Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Is It Safe to Drive While Taking Pain Killers?

Pain Killers

If you have been taking strong painkillers, we hope that you have been reading the instructions on your medication label. Chances are, you will find a phrase that reads something like this: “This product may cause drowsiness. Avoid using alcoholic beverages, and refrain from driving or operating machinery.”

This is simply because painkillers can affect people in a number of different ways. To be completely honest, some people may take a painkiller, even a very strong one, and say, “I don’t know what the big deal is about. I’m fine.” And maybe they are. There are people who have an incredible resistance to the side effects of medication. Most people, though, will experience at the very least mild side effects from heavy-duty pain medication. This is because many strong pain relievers are based on narcotics, and the term comes from the Greek word “narco,” meaning “stupor.”

If you are taking strong pain killers and planning to drive, do the following:

  • Do not drive for at least five days after starting a course of narcotic pain relievers. If your dose needs to be changed, wait another five days so you can be sure of knowing how the medication will affect you.

  • Do not drive if you feel sleepy.

  • Never mix your pain relief medication with alcohol.

  • Never exceed the recommended dosage.

  • Always consult your doctor if you are adding another medication to your painkillers.

After five days, if you feel fine and your doctor agrees, you can begin to drive while taking your painkillers. That is, of course, assuming that you are not experiencing any side effects.

Even so, you should begin by driving only on roads that are familiar to you, and ideally, you will begin driving at a time when traffic is not all that heavy. We also recommend that you have someone with you, just in case you have overestimated your ability to drive.

We understand that it is important to you to be mobile, but we cannot overstate the importance of being very sure that you and your doctor are both absolutely certain that your painkillers will not impair your ability to drive safely.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
P0291OBD-II Trouble Code: Cylinder 11 Injector Circuit Low
P0291 code definition When your vehicle’s PCM registers the P0291 code, it means that a voltage reading came from the fuel injector circuit – for cylinder number 11’s fuel injector –...
P0359 OBD-II Trouble Code: Ignition Coil I Primary/Secondary Circuit Malfunction
P0359 code definition The P0359 code indicates that a fault has been detected in one of the vehicle’s ignition coils, generally the number 9 coil. This code can also be associated...


Related questions

Q: How do I adjust the seat belt height?

The shoulder strap on the front seat belts can be adjusted to best fit the driver and the front passenger. The belt is adjusted at the shoulder anchor, which is where the belt retracts into. To raise the height of...

Q: How do I make a phone call on Uconnect, when I’m already in a phone call?

If you’re already on the phone with someone, you can easily make a second phone call. Press the Uconnect voice command button, and say “Dial” or “Call,” then follow the prompts. This will automatically put your first call on hold...

Q: What kind of coolant should I use?

It’s imperative that your vehicle is equipped with the coolant, especially if you use the air conditioning. The ideal coolant mixture for your car is 50% water, and 50% ethylene glycol antifreeze.