In case of a Paracetamol overdose, seek medical attention right away.
If you miss a dose of Paracetamol, take it as soon as you can. However, if it is just about time for your next dose, skip the one you forgot
The uses of paracetamol and the dangers of overdoseParacetamol is a drug used as a painkiller (analgesic) and for reducing fever (antipyretic). Other names for it include Panadol and Tylenol in the US. Calpol is a liquid form for small children. It is also used as an ingredient in many cold and flu remedies, and together with other drugs such as codeine in more powerful painkillers. It is generally considered to be more effective than aspirin, which may have side-effects such as causing stomach bleeding.
The recommended adult dose of 2 x 500mg tablets (8 tablets maximum in a 24 hour period) is quite safe, but overdose is likely to result if more than 24 or 30 tablets are taken at the same time. A paracetamol overdose can damage the liver (an effect termed hepatotoxicity), and takes effect more than 24 hours later. However an antidote can be effective if given early enough, in the first 8 or 12 hours.
Normal doses of paracetamol taken repeatedly but spaced out do not build up and cause the same overdose effect as they would when taken together. The liver is also damaged in a different way by alcohol, so it is probably safe to use against a hangover headache!
Both aspirin and paracetamol have potential risks in poisoning, either through accidental or deliberate overdose.
In the UK the maximum number of tablets allowed in a pack, and the maximum number of tablets allowed in an over the counter sale, is 16 tablets.