I see this Target commercial every once in a while and it just bugs me. I want to know the answers. After a rigorous morning of google searches I have answered all the questions for you and me. So next time this commercial comes on you can really impress whoever you are watching TV with because duh, you totally know all those answers. Here they are:
1. What’s the difference between Advil and Tylenol?
Pain Reliever: Ibuprofen
Over-the-counter brands: Motrin, Advil
Ibuprofen is chemically similar to regular aspirin and functions in an analogous way, minimizing the production of prostaglandins, though it accomplishes this with slightly different chemical reactions. So how is ibuprofen different from aspirin? In lower doses, ibuprofen seems to irritate the esophagus and stomach lining less than its close cousins, aspirin and naproxen. If you have ulcers or acid reflux disease, ibuprofen may be the best product for pain clearly resulting from inflammation (arthritis, sprains, sunburns, etc.).
Pain Reliever: Acetaminophen (sometimes called paracetamol)
Over-the-counter brands: Tylenol
As they used to sing on Sesame Street: One of these things is not like the other things! And such is the case for acetaminophen. This pain reliever lowers fevers and soothes headaches effectively, but it is NOT an anti-inflammatory substance. As a result, it won’t do much for arthritis or sprains. Of course, acetaminophen has some key trade-off benefits, including a milder effect on the upper digestive tract than other over-the-counter pain relievers. It is less irritating to the lining of the stomach, making it the best headache treatment for people with acid reflux disease, ulcers, and the like. Acetaminophen is also safer for hemophiliacs and children than aspirin and its friends. There are various permutations of acetaminophen on the market, so be sure to see what else it’s partnered with and whether drowsiness may result from the combo. (source)
Why are $4 generics (prescriptions) just as good?
A generic must contain the same active ingredients as the original formulation. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), generic drugs are identical or within an acceptable bioequivalent range to the brand name counterpart with respect to pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties. By extension, therefore, generics are considered (by the FDA) identical in dose, strength, route of administration, safety, efficacy, and intended use. The FDA’s use of the word identical is very much a legal interpretation, and is not literal. In most cases, generic products are available once the patent protections afforded to the original developer have expired. When generic products become available, the market competition often leads to substantially lower prices for both the original brand name product and the generic forms. The time it takes a generic drug to appear on the market varies. In the US, drug patents give twenty years of protection, but they are applied for before clinical trials begin, so the effective life of a drug patent tends to be between seven and twelve years. (source) List of Target’s $4 generics here.
4. Are chewable vitamins only for kids?
No! There are now chewable vitamins just for adults. If you are swiping your kids vitamins just make sure you are taking the correct dosage for adults. Also, kids should take chewables formulated for children and not adult chewables. (source)
5. Why is Pepto pink?
The active ingredient Bismuth Subsalicylate has a natural pink tone but Pepto is bright pink because of chemical additives D&C Red 22 and D&C Red 28 to the formula. Pepto has been pink since its inception in 1901. (source)