Paracetamol – All you need to know about the most consumed medicine
First of all, what is paracetamol? Your guess is right! It is nothing but a legal drug that is usually taken in tablet form. Everyone in this world would have experienced fever at least once in their life. The most preferable pill/drug which is taken by people is paracetamol. People would suggest paracetamol for the reduction of fever to some extent even without consulting a doctor/medical specialist.
What is paracetamol?
Paracetamol is a medication to treat fever. It is the first-line treatment for people. It also acts as pain relief in many cases. It was first made in the era of 18th century and later on distributed over the US in the 50’s. It is considered to be WHO’s essential medicine. Its chemical formula is C8H9NO2. Its pain relief is only 37 minutes if it is taken by mouth. Or else it takes only 8 minutes if it is ingested intravenously. Now the most important question is that would have arose in everyone’s mind is, how does this work, and how does it help in reducing the fever?
How does a paracetamol work?
Scientists are still researching about how paracetamol exactly works. Fever is nothing but a rise in the temperature above the normal one. We have to reduce the fever since the biochemical processes of our body cannot function properly above the normal temperature. Thus, we have to consume a pill which is anti-pyretic (reduces fever) in nature. Here we use paracetamol. When you swallow the paracetamol, it reaches the tummy and gets dissolved and absorbed in the blood. It blocks/affects the chemical messengers (especially the production of prostaglandins) in the brain which help us to regulate the body temperature(the hypothalamic heat-regulating center) and also to relieve the pain that we have.
Paracetamol takes up to an hour to work. if there is no effect even after 6 hours it’s better to consult a physician. Each tablet contains maize starch, potassium sorbate, soluble starch, stearic acid, and purified talc in addition to 500 mg of paracetamol. It reduces fever by promoting heat loss through sweating and cutaneous vasodilation. Paracetamol is as effective as aspirin and ibuprofen but anyways it doesn’t help in reducing inflammation. Paracetamol is available in several brand names such as Calpol, Panadol, Hedex, Alvedon suppositories, etc., Paracetamol is available as suppositories which is widely used for children who find it difficult to swallow.
Paracetamol exerts its analgesic and antipyretic effects by inhibiting of prostaglandins. It has limited side effects and is a choice for reducing fever. Always leave 4 hours gap between the doses. This paracetamol can be taken for a long time if we follow the correct dosage. As too much of anything is good for nothing, if it is consumed in a large amount, it can lead to liver damage. It’s really too important to consult a doctor/physician about whether to consume paracetamol if you already have
- Had an allergic reaction
- Have liver or kidney problems
The paracetamol effects on children were unclear according to a study.
Unlike non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), it has minimal effect on the reduction of inflammation. Also, this paracetamol has no effect in the case of Dengue fever.
Even though this drug has a lot of benefits, it does have its own side effects! It is important that this drug is consumed within limits as too much of anything is good for nothinng!
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