Can you take Tylenol on an empty stomach

Can you take Tylenol on an empty stomach?

The most widely used analgesic in the US is Tylenol, often known as acetaminophen (or APAP). Tylenol (or acetaminophen) is a popular and effective option for relieving headaches and other common aches and pains. In reality, most people with arthritis and other chronic pain disorders can take it on a long-term basis.

In general, medication is usually taken with food, or in other words, medicine should not be taken on an empty stomach. However, this does not apply to all medications. In this article, you will get to know if Tylenol falls under this exception.


A common over-the-counter (OTC) analgesic (pain reliever) and antipyretic medication is acetaminophen, popularly known as Tylenol (fever reducer). As the TYLENOL Elixir for children, Tylenol was developed in 1955 and was the first aspirin-free pain treatment in history.

Numerous conditions are treated with Tylenol, including headaches, menstrual cramps, toothaches, back pain, osteoarthritis, chronic pain, and aches and pains brought on by the common cold and flu. Acetaminophen can also be administered to lower the temperature.

How does Tylenol function?

Acetaminophen, the main ingredient in Tylenol, lowers body temperature and eases pain. By raising the total pain threshold of your body, acetaminophen lessens pain and helps you feel less uncomfortable.

The medication helps your body release excess heat and lowers fevers by acting on the part of the brain that regulates body temperature.

What Is the Shelf Life of Tylenol?

The effects of Tylenol last in the body for four to eight hours on average. They remain in the body for three to six hours on average.

As directed by a doctor or on the label, administer the medication orally or as directed by a tablet. Always use Tylenol at the recommended dosages. Before taking a dose if you’re taking it as a suspension, thoroughly shake the medication (like we normally do).

Utilize a measuring spoon or medicine cup to measure the medication. If you intend to give a child a pill form of Tylenol, make sure to verify the recommended prescription for this age range. If you decide on liquid form, be sure you’re using an oral syringe or measuring dropper.

What Is Treatable by Tylenol?

As you can see from the list above, Tylenol can be taken orally to treat the following aches and pains: backache, toothache, fever, head pain, muscle pain, painful periods, and pain from arthritis.

What dosage of Tylenol should I take?

It’s essential to adhere to Tylenol’s prescribed dose guidelines extremely closely due to the possibility of serious liver damage and a potentially fatal overdose. Tylenol is a very safe medication when used as directed and by those who do not have liver issues, but if used incorrectly, it has the potential to be quite damaging.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has said that the maximum daily dose of Tylenol for adults is 4,000 mg, which includes any additional acetaminophen-containing drugs the patient may be taking. The FDA recommends that adults take no more than 3,000 mg per day, with no more than 650 mg every six hours as needed.

Tylenol’s parent company, Johnson & Johnson, has reduced the maximum daily dose for extra strength Tylenol, which contains 500 mg of acetaminophen, to 3,000 mg, or six pills per day, from a previous maximum daily dose of 4,000 mg, or eight pills per day, due to concerns and reports of liver damage associated with high acetaminophen dosage.

If you miss a Tylenol dose, only take it if your next planned dose is still several hours away. To make up for a missed dose, never take a double dose of Tylenol.

Can you take Tylenol on an empty stomach?

Yes, Tylenol can be taken on an empty stomach. It is not a rule to take Tylenol with or without food, it entirely depends on you. So, regardless of meals, Tylenol can be consumed. This is also clearly stated by the manufacturer of Tylenol on their website.

When taken on an empty stomach, Tylenol begins to work within 15 to 20 minutes. However, it will take between 30 and 60 minutes for Tylenol to start working if you ate a meal before taking it.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Things to avoid taking with Tylenol

While taking Tylenol, there are certain things you need to avoid. Avoid drinking alcohol at all costs because it increases the risk of liver damage. Second, ask your doctor or pharmacist for guidance before taking any drug for a cold, allergy, discomfort, or sleep.

Many combination medications contain acetaminophen, or APAP as it is shortened. Certain products can cause you to take too much acetaminophen when you take them together, which almost always has the potential to be lethal.

Additionally, always read the label when purchasing an OTC medication to determine whether it contains acetaminophen or APAP.

How Soon Should I Stop Taking Acetaminophen?

When necessary, Tylenol can be helpful, but occasionally the issue may be far more serious than the necessity for this medication.

  • When should you stop taking Tylenol?
  • more than three days’ worth of fever
  • After seven days of use, the pain still exists. The symptoms may continue or worsen.

How Should I Keep Tylenol?

Tylenol should always be kept at room temperature. It should be kept away from moisture, light, and heat in a secure location. For storing, a temperature range of 68 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal.

Does Tylenol have any side effects?

There are two categories of side effects that you may encounter when taking Tylenol: serious and common.

Constipation, headaches, nausea, and insomnia are common side effects; however, there are some serious side effects as well, such as the development of red or blistering skin, skin rashes, hives, itching, swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs; difficulty breathing or swallowing food; pain in the upper abdomen; loss of appetite; passing of dark urine; jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); sweating; and

After using Tylenol or Acetaminophen, if you experience any severe adverse effects, stop taking it immediately and see your doctor right once.


You can take Tylenol without food. Tylenol starts to work within 15 to 20 minutes of ingestion when taken on an empty stomach. If you ate a meal prior to taking Tylenol, it will take between 30 and 60 minutes for it to start working.


Michael Sarfo
Content Creator at Wapomu

Michael Sarfo is a graduate of the University of Ghana, Legon. He is a content creator for and a writer for Wapomu

Dr. Ehoneah Obed is a registered pharmacist and a member of the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana. He has a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and has experience working in a Tertiary hospital as well as various community pharmacies. He is also a software engineer interested in healthcare technologies.

His love for helping others motivates him to create content on an array of topics mostly relating to the health of people and also software engineering content.

He is knowledgeable in digital marketing, content marketing, and a host of other skills that make him versatile enough to uplift any team he joins.

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