Ibuprofen Tablets (400mg & 600mg)

  • Effective in providing pain relief and reducing inflammation
  • Used to treat a wide number of conditions from back pain to flu like symptoms
  • One of the most commonly prescribed pain relief medicines in the UK

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What are Ibuprofen Tablets?

Ibuprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is very effective in providing pain relief and reducing inflammation.

It is available in various dosages, and you do not need a prescription to purchase this medicine in lower doses, although it should always be bought from a registered pharmacy such as Medicine Direct.

Ibuprofen is considered to be the safest NSAID when it comes to reports of adverse effects in the UK

Ibuprofen tablets are available in doses that range from 200mg to 800mg, typically, the lower dose of Ibuprofen is available over the counter.

You can view more information about Ibuprofen on the NHS website.

What is Ibuprofen 400mg and 600mg tablets used to treat?

Ibuprofen is one of the most commonly prescribed medicines to provide effective pain relief for a wide range of conditions. Some of the most common problems Ibuprofen can help to treat include:

  • back pain
  • period pain
  • toothache
  • cold and flu like symptoms
  • aches and pains
  • arthritis

Thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties, it can also be used to treat inflammation such as strains and sprains.

Some strengths, such as Ibuprofen 400mg tablets and below are available over the counter, anything above the 400mg dose is considered to be a prescription only medicine.

How does Ibuprofen work?

Ibuprofen works by inhibiting cells that contribute to the production of Prostaglandins that is responsible for causing pain and inflammation. 

When we get injured, prostaglandins are produced at the source of an injury, they cause pain and inflammation and let the body know that we are in pain. 

Whilst prostaglandins in most cases are beneficial to the body, in some cases the bodys natural healing process can sometimes lead to an excessive production of prostaglandins which can contribute to unwanted pain and inflammation. Excessive production of prostaglandins can directly cause conditions such as arthritis, menstrual cramps and heavy menstrual bleeding.

By inhibiting the cells that produce prostaglandins, Ibuprofen helps to reduce pain and inflammation as a result.

Who can take Ibuprofen Tablets?

Ibuprofen is one of the most prescribed and purchased anti-inflammatory pain relief medicines in the UK.

It is suitable for adults and children who are over 12 years old.

However, it is not a suitable pain treatment for everyone. Certain Ibuprofen doses may not be suitable for everyone, for example your doctor may consider Ibuprofen 600mg to be too high of a dose for your condition and instead recommend over the counter Ibuprofen in a lower dose.

Additionally, if you have already tried Ibuprofen over the counter, your doctor may choose to prescribe you with a higher dose of Ibuprofen particularly if it has failed to relieve your symptoms.

You should not take Ibuprofen tablets or apply it to your skin if any of the below conditions apply to you:

  • You are allergic to Ibuprofen or any other medicines
  • You are under 12 years old
  • You are allergic to aspartame, colourings, gelatine, glucose, lactose, sodium, sorbitol, soya or sucrose
  • You have high blood pressure that is not under control
  • You have had any allergic symptoms such as wheezing or skin conditions after taking any other NSAID medicines

You should tell your doctor or pharmacist before taking Ibuprofen tablets if you have any of the below:

  • You have kidney failure
  • You have Chron's disease or ulcerative colitis
  • You have heart disease or severe heart failure
  • You have had bleeding in your stomach, a hole in your stomach or a stomach ulcer
  • You have any liver problems

You should also inform your doctor if you have chicken pox or shingles as Ibuprofen can increase the chances of certain infections and skin problems.

Can you take paracetamol and ibuprofen together?

Yes, if you are over the age of 16 you can take both paracetamol and ibuprofen together. However, you must follow the dosage instructions and take it exactly as prescribed by your doctor. 

It has also been claimed that taking Ibuprofen and Paracetamol together can help to rapidly reduce fever.

Read our guide on taking Ibuprofen with other medicines such as Naproxen and paracetamol for pain relief.

Can you buy Ibuprofen over the counter?

Yes, Ibuprofen is available to buy over the counter from most pharmacies and supermarkets in the UK. If you are trying to buy Ibuprofen 400mg and above, you may be required to answer a few questions from a pharmacist who will want to know a little bit more about your condition to ensure this is the most suitable treatment for your condition.

Can you buy Ibuprofen Tablets Online?

Yes, Ibuprofen can be bought online from most online pharmacies in the UK. It is important to ensure you are purchasing medicine from a fully regulated online pharmacy.

To find out more about our company and who we are regulated by, look at our About Us page.


Ibuprofen Indications and Dose

All of our Doctors and Pharmacists follow NICE guidelines when prescribing Ibuprofen.

Typically, Ibuprofen 400mg and 600mg tablets are prescription-only due to the higher dosage. Lower doses of 200mg are available to purchase without a prescription.

Ibuprofen 400mg tablets should be swallowed whole with a glass of water. You should take one tablet three times a day.

The average non-prescribed dose is 200mg. Adults should take this amount in one or two tablets, three times a day. If you are taking a stronger dose that has been prescribed by a doctor, you may be instructed to take it more or less frequently than this; you should only do this on your doctor's instructions.

When taking Ibuprofen three times a day, you should leave at least six hours between each dose. If you are taking it four times a day, leave four hours between doses.

Ibuprofen FAQ's

How long does Ibuprofen take to work?

Ibuprofen is very fast acting, you should start to feel better within 20 - 30 minutes after taking it.

Is Ibuprofen different to Nurofen?

Nurofen is one of several brand names used to sell Ibuprofen. Other brand names you may see for this medicine include Advil or Motrin.

Is Ibuprofen stronger than paracetamol?

Yes, Ibuprofen is considered to be a stronger pain killer when compared to paracetamol. Ibuprofen 400mg and above are only available on prescription, whereas paracetamol can be purchased over the counter.

Can you buy 500mg Ibuprofen over the counter?

This medicine usually comes in doses of 200mg, 400mg or 600mg. Doses over 200mg usually require a prescription.

Can you take Paracetamol and Ibuprofen together?

Yes, you can take Ibuprofen together with Paracetamol if you are over the age of 16.

Can You take Ibuprofen for a long time?

Ibuprofen is usually safe to take for a long time. If you need to take Ibuprofen for a long time, your doctor is likely to also prescribe you with medicine to protect your stomach as Ibuprofen can sometimes damage the lining of the stomach.

Is Ibuprofen stronger than Naproxen?

Both medicines belong to the NSAID family of drugs, they are both used to treat similar conditions. There is no distinct difference in the strength and effectiveness of both drugs.

Can you drink alcohol whilst taking Ibuprofen?

Drinking alcohol whilst taking Ibuprofen is considered to be safe, however it is also recommended to stick to the recommended daily alcohol intake to reduce the risks of adverse side effects

When is the best time to take Ibuprofen?

It is best to take Ibuprofen with, or after a meal. This is because it can damage the lining of the stomach when taken on an empty stomach.

Can you take Ibuprofen and Naproxen together?

No, you must not take Naproxen and Ibuprofen together. Both medicines are very similar and belong to the same family of drugs, taking both together at the same time can increase your risks of side effects and overdose.

Ibuprofen side effects

As with all medicines, there is always the risk of side effects when taking Ibuprofen.

Common side effects associated with Ibuprofen tablets include:

  • Indigestion
  • Feeling sick
  • Being sick
  • Wind
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness

You should seek advice from your doctor if these symptoms occur and do not go away.

Serious Side effects

Please, refer to the main product page for a list of the most common side effects.

In some cases, you may experience more severe adverse reactions. You should call 111 or contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of these:

  • Breathing difficulties or asthma symptoms worsening
  • Black stools or blood in your vomit - these could be signs of stomach bleeding
  • Severe chest pain or stomach pain
  • Swollen ankles, blood in your urine or not urinating at all - possible signs of kidney problems

If you suffer from any of the below symptoms, you should call 999 or go to A&E immediately; you may be having a severe allergic reaction and may require immediate hospital treatment:

  • Swelling of the mouth, lips, face, tongue or throat
  • A skin rash that is red, itchy, swollen, blistering or peeling
  • You have tightness in the chest or throat
  • You are wheezing
  • You are finding it difficult to breathe or to speak

Always purchase your medication from a registered pharmacy. If you have any concerns or questions, please do not hesitate to speak to your doctor or pharmacist.

Patient Information Leaflet

You should always read the patient information leaflet before taking Ibuprofen to familiarise yourself with any potential side effects.

Ibuprofen 600mg Patient Information Leaflet

Ibuprofen 400mg Patient Information Leaflet

Ibuprofen Warnings and drug interactions

Ibuprofen can interact with other medicines, especially similar medicines that provide pain relief.

It is safe to take this medicine with codeine or paracetamol, but you should not take aspirin or naproxen alongside Ibuprofen without consulting your doctor or pharmacist. These drugs are all nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and can increase the risk of side effects if they are taken at the same time.

You should speak to your doctor about using any cold and flu medicines that you can purchase over the counter before you use Ibuprofen; some of these may contain NSAID ingredients that will interact with Ibuprofen.

Ibuprofen may also interact with these medicines. You should inform your doctor if you are currently using any of these:

  • Voriconazole or fluconazole (for fungal infections)
  • Sulphonylureas (for diabetes mellitus)
  • SSRIs (used to treat depression)
  • ACE-inhibitors such as captopril
  • Medicine for high blood pressure
  • Corticosteroids
  • Quinolones
  • Aminoglycosides
  • Methotrexate, tacrolimus ciclosporin, pemetrexed
  • Lithium (used to treat manic depressive disorders)
  • HIV medicines
  • Digoxin
  • Mifepristone
  • Blood thinners such as Warfarin
  • Beta-blockers such as atenolol medicines
  • Probenecid
  • Cholestyramine

Please note that this list may not be exhaustive. For the full list of drugs that may interact with Ibuprofen, you should read the patient information leaflet that will accompany your medication.

If you have any doubts or concerns, please discuss them with your doctor before you take this medicine.

You should only purchase medicine from a registered pharmacy like Medicine Direct.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

Unless Ibuprofen has been prescribed by a doctor, it is not recommended that you use this medicine if you are pregnant, particularly if you are more than 30 weeks pregnant. Taking Ibuprofen while pregnant has been linked to certain birth defects, particularly damage to your baby's heart and blood vessels.

There is also a suggested link between this medicine and miscarriages in early pregnancy.

Paracetamol is the most commonly recommended drug to take for pain while pregnant.

This medicine is safe to take in the form of tablets or a skin gel while you are breastfeeding.

You should always speak to your doctor and pharmacist if you have any concerns at all.

Ibuprofen Ingredients

The main active ingredient within this medicine is: Ibuprofen

For a full list of the inactive ingredients, please read the Summary of Product Characteristics

Delivery Company Delivery Service Price Details
Royal Mail UK Delivery Standard UK Tracked £2.99 3 - 4 Working Day Delivery
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Next Day Delivery - Tracked £5.95 Order by 2pm (subject to Dr approval) Next Working Day Delivery
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Next Day Tracked Morning Delivery by 12:00pm £12.95 Next Working Day Morning Delivery by 12:00pm
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Tracked Saturday Delivery £9.95

Delivery specified for Saturday

Order Friday by 2pm (subject to Dr approval)

Please note that next day delivery to Northern Ireland, Scottish Highlands & Islands and British Isles cannot be guaranteed. Please contact our team for more information.

Written byHussain Abdeh MPharm: 2211840

Updated on: 20/05/2021

This content has been written by our Superintendent Pharmacist Hussain Abdeh and has been medically reviewed by our Pharmacist Sonia Khan

Hussain Abdeh Superintendent Pharmacist at Medicine Direct

Hussain Abdeh
MPharm: 2211840

Pharmacist Independent Prescriber

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