Tylenol’s Strange Side Effect
A study at the National Institutes of Health has shown that acetaminophen, the most common painkiller in the United States, can reduce your ability to feel empathy. A study with college students showed that the people that took acetaminophen were less likely to feel emotional to other people’s pain. Scientists are looking further into the relationship between over-the-counter pain killers and serotonin, and emotional/psychological responses. The lead scientist has pointed out that the effect on empathy is moderate, and that so far it seems that acetaminophen only slightly dulls empathetic responses. Acetaminophen is most popularly sold as Tylenol. Other studies have also looked into the affect acetaminophen has on the user’s psychology.