Can Tylenol Cause Constipation?

You’ve definitely reached for a box of Tylenol to relieve some of your agony if you’ve ever experienced aching muscles after working out or a migraine from a hard day at the office. 

You might have noticed that you felt a little more stopped up than usual thereafter.

Can Tylenol Cause Constipation

A common pain medication called Tylenol is used to treat illnesses like headaches, body aches, period pain, fevers, colds, and the flu. Acetaminophen is sold under the brand name Tylenol.

Tylenol includes a number of potential adverse effects, similar to many drugs. Constipation is a frequently reported adverse effect.

Constipation is the inability to pass a bowel movement, a decrease in bowel movement frequency, or the difficulty and pain that comes with passing a bowel movement.

Do you actually have constipation because of Tylenol? If so, how might it be fixed? This article will examine if Tylenol induces constipation, how to treat constipation brought on by Tylenol, and any negative side effects.

Tylenol: What Is It?

Acetaminophen, usually referred to as Tylenol, is an over-the-counter analgesic and fever reducer. It is frequently used to relieve light to moderate discomfort and to assist reduce fever while you are ill. 

Since acetaminophen raises the body’s pain threshold rather than reducing pain, you experience its effects less.

Acetaminophen is not a member of the class of medications known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines, in contrast to some of the other painkillers available on the market, such as Ibuprofen, Aspirin, and Naproxen (NSAID). 

NSAIDs and acetaminophen are frequently administered in combination to relieve pain and lower a particularly uncomfortable temperature.

Can Tylenol Make You Constipated?

According to Harvard Medical School, the majority of people tolerate acetaminophen, the substance that makes up Tylenol, very well. Most people don’t suffer any adverse effects when taking Tylenol in the dosage that doctors advise.

Tylenol, however, can occasionally have a range of adverse effects, including constipation. According to a study from 2007, the majority of persons who suffer constipation after using Tylenol do so after consuming 7 or more tablets in a single week.

There are numerous variations of Tylenol, and some of them certainly cause constipation (see also “Can Antibiotics Cause Constipation?“) more frequently than others. 

In order to help people sleep while experiencing pain or a fever, Tylenol PM, for instance, contains the diphenhydramine component, which is well recognized for producing constipation.

If you suffer from chronic pain, acetaminophen may be a medication you frequently take. However, there is a higher risk of constipation with greater usage of over-the-counter painkillers.

Acetaminophen can be problematic for patients who already have gastrointestinal problems, such as irritable bowel syndrome. 

Acetaminophen may be to blame if you’ve been using more painkillers than usual and your bowel movements seem to be more challenging than usual.

Other Potential Side Effects Of Tylenol

Although Tylenol doesn’t have a long list of adverse effects and is typically well tolerated, some of the most frequent ones are constipation, nausea, headaches, and stomach discomfort.

It is occasionally required to take Tylenol to treat headaches, soothe muscle aches, and lower fever; some people might need to take Tylenol more frequently.

Tylenol may occasionally induce allergic reactions. Sneezing, itchy eyes, swelling of the lips are just a few symptoms of an allergic reaction. Other symptoms include trouble breathing or losing consciousness.

You should consult a doctor right away if you experience even a minor allergic response. If you experience a severe allergic response or anaphylaxis, call for emergency medical help right away.

Stomach pains and nausea are the hallmarks of a Tylenol overdose, which soon progresses to liver damage, liver failure, and occasionally even death. Seek immediate medical help if you believe you overdosed on Tylenol and are exhibiting any of these overdose symptoms.

How To Treat Constipation Caused By Tylenol

There are numerous ways to treat constipation because it can be brought on by a variety of circumstances. Keep reading to find out how to treat constipation induced by medicine.

1. Boost Your Fiber Intake

When you realize that you are experiencing constipation more frequently, the very first thing you should do is up your fiber intake. 

Although it won’t make you instantly void, this will assist maintain your system regularity in the long run. Include more forms of dietary fiber in your diet, such as whole grains, fresh fruits, and vegetables.

2. Take A Fiber Supplement

There are fiber supplements available if you’re still having trouble getting sufficient fiber in your meals through traditional means. 

For instance, ColonBroom is a fiber supplement that you can have twice daily before meals to promote metabolism, reduce constipation, and give you more energy.

3. Keep Hydrated

Again, this won’t make you instantly void, but it will assure that you do so less frequently, particularly if you’re taking Tylenol. Make sure you’re drinking the correct amount of water each day because your body requires it to maintain the digestive system functioning properly.

4. Utilize A Stool Softener

Stool softeners should be your first choice if it has been several days since your last bowel movement. Stool softeners make it easier for your stools to travel throughout your digestive system by assisting them in absorbing more water.

5. Try A Laxative

It could be time to get out the heavy guns if you’re having trouble using the restroom and you haven’t been for a while.  

A laxative stimulates the walls of your intestines, which can accelerate things. Since laxatives may interact with other medications, be sure to consult your physician.

6. Keep Moving

Depending on how often you need to use painkillers, increasing your exercise may not be the best option for you. However, it is a fantastic suggestion for those who have constipation.

Exercise benefits your entire health and keeps the body functioning properly – it will also help keep things moving around your digestive system which is good news for those who are stopped up. 

Can Tylenol Cause Constipation

7. Make Sure You Use The Bathroom Regularly

Letting your body perform its natural functions is crucial for treating persistent constipation. Doctors advise taking breaks from your day to give your body the time it needs. 

However, keep in mind that excessive time spent on the toilet might place undue strain on your urethra, leading to hemorrhoids and other problems.

What If Your Constipation Doesn’t Improve?

Being stopped up is difficult enough without having to cope with chronic discomfort and taking over-the-counter medications. One of the potential negative effects of frequent usage of over-the-counter painkillers is constipation (see also “Is There A Potential Link Between Constipation And Chest Pain?“).

In addition to these additional health problems, constipation can also result in a number of well-known adverse effects, including headaches, nausea, and back discomfort.

If you experience severe or chronic constipation, prescription drugs can be the best option. Your healthcare practitioner can assess your symptoms to decide if a specific prescribed medication to treat your constipation is the best course of action for you. 

Avoid taking any over-the-counter pain reliever and seek medical attention right away if you have severe stomach pain, constipation that causes bloating, or another medical emergency. Your doctor is best qualified to diagnose you and recommend a course of action.

Types Of Prescription Medications For Constipation

If over-the-counter remedies are insufficient, there are numerous prescription medications available that function in various ways. Determine which kind is ideal to try for your circumstance in collaboration with your doctor.

Lactulose: This osmotic medication softens and loosens the stools by luring water into the intestine. Gas, diarrhea, stomach pain, and stomach cramps are some of the side effects.

Linaclotide: You should take one capsule of linaclotide each day. Irritable bowel disease with constipation and chronic constipation are also conditions it is used to treat (IBS-C). 

By allowing stools to pass more readily and encouraging frequent bowel movements, linaclotide may help you feel less constipated. The most typical adverse reaction is diarrhea. In the event that other therapies fail, doctors might advise it.

Lubiprostone: If you suffer from persistent constipation including constipation caused by opioids, your doctor may recommend lubiprostone. It is also utilized to treat IBS-C in women, a condition where constipation is the primary symptom. 

By adding more water to the feces, the medication makes it softer and easier to pass. This medication should be taken twice a day with food. Headache, nauseousness, diarrhea, abdominal discomfort, and vomiting are a few potential adverse effects.

Plecanatide: Plecanatide is a pill that needs to be taken once per day. It aids in the production of fluids by your body in the intestines, which facilitates stool transit. If your previous treatments aren’t working, your doctor might recommend it. 

The medication is specifically designed for those with IBS-C and chronic idiopathic constipation (CIC). One of the potential negative effects is diarrhea.

Polyethylene glycol: Water is added to the powdered polyethylene glycol. It helps you go by putting a large amount of water in your colon when you drink it. 

Vomiting, bloating, cramps, and nausea are examples of frequent adverse effects. Inform your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms: bloody or coffee-ground-looking vomit, a racing heart, breathlessness, or severe stomach pains.

Prucalopride: Take one pill of prucalopride each day. To get your stool moving through your bowels, it aids colon movement. 

Additionally, this medication is specifically designed to treat chronic constipation, which is persistent constipation for which there is no known explanation. 

Headache, stomach pain, nauseousness, diarrhea, sickness, dizziness, and exhaustion are typical adverse effects. Additionally, it may significantly alter your mood and behavior at times. Get in touch with your doctor immediately if this occurs.

Final Thoughts

Even while Tylenol is typically well accepted by the majority of people, one of its most frequent adverse effects is a reduction in the capacity for regular bowel movements. 

All medications have potential side effects, but being unable to use the restroom is among the most distressing.

You may require some of the knowledge we discussed above if you experience this specific side effect in order to maintain your body’s regularity. 

You may ensure that you remain regular and avoid constipation in the foreseeable by increasing your consumption of fiber and water.

Of course, you must always seek medical attention from your doctor if you’re still having trouble after several days with no improvement. Another medication can be prescribed to treat your constipation, depending on your requirement for pain relief.

Clark Ruffington
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