.

Tylenol Extra Strength(500 mg)

Experts have prescribed that two caplets can be taken one time in a duration of six hours. Unless advised by the doctor, never exceed the number of six caplets in a day.

Tylenol Arthritis Pain(650 mg)

The permission is given to take two caplets one time in every eight hours. Similar to Tylenol Extra Strength, the number should not exceed six in a day.

Tylenol Dosage Information For Children

Without proper instructions from the doctor or pediatrician, kindly do not administer Tylenol to the children. This aspect stands true if the kid is below twelve years or you are not sure of the dosage. Ensure you take into account the below-mentioned conditions:

The child should be given 10 to 15 mg for each kilogram of the body weight.

The maximum number of doses recommended to children is five. For more, consult the doctor.

If the kid is below six months, it is mandatory in case of an emergency to seek the services of a professional.

Interactions of Tylenol

It is also important you should know the interactions of this drug with medicines and other substances.

If you cannot go to bed without consuming alcohol, then you need to have a discussion with the doctor regarding the use of Tylenol. If you have an alcohol liver problem, you are prone to liver injuries because of using this drug.

If you are taking other drugs because of a surgery or medical condition, kindly check the volume of acetaminophen as it could lead to a lethal over-dose.

Interaction can happen with Diflunisal (Dolobid), Phenobarbital (Luminal), Phenytoin (Dilantin), Isoniazid (Nydrazid, Laniazid – used to treat tuberculosis) and rifampin. The physician may be the best person to suggest an alternative and there have been cases in which the treatment was modified to avoid the interaction side effects. In case of interaction with isoniazid, it might lead to increase in liver problems.

Some of the other drugs that can cause interaction side effects as a result of taking Tylenol are Aspirin or acetylsalicylic acid, blood thinners such as Dabigatran (also warfarin), Antiepileptic drugs (carbamazepine & phenytoin), Barbiturates (phenobarbital), Cholestyramine etc.

Experts have given the results that it is safe to take Tylenol and Advil together. However, the time duration of taking the medicine has to be perfect. If you are suffering from a medical condition and have taken Advil, but still you have pain, you can take Tylenol but after a duration of two to three hours.

How To Store Tylenol

The drug in any form has to be stored at a temperature of 20 to 25 degree Celsius (68 and 77 degrees in Fahrenheit). It is mandatory that the store place has to be immune against light, heat and moisture. Ensure the drug is out of reach from pets and children.


For more than half a century, Tylenol has been sold without a doctor’s prescription. The range and dosage have improved, with the main aim of creating good health. The name has become a brand and it is the most sought after pain reliever recommended by physicians for simple ailment, of course with a detailed look on the patient’s medical history.

Remember, Tylenol has never been known or prescribed for reducing inflammation. Some people, who have arthritis, take the drug for granted and consume them. Agreed, this drug can reduce symptoms only for mild to medium osteoarthritis.

The drug might be your first choice if:

You have crossed the age of 60.

You are suffering from stomach problems

You are in medication for high blood pressure.