how long does it take for tylenol to work

What’s Tylenol? How long does it take for tylenol to work?

How is it that a small little pill can make such a big impact on our lives? From aches and pains to colds and fevers, Tylenol is as ubiquitous today as laying down with a hot rag was yesterday. Both can give us pain relief, but only one has allowed us to go about our day much more quickly. Why is this?

how long does it take for tylenol to work

Tylenol & History

Well, Tylenol is the brand name for an over-the-counter pain reliever that generic brands would actually call “Acetaminophen.” Tylenol’s active ingredient was first described in 1878 in the chemical literature of the time, and the word Tylenol originates from such literature – the letters that make up the word come from N-aceTYL-p-aminophENOL. With this in mind, it wasn’t until 1949 that advanced research techniques were able to confirm acetaminophen’s efficacy for fever reduction and pain relief. The Tylenol brand of acetaminophen, however, didn’t actually become Tylenol until 1955. During the spring of that year, the McNeil company introduced Tylenol Elixir as an alternative to aspirin (so that sensitive patients could have pain relief without the side effects of aspirin). It was a great success!

How long does it take for tylenol to work?

Your probably asking yourself : How long does it take for tylenol to work and you are right ! the average time for Tylenol to start working is 40 to 50 minutes. It is important to know how long does it take for tylenol to work before consuming it.

Tylenol Versus Ibuprofen

I get asked this question very often, which one is better, Ibuprofen? Tylenol? How much ibuprofen can I take and How much Tylenol can I take in a day? The answer is quite simple :

  • 1200 Mg of Ibuprofen per day
  • 3000 Mg of Tylenol per day

How do I take Tylenol?

So why does Tylenol help people get relief more quickly? For one, Tylenol can be stashed in a pocket or it can be carried in a bottle. The bottle has a safety-lock which makes it safe to travel with and to put away in a home with young children. Also, water doesn’t need to be heated up to use it (like a rag does), and you don’t really need to lay down (although it may help to wait for the effect to kick in!). Also, if some people don’t like the hard pill, they can always choose to take Tylenol in its liquid or chewable form. Both of those latter forms even come in cherry or grape flavor.

how long does it take for tylenol to work

Secondly, Tylenol is so easy on the stomach that it doesn’t even need to be taken with food or milk, nor does it need to be taken on a full stomach. How is that for ease-of-use? It should not create any side-effects if it is taken as directed on the label. If the dose isn’t enough to control the symptoms (that a user is actually trying to control), he or she should go ahead and speak to a doctor. Despite its gentleness on the stomach, and its use by people of all ages, taking more than directed can cause liver damage! With full information, however, this isn’t a concern for many people.


Perhaps it was McNeil’s direct marketing to doctors and pharmacists which ensured that Tylenol would become a household name, but most likely it was Tylenol’s ease of use that pushed it through. It even became the number one best selling product in the health and beauty industry by 1979. Tylenol continues to claim its first place status as doctor recommended. But regardless of its history, its position in comparison to other products on the market, and its ease of use, check with a doctor to make sure its right for you.