Can You Take Tylenol On An Empty Stomach? | Drug Life

Can You Take Tylenol On An Empty Stomach?

Pain relievers are heavenly when we’re suffering, may it be headaches, body aches, or simple fever, taking medication is a must. Tylenol is the same heaven-sent drug that provides relief for many symptoms, starting from our toothaches to backaches! But I’m sure you might have heard people on quora asking questions like- “Can you take Tylenol on an empty stomach?” Let’s see what our health wizards have to say about that!

Many people are confused about Tylenol, Paracetamol, and acetaminophen. But do you know that these three are SAME! The chemical name of all these is C8H9NO2. Hence clarifying our doubts about these pain relievers!

Tylenol is prescribed by your physician to treat pain caused by menstruation, fever, or simply as a pain reliever. As Tylenol is not harmful to the stomach and does not cause gastritis, it can be taken on an empty stomach. It doesn’t matter if you have eaten or not, Tylenol can be taken either way. But it is always advisable that you eat something before taking the medication as it dissolves better that way! There are many other factors that you need to keep in mind before taking Tylenol! Let’s see!

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Doctors always advise us not to take medications unnecessarily or only if the pain is unbearable! Have you ever wondered why? 

Also Read: 7 Best Medical Apps for iOS in 2021 To Monitor Health!

All About Tylenol: Can You Take Tylenol On An Empty Stomach?

Can You Take Tylenol On An Empty Stomach?

Pain or discomfort of any kind can severely impact our productivity. Almost 20.4% of the American population suffers from chronic pain and that is when pain relievers come into action!

Tylenol or acetaminophen is an Over The Counter (OTC) medicine commonly prescribed for treating mild headaches and fever. It’s commonly taken as a pain reliever to cure body aches, toothaches, period cramps, stomach aches, etc. This drug is available in various forms like:  

  • Tablet
  • Capsule
  • Tablet, Extended Release
  • Tablet, Disintegrating
  • Capsule, Liquid Filled.
  • Powder.
  • Solution.
  • Tablet, Chewable.
  • Suppository.
  • Liquid.
  • Elixir.
  • Suspension

You can take this medication as prescribed by your physician. But it is strictly advised that you do not take more than 4000mg of Tylenol within 24 hours. This time period is very important because like any other pain reliever, this drug also has side effects. If taken more than necessary or more often, Tylenol can damage your liver!

However, as compared to any other pain reliever, Tylenol has various good factors, especially for your stomach! This drug does not cause harm to your stomach lining even if you haven’t eaten anything! Tylenol does not cause gastritis as many other pain relievers like ibuprofen (Advil) do! This means, YES! You can take Tylenol on an empty stomach and it won’t cause you any harm!

Taking Tylenol on an empty stomach can even increase the efficiency of the drug because there’s no dilution in this case. Digestive enzymes will work solely on the absorption of the drug rather than food which will aid your process of pain alleviation. But this can be pretty harsh for your stomach. 

Should Tylenol Be Taken With Food?

tylenol on empty stomach

Although Tylenol on an empty stomach would not cause you any serious harm like the Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) but it is always good to be on the safer side! Unlike Ibuprofen, Tylenol will not cause stomach bleeding but it doesn’t mean that you have to be carefree while taking this drug!

If you are diabetic or have some history of illness, then you should disclose this information to your physician. Chances are that he will refrain from prescribing Tylenol to you! This drug causes severe damage to your liver and causes cirrhosis, fatty liver disease, or simply, liver failure! Thus don’t you think disclosing all the information is more necessary than having an organ failure? 

Can I Take Tylenol Without Food?

tylenol without food
Source: iStock

If you’re young and healthy, then taking Tylenol on an empty stomach will not cause you any harm as long as you monitor your dosage (not exceeding 4000mg in 24hrs). It is important to note that the adult dosage of Tylenol and that kids vary! So you can’t experiment with drugs yourself and should always consult your doctor before taking them.

Also, it is necessary to note that taking more than one medicine that has acetaminophen is harmful to your body! This is due to the fact that more than one kind of acetaminophen can imbalance your prescribed dosage. It may lead to a case where you are taking more of the necessary dosage, that is 4000mg! So checking your medicines before taking them is always advisable!

Also Read: Stay Healthy: Get a Full Night’s Sleep

Reported Side-Effects Of Tylenol

tylenol side-effects

Some people are simply allergic to Tylenol while some develop some of these symptoms because of over-dosage. However, it is important to note that not all people experience side-effects of Tylenol and thus need not worry!

  • Rash
  • Itchiness
  • Trouble while breathing
  • Headache
  • Dark-colored urine
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Clay-colored stool
  • Loss of appetite
  • Itching
  • Jaundice
  • Dizziness 

It is important to visit your doctor if you experience severe symptoms like swelling (of the throat, face, or tongue), have trouble breathing, feel dizzy, and get serious rashes over your body.

How Long Does It Take For Tylenol To Start Working?

How Long Does It Take For Tylenol To Start Working?

How fast Tylenol shows its results depends on the composition, formulation, and the prescribed dosage of the drug. For the drug to work properly, it first needs to fully absorb into your bloodstream. Then and only then will you see any effect of the drug. Usually, Tylenol takes a longer time to reduce fever than pain. Below is the list of types of Tylenol and the time taken by it to become effective!

Tylenol DosageTime taken by it to show effective results
Oral Tylenol liquid, Orally disintegrating tablets20 minutes 
Extended-release tablets, Oral Tablets30-45 minutes
Intravenous acetaminophen5-10 minutes

If 2-3 hours have already passed from the time you took Tylenol, and it still hasn’t shown any desirable pain or fever-reducing effects, then you should contact your doctor. There are chances that he will prescribe you a different dosage and may even change your medication altogether. 

One thing to note here is that taking Tylenol on a full stomach will take considerably more time to show effective results. This can be for 2 hours. Tylenol taken on an empty stomach works more efficiently but it is always advisable that you eat something before or while taking it. 

Tylenol And Its Prescribed Dosage

Source: The NYT

As Tylenol can cause serious harm to your liver, it is always advisable that you monitor your Tylenol intake. You do that by checking the label of your medicines to avoid accidental overdose. Below is the table that can help you to monitor your Tylenol intake. Take a look at how much Tylenol you should and should not take in a period of 24 hours. 

Tylenol Dosage For Adults

tylenol adult dosage

Dosage Of Tylenol →Description ↓
Tylenol 325 mgTylenol 500 mgTylenol 650 mg extended-release
Pills at a time1 or 21 or 21 or 2
How often should you take them?Every 4 to 6 hoursEvery 4 to 6 hoursEvery 8 hours
The safest maximum dose for a day8 pills6 pills4 pills
You should not consume more than this12 pills (3900 mg)8 pills (4000 mg)6 pills (3900 mg)

Also Read: 5 Most Important Ingredients For A Healthy Lifestyle!!

Tylenol Dosage For Kids

tylenol kids dosage

Tylenol can be prescribed to your kids for fever or some minor aches. But how much you should give to your kid depends on his weight! If you don’t know how much your child weighs, then you can simply give him the medicine according to his age.

Age Of The Kid Type Of Tylenol ↓
Under 2 year2-3 years4-5 years6-8 years9-10 years11 years
Infants’ Tylenol Oral Suspension (Acetaminophen 160 mg in 5ml)Consult your doctor 5 ml
Children’s Tylenol Oral Suspension (Acetaminophen 160 mg in 5ml)Consult your doctor5ml7.5ml10ml12.5ml15ml
Children’ Tylenol Chewables (Acetaminophen 160 mg)Consult your doctor1 tab.1.5 tab.2 tab.2.5 tab3 tab.
Children’s Tylenol Dissolve Packs (Acetaminophen 160 mg)Not recommended/ do not useNot recommended/ do not useNot recommended/ do not use2 powders2 powders3 powders

Keep In Mind

  • Do not give this medicine to your kid if he/she is allergic to acetaminophen.
  • While using these medicines, do not use any other that has acetaminophen as it will lead to overdose.
  • Read the product labels carefully before giving the medicine to your kid.
  • DO NOT give more than 5 doses in 24 hours. If the symptoms last, make sure to repeat the dose every 4 hours.


tylenol on empty stomach

Tylenol is the most prescribed OTC pain reliever in America and all over the world! The drug can show effects in 45 minutes if taken on an empty stomach but the dosage should be monitored. If the dosage of Tylenol increases by more than 4000 mg in 24 hours, then it can be harmful to your body. Also, as it causes damage to your liver, you should make sure not to take it too often and only if the pain is too much to bear!

Also Read: List of Drugs Used To Treat Coronavirus| Covid-19 Vaccine Recent Updates


Can Tylenol be taken on an empty stomach?

YES! Tylenol can be taken on an empty stomach as it does not cause any harm to your stomach lining. But it is always advisable that you eat something before taking it as some people have reported side effects to the drug. 

Tylenol Or Ibuprofen? What Is A Better Choice?

Tylenol and ibuprofen are both pain relievers but Tylenol is always said to be a better choice between the two. Ibuprofen is an NSAID and can cause damage to your stomach lining if taken without food. Whereas, Tylenol can be taken on an empty stomach!

Featured Image Source: Thailand Medical News

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