Over-the-Counter and Herbal Medications: Do You Know What You are Taking?

Medications and herbal supplements that you can buy at the store without a prescription, known as “over-the-counter” (OTC) medications, are considered drugs too. They have effects and side effects just like prescription medicines. If you are taking OTC or herbal medications, it is important to follow the instructions on the container. Always let your doctor know what OTC and herbal medications you are taking.

P.S. Herbal medication regulations are pretty relaxed, so there is no guarantee that the ingredients listed on the label are actually in the pills. This means you may not know what you are really taking! Plus, herbal medicine companies are not required to prove that their medications are safe or that they even work! So take pills with caution.

Call Arizona Drug and Poison Information Center with questions at 1-800-222-1222.

Herbal Medications and Pregnancy

There have been no studies of herbal medications in pregnancy, so we don’t know what their effects could be. For this reason, do not take herbal medications during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Always let your doctor know what herbal medications you are taking.