Common Medications

Common (non prescription) Medications You May Use

Motrin/Advil

Use for inflammation from injuries, headaches, fevers, muscle aches and pains.

Both Motrin and Advil are also called Ibuprofen. Ibuprofen is used as a pain reliever, an anti-inflammatory, and a fever reducer. To obtain Ibuprofen you do not need a prescription written by your doctor, thus categorizing it as an “over the counter” medication.

When you experience pain, for example when you bang your shin, cells in this area are damaged. The injured cells from your bruised shin start to release a chemical called prostaglandin. Prostaglandin is responsible for inducing fever (elevating body temperature) and helps the brain recognize pain. Special pain nerves in your body recognize this chemical and send signals to your brain to interpret this as pain. Ibuprofen works to prevent your injured cells from releasing the prostaglandin, therefore disrupting the pain sensation and reducing your fever.

Ibuprofen can also work as an anti-inflammatory medication and is a stronger pain reliever than tylenol. Sometimes ibuprofen can be irritating to the stomach.

Usually the amount of ibuprofen you can take safely is based on how much you weigh. If you are ever unsure unsure of the appropriate dose for any over the counter medication, you can call our office at any time and we can help!

Tylenol

Use for headaches, minor aches and pains, fever.

Tylenol is also known as Acetaminophen and is used as a pain reliever and fever reducer. To obtain tylenol you do not need a prescription written by your doctor, thus categorizing it as an “over the counter” medication.

When you experience pain, for example when you bang your shin, cells in this area are damaged. The injured cells from your bruised shin start to release a chemical called prostaglandin. Prostaglandin is responsible for inducing fever (elevating body temperature) and helps the brain recognize pain. Special pain nerves in your body recognize this chemical and send signals to your brain to interpret this as pain. Tylenol works to disrupt the enzymes that contribute to producing the prostaglandin. With the decrease of prostaglandin production, your brain has a hard time interpreting and processing the pain signals, thus reducing or eliminating your pain and reducing your body temperature.

Tylenol is not as strong of a pain reliever as ibuprofen, however it is less harsh on the stomach.

Usually the amount of Tylenol you can take safely is based on how much you weigh.

Benadryl

Use for mild allergic reactions, allergy symptoms.

The medical name for Benadryl is Diphenhydramine, which is an antihistamine medication. An antihistamine is a medication used to suppress the effects of a histamine (chemical causing an allergic response) in the body and decreases mild allergic reactions. It decreases the allergy symptoms of sneezing, watery eyes, itching, hives, runny nose, and swelling. However, when taken, Benadryl can cause the person to become very drowsy.

Benadryl dosing is usually based on how much you weigh

Is a Generic Drug the same as a Brand Name drug?

Yes.

By law, generic medications have exactly the same active ingredient and dosing as their brand name counterpart medication. They are essentially a copy of the brand name version. They are for the same intended use in your body and cause the same effects as the brand medication. However, they tend to be much cheaper than brand name drugs.

Take Tylenol for example. Tylenol was marketed as a new drug in 1955 as a prescription pain reliever for children containing acetaminophen. Usually when a new drug is introduced and developed there is a patent applied to that drug. A patent protects this drug from being reproduced in any way by a different company, preventing generics from being sold. Usually a patent expires 17-20 years from its start date. So 17 years or so after the patent for Tylenol expired, other companies were allowed to produce this drug under a different name.

The FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) requires that generic drugs be as safe and effective as brand-name drugs. The only different component about these generic drugs is the name and price.

Generic drugs may be cheaper than original brand name medications for two reasons…

  1. The brand name company has spent a large amount of money on all of the research, development, testing, and marketing on the drug. This really is the greatest expense in producing and marketing a drug. Generic companies aren’t bothered with these expenses.
  2. Numerous companies are now competing with each other to sell this drug on the market, demanding competitive prices.