Naproxen sodium (over-the-counter)


Drug Class:

NSAIDs (Traditional NSAID)

Brand Names




220 mg every 8 to 12 hours as needed.

Dosages for children: The dosages listed above are those typically prescribed for adults aged 18-65. Dosages for children can vary. Ask your doctor about the appropriate dosage for your child.

Potential Side Effects


Abdominal cramps, pain or discomfort; diarrhea; dizziness; drowsiness; gastrointestinal bleeding; headache; heartburn; high blood pressure; nausea or vomiting; peptic ulcer; swelling of feet; rash; ringing in the ears.

Special Instructions

  • For acute pain, use for the shortest time possible to achieve treatment goals, up to 10 days.
  • Do not take with other prescription or over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
  • Take at the same time every day.
  • Take with food or an antacid.
  • Do not take for more than 10 days for pain or more than 3 days for fever unless directed by a doctor.

Be Aware

  • Using ibuprofen or naproxen with low-dose aspirin may interfere with aspirin’s ability to help prevent heart attacks.
  • Before taking any type of NSAID, tell your doctor if you drink alcohol or take blood thinners (including warfarin), ACE inhibitors, lithium or furosemide. Also report any sensitivity or allergy to aspirin or similar drugs. All non-aspirin NSAIDs may cause an increased risk of serious blood clots, heart attack and stroke, which can be fatal. This risk can occur as early as the first weeks using an NSAID and increases with dose and duration of use. Patients who have or who are at risk for cardiovascular disease are at greater risk for these complications than someone without cardiovascular disease or its risk factors. Treatment with NSAIDs following a first heart attack increases the risk of death in the first year after the heart attack (compared to not using NSAIDs after a first heart attack). NSAID use increases the risk of heart failure. NSAIDs should not be used for pain if you have had (or are about to have) coronary bypass surgery. Do not take NSAIDs late in pregnancy.

The Arthritis Today Drug Guide is meant for education – not self-medicating. Arthritis Today, the Arthritis Foundation and the Drug Guide Medical Review Panel do not endorse any products mentioned in this guide. While we endeavor to keep the information up to date, we make no representations or warranties about the completeness of the information provided.

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