Ibuprofen and paracetamol: can you have a medicine allergy?

medicine allergy

Ibuprofen and paracetamol: can you have a medicine allergy?

We all have that draw or cupboard in the house – you know the one. It’s where we keep our medicine. And one handy tool we always stay stocked up on is the painkiller. It’s easy to reach for when we’ve got a pounding headache or to soothe an injury. You might also keep them in more convenient places, like in your handbag or at your work desk.

But they’re not for everyone. Some people can’t swallow them, while others just don’t like the taste. Then there are some who can’t have them at all because they’re allergic. Yes, you have a medicine allergy – let’s take a look at what that means.

What are medicine allergies?

Not everyone will react the same way to medication. What might be fine for you someone else might react to. But this doesn’t mean all reactions are from allergies. In fact, only about 5 to 10% of reactions to medicine are because of an allergy.

So sometimes it’s just an adverse reaction – a side effect. This is different from an allergy, which is caused by your immune system’s response to the medicine. It’s your body seeing something harmless as a threat. To complicate it further, you might not have an allergic reaction the first time you take it. Sometimes you develop allergies later in life or, as can happen with medicine, your body doesn’t know how to react to it until the second time you take it. If you’re ever unsure, you need to talk to an allergy specialist about it.

What are the symptoms?

Allergies to paracetamol and ibuprofen are rare. But they’re still possible. As with all allergies, their effects range from mildly inconvenient to life-threatening.

At the more mild end of the scale, you have common skin reactions, such as rashes, peeling, or swelling. In some cases, it may lead to mouth ulcers. Then there are more alarming symptoms, such as asthma attacks or a general struggle to breathe. And in the worst-case scenarios, it can cause anaphylaxis, which can lead to death.

The difficulty with medicine allergies is figuring out what is a side effect and what is a genuine allergic reaction. If you ever experience abnormal problems as a result of taking medication, you should always talk to your doctor and find the cause.

Book an appointment today with Allergy Clinic London to find out if you have any serious allergies. Call us today on 02031 433 449.

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