Over-the-counter aspirin is accessible without a prescription. Headache relief, swelling reduction, and temperature lowering are examples of common uses. When used regularly, it helps those who are at high risk reduce their risk of cardiovascular events like a heart attack or stroke.
A nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication is an aspirin (NSAID). With higher doses, NSAIDs have the benefits of reducing fever, reducing inflammation, and relieving pain. They are not steroids, though. Although steroids frequently offer advantages similar to those of NSAIDs, they are not suitable for everyone and may cause unfavorable side effects.
Uses of Aspirin
Aspirin has a multitude of uses, including treating a variety of ailments, lowering the likelihood of heart attacks in patients at high risk, and reducing pain and swelling.
Pain and swelling
It can treat a variety of minor to major medical conditions, including headaches, the flu or a cold, sprains and strains, and both mild and moderate edema.
Preventing cardiovascular events
Daily low-dose aspirin use, however not safe for everyone, can reduce some people’s risk of cardiovascular events.
Treating coronary events
To stop more clot formation and cardiac tissue death during a heart attack, stroke, or other cardiovascular event, doctors may prescribe aspirin right away.
Is Aspirin Safe for Children?
For patients under the age of 18, It is often not advised. This is due to the potential danger of Reye’s syndrome, a severe illness that can develop following a viral infection like the flu, the common cold, or chicken pox. Death or a lasting brain injury can result from Reye’s syndrome.
If a child has Kawasaki disease or needs aspirin to avoid blood clots after heart surgery, a doctor may prescribe it to them under close care. Instead of aspirin, doctors typically advise using acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) at the proper dosages for children.
Risks and Precautions
Aspirin should only be taken if a doctor advises it for a patient with one of the following conditions:
- Bleeding conditions like hemophilia
- Uncontrolled hypertension
- Stomach or peptic ulcers
- A liver or renal condition
- Pregnant or breastfeeding women may use low-dose aspirin under a doctor’s supervision. High-dose aspirin is typically not advised by doctors during pregnancy. Avoid these medications if you have a known allergy to aspirin or any other NSAID, such as ibuprofen.
- This medicine is not given to patients who are experiencing a stroke as not all strokes are brought on by blood clots. It may occasionally exacerbate a stroke. Also, before taking it, anyone who consumes alcohol frequently or is getting any type of dental or surgical procedure should consult a doctor.
An interaction can occur when one medication reduces the effectiveness of another or when the combination is harmful. Many medications and aspirin can interact. A few of these are:
- Anti-inflammatory relievers
- Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and other antidepressants
Aspirin’s most typical adverse effects include:
- Gastrointestinal Discomfort
Less frequently, the following negative effects occur:
- Symptoms of asthma worsening
- Stomach Inflammation
- Stomach bleeding
- Moreover, it can cause very significant side effects like brain, stomach, or kidney failure. Hemorrhagic stroke is a rare adverse effect of using low-dose aspirin regularly.
The Bottom Line
A variety of health problems can be prevented and treated with aspirin, but anyone under the age of 18 should never use it without a doctor’s supervision. It is accessible without a prescription or over-the-counter. Always heed the warnings on the label or the advice of your doctor. For those who may be more inclined to experience negative consequences, this is especially important. Not everyone can safely use this medicine, especially when taken daily. Other NSAIDs like ibuprofen and acetaminophen are further alternatives for treating mild discomfort.