Pain Meds while on Antidepressants

I have gotten varying responses to whether it is safe to use advil while taking an SSRI. I was told by my neurologist that it is safe to continue using advil and my migraine med Maxalt as well. However the pharmacist and family doctor don’t think using either of these things while on a SSRI is a good idea. Since I know many of you are trying them or have tried them in the past, what did you do for headaches while on antidepressants? I have a killer headache right now…

Hi dizzygrl,

Here in Australia, Advil is just ibuprofen. If that’s the case where you are, there is absolutely no reason why you cannot take it with an SSRI. I’ve been using it for years. There is nothing on the MIMS database (used by doctors here) to suggest otherwise either. Why your doctor would tell you this makes no sense to me whatsoever unless Advil has other things in it that I am not aware of. Can you let me know if it’s just ibuprofen. If so it’s absolutely fine.

Cheers … Scott 8)

Thanks for your response Scott. Yes advil is just ibuprofen. I took some yesterday and I was fine. From what I could find out from my pharmacist, you shouldn’t be taking it daily while using a SSRI. Taking it as needed should be fine. I guess the two together can cause some kind of bleeding disorder when taken long term.

Hi Dizzygrl,
Yes, your pharmacist is right from a theoretical standpoint. SSRI’s do increase the “blood thinning” property of ibuprofen. That being said, you would have to take a lot of your SSRI with large doses of ibuprofen. I believe you should feel safe to take ibuprofen as needed.
Be well,

Interesting info Lisa. Never heard that before! But yeah, sounds like you’d have to take truck loads of it continuously for problems to start.

Also note that ibuprofen may cause rebound headache for some. I personally don’t get that effect and it’s stated in Heal Your Headache to not cause rebound but some here say it does. I’d use it here and there but never daily and you should avoid any hassles.

Best … Scott

Thanks Lisa for the info. It’s nice to get a dr’s opinion here on the boards! Good point about the rebound Scott. I don’t take it daily just here & there as needed.