OTC Facts

Know Your Facts About OTC

You may think that because over-the-counter (OTC) products are available without a prescription – and usually cost less – they don't provide the same benefits as their prescription alternatives.

So what are the facts?

  • OTC medications have been on the market for years and have a proven safety record.
  • Many OTC products are available in the same strength as their prescription versions, and can have the same results.
  • The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires OTC medications to meet stringent regulations for safety and purity.
  • OTC medications must be safe enough for consumers to use without the supervision of a doctor.
  • OTC products are usually less expensive than their prescription equivalents.

Talk to your doctor or pharmacist to see which OTC medications might be best for you.

OTC Best Buys

Which OTC medications are “Best Buys” according to Consumer Reports

Is a drug available OTC?

Find out with an easy-to-use search tool  from the Physicans’ Desktop Reference.

Need more information?

Learn just about everything you want to know about OTC medications from the Consumer Healthcare Products Association.

Page Modified:May 18, 2012