4 Over-The-Counter Medicines That Can Kill You

Every medicine we put in our bodies can be harmful in some way. While trying to treat one ailment,

4 Over-The-Counter Medicines That Can Kill You
Every medicine we put in our bodies can be harmful in some way. While trying to treat one ailment, there can be side effects that cause another. Some over-the-counter medicines can even kill you when not used properly. While it is important to read the labels before taking any medication, it is possible to miss life-saving information. Here are some over-the-counter medications that can be fatal and treatment options if you or a loved one is suffering from addiction of OTC medicines.


Acetaminophen is commonly found in pain relievers and fever reducers like Tylenol. It is the most common over-the-counter medicine found in overdoses and kills hundreds of people each year. It can also cause liver damage if it is not taken as directed. Be sure to follow the dosage recommendations on the package to stay safe.


NSAIDs are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs that are used for conditions like arthritis, pain, and inflammation. Commonly used NSAIDs are ibuprofen and Aspirin, and are also used for preventing blood clotting and lowering fevers. If not used as directed, consequences such as an increased risk of heart attack and stroke are possible. Since NSAIDs can prevent blood from clotting, it can also lead to fatal bleeding. Using both ibuprofen and acetaminophen at the same time can also be fatal, so avoid combining them.


Commonly found in cough medicines, dextromethorphan is an ingredient in medications that can kill you. When taken in high doses, a side effect is death. Taking cough medicine like Robitussin, Tylenol, and Mucinex DM, can help suppress your symptoms of being sick, so that you can get some rest or get through your day. Addicts also abuse dextromethorphan by using it in powder or pill form to get high, which is causing an increase in overdoses. It is important to only use dextromethorphan as directed on the packaging to avoid terrible consequences.


Lidocaine is a numbing medication that can block pain signals. It is commonly used on the skin for aches and pains, itchy insect bites or poison ivy, and can be fatal if used incorrectly. The side effects of using this OTC medication are trouble breathing, irregular heartbeat, and seizures. These conditions can lead the patient into a coma and eventually death. Use this medication only as directed.

Treatment Options

Those with an addiction can seek out the help from luxury drug rehabs or detox centers to battle their addiction. Medications are used to help those that are sick get better, and should not be abused. Unfortunately, it does happen. If you or a loved one is abusing OTC medications, it is important to seek help from a professional in your area before it is too late.

Final Words

When taking a medication, make sure to read all the instructions prior to ingesting it. Only use it as directed, and if you have any questions at all, contact your physician or local pharmacist. It is work taking the time to ask questions to avoid any irreversible side effects, especially death. 
Updated Date: 25 January 2018, 01:30

Recep Karaca

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