How Much Acetaminophen Is Safe?
‘Health is Wealth,’ everyone knows it, but, in real life, does today’s generation have understood this quote completely? The answer is NO. Neglecting proper diets, longer office hours, loads of work, busy schedules and hectic life, are some of the many reasons, why people are neglecting their health and well-being. It is leading to many of serious health issues, for example, body ache, toothache, backache, headache, and sometimes-severe issues like arthritis. In today’s competitive world, it is not at all possible to compromise with your work, but at the same time, it is essential that you take care of your health. Therefore, having the proper diets, exercising your body are some of the important things you cannot ignore. However, at the same time it is important to get the instant relief from the pain you are suffering, whether it is body ache, headache, toothache or any other. In such cases, acetaminophen is the solution. Now you will be thinking, what acetaminophen is? Why the only acetaminophen is the solution? At last, how much acetaminophen is safe? Are there any side effects? We will look into all the answers in this article, and will also be clearing all of your doubts regarding the acetaminophen. So, just sit back, relax and acquaint yourself about all the details of acetaminophen that you need to know because you cannot overlook the major information about any medicine.
A Brief Introduction On Acetaminophen
Before looking into the details of acetaminophen, let us have basic understanding about the medication. Acetaminophen is primarily used in the reduction of fever and painful condition and is very effective in treating such situations. You may not be aware of, there are over 50 million people only in America who take the dose of acetaminophen, either directly or in combination with some other medication every week. Furthermore, there are around 600 tablets that have acetaminophen that you can get it in OTC or over-the-counter medicines and the prescribed medicines from the doctors or healthcare professionals.
The acetaminophen is effective in the treatment of numerous conditions, which include arthritis, toothaches, muscle aches, cold, backache and some of the fever related issues. However, many other uses of medication, which are not listed here or inside the medication guides. To get the complete information about the uses of acetaminophen, go and consult with your doctor or the healthcare professional.
You may have no idea, but acetaminophen is only the name of the drug and comes in the combination along with many other medications. Hence, you can find acetaminophen in the name of many brands and in several forms, which include solid, liquid, chewable tablets and many more. We will have a detailed look in these forms in the article, as we will proceed further.
How Much Acetaminophen Is Too Much?
Now comes the most important part, the recommended dosage of acetaminophen. If you are a normal adult with around 150 pounds of weight, the doctors or the healthcare professionals recommend a dose of around 4000 milligrams (mg). Although, it is the recommended dosage, which can be changed from person to person, depending on their weights.
Acetaminophen- Some Essential Information
Before looking into the side effects, recommended dosage and severe other things about acetaminophen, let us acquaint ourselves with some of the essential information about it. You cannot afford to overlook this essential information because it may lead to many circumstances that can be harmful.
Do not go for, more or less than the recommended dosage of acetaminophen, as there can be fatal health results that can affect you severely. If you overdose the acetaminophen, there may be serious circumstances that you may have to face. Some of them include the damage to your liver or even death from it. If, in any case, you feel that you have taken more than the recommended dose of this medicine, immediately call 911 or inform your doctor or the healthcare professional about it. Moreover, there are many side effects of overdosing acetaminophen. We will look into them in details later.
Make sure that you do not take even the tiniest dose of acetaminophen without consulting with your doctor or the healthcare professional. Moreover, if you have suffered from any liver disease in the past, inform about it to your doctor, if he is advising you to go for a dose of acetaminophen. Especially, if you have been a regular drinker and have suffered from the cirrhosis, or if you take alcohol around three times a day, you must avoid acetaminophen completely. Hence, if you are on the course of acetaminophen, totally stop the alcohol consumption, so that it does not affect your liver and any kind of liver problem can be prevented in the initial stage only.
Acetaminophen is not only good for the reduction of fever or pain but also helps in curing the symptoms of cold, sleep disorders, allergy and many more. While buying any of the cold or allergy medicine from the pharmacist’s shop, always look whether the medicine contains the dose of acetaminophen as one of the compositions. You can confirm the presence of acetaminophen in the composition, if the APAP is written on the label of the medication, you are buying. APAP is the abbreviated form of acetaminophen and is present as one of the compositions in many tablets or medications.
If you are taking more than two medications, again check whether both medications’ label has APAP written on it. If yes, then it may be harmful to you because you will be overdosing the acetaminophen, which have some fatal results, discussed above. Hence, always keep in mind and look for the term APAP written on the label of the medications you are buying.
There is one more negative effect of taking more than the recommended dose of acetaminophen. However, it is extremely rare, and only a few people may experience it. It is the skin reaction. If you get the skin reaction over your body, then there are high chances that you have taken more than the recommended dose of acetaminophen. If this is the case, immediately consult your doctor or the healthcare professional.
What Can You Not Overlook, Before Taking Acetaminophen?
There are numerous essential things that you must look for, not only before taking acetaminophen but also before taking all the other medications. Hence, let us have a look on some of the important things that you must check and keep in mind before taking the dose of acetaminophen. Before taking the dose of acetaminophen, assure yourself that you are not allergic to it, or some of the other tablets that contain acetaminophen or APAP in them. These other tablets may come with the different brand names and hence, it is essential to look for whether they contain acetaminophen. Moreover, if you have a history of liver related diseases or consume alcohol on a regular basis, inform the doctor about the same, if he is advising the dose of acetaminophen.
Not only normal liver diseases, if you are alcoholic from longer times and have suffered from the alcoholic liver disease, known as cirrhosis, you cannot at all take the acetaminophen for any cure inside your body.
If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant soon, tell your doctor or the healthcare professional about the same. Never go for acetaminophen without asking your doctor. However, if it is urgent and have no other option except taking the dose acetaminophen, consult your doctor or the healthcare professional.
If you have a child and are breastfeeding him or her, you are not allowed to take the tiniest dose of acetaminophen. As it is clinically proved that the acetaminophen can be transferred to the breast milk and hence, can be dangerous for your child, if he or she is in nursing condition. There are strict instructions that you cannot give the dose of acetaminophen to a child who is less than two years old. However, if there is an emergency, and the dose acetaminophen is the only option, it is recommended that you consult your doctor or the healthcare professional about the same. As there are numerous substitutes, that are available and do not contain the acetaminophen or APAP inside them.
What Is The Correct Way To Take Acetaminophen?
The procedure of taking consuming a medication varies from medicine to medicine. Hence, when it comes to the question of consuming acetaminophen, there are a few strict rules and procedures that you need to follow. But, before that, keep in mind that you do not take more or less than the recommended dose of acetaminophen. Doing so may cause severe fatal conditions that may affect you and your body in negative ways.
If you are going for the liquid form or suspension of acetaminophen, make sure that you measure the dose properly, without any margin of error. There are many measuring devices available in the market, which you can easily find in some pharmacist shop or even can ask your doctor or the healthcare professional. A few of the dose measuring devices that can be used in such cases include the dose-measuring spoon or the medicine cup. Do not go for the regular tablespoon for measuring the dose of any medicine, as they are not labeled with the necessary markings required to measure the dose. In this way, you will go for the wrong measure of the dose that can be too dangerous for you and your body and can bring many complications.
In case of children, if it is a compulsion for you to give acetaminophen to them, there comes the pediatric form of the acetaminophen, which you can go for. However, always remember while giving the dose to your children, to use the specially designed dropper or the oral syringe that comes with the medication. Before giving the medicine to your child, have a careful look to all the recommended dosing directions, mentioned on the label of medication.
There is one more form, in which the acetaminophen is available for you. It is the chewable form of the same tablet. If you want, you can go for the chewable form of tablet. It works same as the solid and liquid form of the acetaminophen. However, there are a few things you need to keep in mind if you are going for the chewable form of acetaminophen. It is to chew the tablets completely and thoroughly and then only swallow them inside your body. If you swallow the tablet without chewing it properly, it may lead to some negative circumstances and can be dangerous for your body.
Moreover, you can also have the effervescent granules of the acetaminophen. If you are going for it, keep in mind that you follow the correct procedure of having it. The correct procedure includes the pouring the one complete packet of granules into the water, around four ounces in quantity, and stir it properly. Once you are assured that all the granules have mixed completely, drink it right away. Once done, pour the water again and drink it again to make sure that all the advisable dose has gone inside your body.
Acetaminophen & Its Side Effects
All the medications have one or more side effects; it is also the case with the acetaminophen. So, let us have a brief look into the numerous side effects of acetaminophen that you may experience. There are primarily two categories of side effects; you may experience. One is the rare and unusual conditions; other is the overdosing side effects. Let’s look into both of them.
Some of the rare and unusual side effects include:
Bloody and cloudy kind of urine
Some pinpointed spots all over your skin and the color of skin changes to red
You may experience pain in your lower back or at the side of the body, frequency of which may vary from sharp to sever.
You may also feel feverish, that can or cannot include the chills.