This article notes that, "there is no such thing as risk-free medication". They list several of the issues that can happen which include:
•Wrong treatment for the condition - Taking the wrong over-the-counter medication for the set of self-diagnosed health issues.
•Side Effects - All drugs carry the risk of adverse reactions. Some, in certain circumstances could be serious.
•Drug interactions - They note that any drug, even over the counter drugs, can interact with any other drugs. The results can be serious and unpredictable.
•Worsening of existing illness - This article notes that sometimes nonprescription medications could cause a pre-existing problem to worsen.
•Nonprescription medicines are often taken incorrectly - A common problem is when over-the-counter medicine is taken more frequently or in higher doses than recommended.
•Duplicate medicines - Some over the counter medications are similar to prescription drugs and can cause overdoses when taken with them.
•Unpredictable reactions - In this area the article notes, "Just because a medicine is available without a prescription does not eliminate the rare and unpredictable allergic reaction."
The author recommends caution. He recommends that you "Read the fine print." They also recommend, "Pay particular attention to warnings about conditions you might have that would make the medicine more risky."