Is it better to take advil or ibuprofen?

As human beings, we are vulnerable to illness and injuries. No one likes being sick or experiencing pain – let’s be realistic, both equally suck!
Fortunately, for years there have been several over-the-counter (OTC) medications developed to help relieve the severity of these symptoms (and allow us productive humans get some work done).

Among the most commonly used OTC drugs in this category is ibuprofen which is usually available under different brands such as Motrin IB and Advil.

So when you stumble upon a drugstore aisle filled with boxes of Advil and Ibuprofen, wondering what each pill can offer you – what do you chose?

  • Are they essentially the same?
  • What distinguishes each from one another?
  • Can either pose any harmful effects if misused?

We will cover all that in this piece. So buckle up tight!

A Brief on Painkillers

Painkillers can be classified into various classes based on their action mechanisms but here we focus solely on those designed specifically for the treatment of mild-to-moderate pain relief.
For instance: Paracetamol (also known as Acetaminophen), Aspirin, Naproxen Sodium (Aleve), amongst others; however our focus today shall remain centered only around comparing two particularly notorious ones namely: Advil Vs Ibuprofen.

Let’s Move Straight Up!

The Lowdown On Both Drugs


While seemingly distinct medicinal products by brand name classification standards; ibuprofen & advil are actually more similar than otherwise.

Ibuprofen belongs to an NSAID family while advil describes specific tablet formulations of said class:
Registered under IP rights held by Pfizer Inc., original formulation strictly contains 200 mg doseage of ibuprofen lysine with other varieties available across different markets for treatment of various symptoms_(more on this later)_.
Therefore any debates surrounding disparities between both scripts are solely baseless.

Note: Lysine is a vital amino acid that helps our bodies produce proteins= you learnt something new today! (_high five_)

Action Mechanisms: How do they alleviate pain_

Both drugs contain the same active ingredient, ibuprofen, an organic molecule, and NSAID (Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug).
As the name suggests; anti-inflammatory properties help reduce inflammation, temperature & swelling in/around affected areas such as muscles or body tissues;
Pain relieving properties work to rejuvenate nerve endings thus lessening signals transmitted within the brain making you “feel” better & mercifully allowing sleep (where needed)

Ibuprofen belongs to a family of NSAIDs whose primary mode of activity derives from chemicals referred to as prostaglandins;
Released by injured cells when damage occursthey help notify our central nervous system about prospective ailments (surprisingly thoughtful).
In case of injuries/sickness; Pain pathways also lead to production which directly induce perceivable swelling giving us intense bouts discomfort.

By working on reducing levels circulating prostaglandins throughout body after injury/sickness- NSAIDs inhibit production, providing quicker relief.

Advil vs Ibuprofen – Comparison Table:

The self explanatory table below shall shed more insights visually;

Ibuprofen Advil
Molecular Formula C13H18O2 Same as Ibuofern
Branded Names Over The World Motrin IB N/A (Pfizer own rights)
% Dosage (Adults) 200 mg – 400 mg 200 mg – 400 mg
% Dosage (Children) 5mg / kg Same as Ibuprofen

Role in Temporary Fever Reduction

As previously outlined both medications contain active ibuprofen elements.
Ibuprofen is stated to be somewhat better than aspirin at reducing fever, due to its unique properties specifically aimed at breaking down thermogens released during illnesses requiring elevated body temperature for protection against infections.
That being said it’s worth retaining your curiosity on related drug formulas such Tylenol/Paracetamol.

Advil vs Ibuprofen – When SHOULD you take either?

Let’s break this down further:


  1. Migraines
  2. Dental Pains
  3. Menstrual Cramps (gentlemen we apologize if that seems irrelevant-let us know how high a cup of tea can go though!)
  4. Joint Pain
  5. Arthritis

“But It’s too much work trying to figure out which OTC medication would suit my specific pain symptoms & severity!”_We hear you cry.

It comes down to finding what works best for your body.(patiently reads instruction labels)
Adhere strongly to advice from pharmacist doctor or medical personnel where involved; self-medication practice should also involve the most basic infos available which reiterates dosage rates according to user age/specificity.

Don’t exceed planed recommended doses no matter how heinous the suffering may seem (we promise it won’t only will make recovery more efficient but help avoid unwanted side effects;)

Creativity…. On A Different Level.

..but really have you tried crushing ibuprofen and applying topically?

Apparently there are small groups that swear by using ibupfoen targetting joint/muscle pains with huge success rates over time with pretty low chances of major side-effects [^(1)]!

P.S: Please don’t try this on your own without proper medical consultation.

Advil Vs Ibuprofen – SIDE EFFECTS

As with any human-synthesized drug (even the miraculous panacea aspirin!), potential adverse effects exist for both drugs;


  • Upset stomach
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Heartburn/Nausea

Dangerous Affects (Generally can be precipitated by mis-consumption or overdose)

Moderate to Severe Kidney Damage/Subsequent Failure

 Cardiac Related Complications, which include but not limited to stroke and heart attack

    Crohn’s disease trigger progression


As reiterated earlier, advil is almost identical in nature to ibuprofen albeit under pfizer franchise ownership. Therefore while ranking slightly lower in side-effect potentials(eg allergies); it always pays dividends & wisdom to take good care trying prevent bad days…

  • Headaches causing nausea
  • Reduced Platelets Vital For Blood Clotting (please seek medical advice promptly)

Also just like a teething toddler an oopsy might accidentally make their way into prescription prep work/Medication; Seek immediate Professional Medical attention…..


Dosage requirements vary depending upon age as well as condition severity…we’ll settle at the primary ones.

For Infants agenewborn/ <12 weeks:

Medical Personnel strongly discourage use of OTC medication formulations containing Ibuprofen Lysine;

Paracetamol/Tylenol formulation is most recommended(always consult a pediatrician first when needed-not us ._^)

For children aged >= 3 months up till roughly around teenagerhoood:

Acetaminophen has been proven mostly safe from infancy up till teenage years


  • For children aged between 1 -4: Less than 600mg per dose

  • For ages between5 -12years: <=1200mg/dose

This translates to roughly around two or three doses daily; not exceeding any thresholds under medical advice of course.


200 mg as the minimum recommended dosage except for those with highly active metabolisms.
Maximum dosages should never exceed 6 caplets within a twenty-four hour time frameNo matter how…

  • Irresistibly charming & persutakes out crystal ball No Not At All / Do NOT EVEN TRY IT AT HOME.

Simply put, treat your body just like how you’d treat that vintage new saxophone passed down from grandpa! As in, NEVER disregard Professional Medical Advice (obviously),follow proper prescription-giving schedules and read labels carefully on whichever OTC medicinal products seeking usage consideration y’all have!

And there goes our article,

Just remember to always be cautious and mindful when it comes to health matters.(and well now we know which drug we can reach first according to specific needs) Thanks NSAIDs!!!

Adios,Au revoir…,Goodbye!
(tips hat)

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