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How to avoid rebound headache when taking pain meds for flu, viruses?

Hi--I'm just getting over a viral infection, and running into an issue I've had in the past. Is there a way to avoid/minimize suffering from rebound headaches when you've been mildly ill and taking something like tylenol or ibuprofen for pain relief/fever/etc.?

As we all know, sometimes flu, colds, or other viral infections come with symptoms such as muscle aches (can include headache, but let's leave that out for now), sore throat, or fever. Well, usually people take an OTC medication to reduce fever/sore throat/muscle pain, especially if it's keeping you from sleeping. (Or that's me.) Getting decent rest is important to recovery!

But what about when you're getting better, any tips on avoiding/reducing the problem of rebound headaches due to OTC pain med usage?

I asked my neurology office; they had no suggestions, other than sorry you've been ill, make sure to contact your primary care doctor as needed. (I was like, duh, I DID mention that in the e-mail, also that I was taking medication for sinusitis which had come on as a result of said virus.)

  1. This is a great question, . The biggest thing I can think of is using complimentary and alternative health approaches in addition to using OTC medicine. This might include drinking beverages that offer relief, such as tea or soups. Some teas are better with reducing congestion, pain, or sore throat. Check out this article for info on tea:

    You can also utilize hot/cold therapy, such as a heating pad or ice pack depending on your symptoms. Check out this article for info on that:

    Some people also find warm baths with Epsom salt to be beneficial for body aches if you have access to a tub.

    By including some of these things into your treatment, it may help reduce the amount of OTC medicine that you need to use. While it won't make all the symptoms go away, it might be more manageable.

    Hope that helps 😀.

    - Cody

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