I had a patient come see me in my office a few days ago. He had been taking 2400 mg of ibuprofen every day for months to try to get over an ankle injury. That amount of anti-inflammatory medication might be high for most of us, but we often use these medicines to try to decrease pain and swelling after an injury.

When can taking an anti-inflammatory medication actually be harmful? And what should we do instead?

Since we can buy medications like ibuprofen or naproxen over the counter, we might assume that they’re completely safe. Generally athletic people don’t have problems taking them occasionally for minor injuries, but they should take some simple precautions.

In this video, I explain some of the side effects these medications can have, what medical problems can make these medications dangerous and much more.

Anti-inflammatory medication bottle