Advertisement

Should I take a painkiller for a headache?

You should avoid taking narcotics or painkillers for headaches because these can cause worsening headaches or rebound headaches, which are an increase in frequency of headaches. Acetaminophen, Ibuprofen or Naproxen may be helpful in the short term, but should not be taken regularly or with liver or kidney disease. If you need these types of medications more than nine times in a given month, you should consult with a physician, as there are other options to help control headaches.
In general, analgesic medications, such as aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen, are poor choices for treating chronic tension-type headaches (CTTH). In fact, these medications may lead to medication-overuse headaches. For particularly painful headache flare-ups, several analgesic doses per week may be appropriately used to provide welcome pain relief.

Continue Learning about Headache

Migraine: More Than a Headache
Migraine: More Than a Headache
Not your run-of-the-mill headache by any means, a migraine can be downright debilitating. Characterized by intense throbbing pain on one side of the h...
Read More
What causes headaches?
RealAgeRealAge
The hurt in headache pain emanates from a network of nerves that covers the scalp and from particula...
More Answers
What Your Headache Is Telling You
What Your Headache Is Telling YouWhat Your Headache Is Telling YouWhat Your Headache Is Telling YouWhat Your Headache Is Telling You
Chocolate, wine or sex could be to blame for your headaches.
Start Slideshow
What Types of Medication Might be Prescribed for Migraine?
What Types of Medication Might be Prescribed for Migraine?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.