Experts Say Beware of OTC Headache Meds - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/8/08

Experts Say Beware of OTC Headache Meds

Tension headaches respond to common over-the-counter medications like acetaminophen or ibuprofen.  However, don't fall into the trap of taking too much for your headache because that can backfire and lead to what's called a "rebound headache".  The National Headache Foundation says the overuse of over-the-counter pills as a leading cause of chronic daily headaches.

Dr. Susan Broner, M.D., says, "These have serious implications, and just because they're over-the-counter doesn't necessarily mean they're benign.  Frequent use, meaning two days per week or more on a regular basis, seems to affect brain chemistry, such that people start getting more and more frequent headaches".

Dr. Broner says that over-the-counter meds are fine for occasional use.  However, she says that if you find yourself buying the industrial-size bottles of pain relievers so that you'll be sure to have enough on hand, it's a good sign that you need to talk to your doctor about it.

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