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Difference Between Aleve and Ibuprofen


Ibuprofen Structure

Aleve Vs Ibuprofen

If you’ve got a serious headache and other body pains then one of the quickest solutions is to resort to the use of pain killers. In this connection, there are many types of pain relievers being circulated in the market today. Aleve and Ibuprofen, although two dissimilar medications, are used for almost the same range of purposes ‘“ pain alleviation or reduction.

Foremost, Aleve is actually a popular brand name of the chemical compound Naproxen while Ibuprofen is just a generic name which serves as the chemical compound used in popular Ibuprofen brands like Advil and Motrin.

Ibuprofen is classified as one of the drugs belonging to the NSAID group or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. It acts by stopping the released prostaglandins that are made available because of an existing injury or inflammatory response and also inhibits the actual release of prostaglandin. Because of its mechanism of action, it thereby helps in decreasing overall inflammation, pain and even controls fever. It can be bought as an over the counter drug with preparation usually at 200mg and 400mg. Other stronger doses are available but on a prescription basis.

Aleve, a Naproxen Sodium drug, is another NSAID that is usually taken by arthritis patients. Aside from this, Aleve is also used as an OTC medication to relieve standard pain symptoms of menstrual cramping, migrant headaches and other forms of aches.

The two drugs as NSAIDS share the same disadvantage of increasing one’s risk for heart attack and stroke, if used all too frequently. The two can also induce gastric (stomach) bleeding because of their irritating chemical properties. Nevertheless, Aleve is thought to induce drowsiness and constipation among its users.

With regard to the length of therapeutic drug action, Naproxen (Aleve) seems to be the winner. Given almost the same dosing of Ibuprofen and Aleve, the effect of the latter lasts quite longer (8-12 hours) compared to the former (4-8 hours).

Although this is a pretty much subjective claim, many would agree that Aleve or Naproxen drugs have better pain killing effects most especially if you look it on a per dose basis. Aleve 375 mg may have a longer and more powerful effect than a 400mg Ibuprofen.

  • Aleve is a brand name while Ibuprofen is a generic name.
  • Aleve’s effects last longer compared to Ibuprofen’s.
  • Ibuprofen is said to induce more gastric irritation compared to Aleve.
  • Aleve is primarily used for arthritic pains unlike Ibuprofen.

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  1. I just read your article and very much appreciate the information contained therein. I have to suggest, though, that it is not subjective to say, “Aleve or Naproxen drugs have better pain killing effects.”

    I have taken Vioxx in the past, but it has since been “discontinued” to my great disappointment; it was working well. I wound up having to use Ibuprofen, which did little to help before. I found that I had to take either 600 or 800 mg of Ibuprofen PLUS at least ONE extra strength Tylenol together to take the edge off the weather pain in my leg.

    I just started using Aleve (on occasion) this year. In retrospect, I can recognize how quickly and effectively it addressed the pain. But just a day or two ago, I began to wonder if these two drugs were the same after all (I’d always thought they were).

    I was told by a dermatologist that I have “capillaritis” and that IT IS BECAUSE OF the ibuprofen/nsaid use. When he told me that ibuprofen, in combination with either alcohol or strenuous activity, was without question the cause, I had to believe him BECAUSE I’d taken IBU AND I had shoveled our driveway (4 car lengths of heavy snow).

    However, I have questioned that declaration many times. I RARELY drink alcohol – for the MOST part less than ONE drink per MONTH!!! And until someone defines “strenuous” as something I am actually capable of doing, I DON’T… I mean, I have gone on a cleaning frenzy in my house, but really? Come on!

    Anyway, I had not been seeing evidence of the capillaritis the past few weeks/months until a couple days ago. Last night I realized I had used the IBU again as I could not locate the Aleve bottle – that’s about how often I NEED it, but when I do….. whooooo!

    Sooooo, I came online to discover if there was a difference between the two drugs and was surprised that there is indeed a difference – maybe not a LARGE one, but enough to potentially prove MY theory that it is NOT any/all NSAIDS + ANYthing making this happen. Still, I don’t know exactly what IS causing it, but I’m guessing regular IBU is at least involved.

    Anyway…………….. just wanted to share and say thank you for your article here! 🙂

  2. Ha! That is A LOT of CAPITALIZED letters. HOLY COW!!!

    • lololololololol

      oh my, you have me just rollin NOW! 😉 ahhhhhh (sigh)

      it’s not even my BEST! LOL

      IDK how ELSE to adequately emphasize certain words, phrases, ideas, points, etc. If I could BOLDface or underline, I’d use those! 😛

      Thanks for the feedback. mooo [grin]

  3. My concern is: are there bad effects/affects in long term use of ibuprofen/aleve/nsaid drugs on the kidneys. Please respond. I can’t find any info re: this question. Thank you. Judy

  4. excuse bad typing – using left hand, right shoulder is in pain thus i am using Aleve.

    working even better for me than prescription opiate.
    still hurts, but what a difference – – i could actually muster a smile (and some sleep – yaye!)

    did seem to last about 10 hours, pretty good.

    i rarely take drugs, but needed this one.
    meanwhile, i’m healing the injury with BFC herbs by Dr Christopher (miraculous stuff), but needed some pain releif too.

  5. I have to take 800 milagrams of ibuprofen and I’ve had to take it sometimes consistently for 3 to 4 days and then my face swells up my hands swell up my feet and ankles swell up but I’m in such pain that I have to take it and I get headaches so bad and my neck hurts so bad that I have to take something but now I’m questioning if I should switch to the Aleve or naproxen any suggestions ?????

    • I am allergic to Ibuprofen which causes facial and finger swelling. I went to the doctor today and was told to take Motrin or Advil for inflammation. I stated I was allergic to Ibuprofen, but I can take Aleve. He said, “I don’t understand, it’s the same thing”. Apparently, something is different because I can take one and not the others.

      • I just had the same thing happen to me today! I went to the doctor. Told her I am allergic to ibprophen and that I take Aleve! She said how is that? I said I don’t know but it works so that is what I am doing. She thinks I’m lying cuz doctors are always right?

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