09:26 AM

How Much Naproxen Is Safe to Take?

Theodore R. Fields, MD, FACP, rheumatologist at HSS explains what you need to know about taking naproxen  for pain relief. 

If naproxen is your go-to pain reliever for things like everyday muscle aches, headaches, arthritis pain, or period cramps, you might wonder how much of this medication you can safely take. You might also be curious about what could happen if you pop too many naproxen pills in your quest for pain relief.

In general, you don’t want to take more than 500 milligrams of naproxen twice a day (a daily total of 1,000 mg), said Dr. Fields.

It’s worth checking your medicine chest and talking to your doctor before you take naproxen, because this drug can interact with many other medications. One of the most important interactions is with other NSAIDs, like ibuprofen, says Dr. Fields. “Combining them increases the risk of excessive dosing and side effects,” he said.

Naproxen also doesn’t mix well with blood thinners . That’s because naproxen impairs the ability of tiny blood cells called platelets to clot, resulting in a blood thinning effect. Taking naproxen plus another blood thinner increases this effect and could cause excessive bleeding, explained Dr. Fields.

Also, if you’re taking medication to lower your blood pressure, naproxen may be a no-no: “Because naproxen can raise blood pressure, it can oppose the effects of medications you take to control high blood pressure,” Dr. Fields said. Check with your doctor before using naproxen if you’re on a blood pressure-lowering drug like an ACE inhibitor, angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB), or calcium channel blocker.

Read the full article at healthcentral.com.