Paracetamol is fast becoming a hot commodity in the UK as the number of confirmed cases of coronavirus continues to rise.
Shoppers all over the country are finding it difficult to get hold of the over-the-counter medication, which can be used to alleviate some of the symptoms of a seasonal cold and flu.
On its website, the NHS recommends self-medicating with paracetamol if you think you have COVID-19.
Where can I buy paracetamol in the UK?
Traditionally, paracetamol tablets are available at just about every major supermarket in the country.
But with widespread panic-buying continuing to clear the shelves at the likes of Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda, Morrisons and elsewhere, getting hold of paracetmol in the UK is becoming increasingly difficult.
People on Twitter have reported sellers on eBay trying to shift boxes of the medication – usually available for fairly cheap – for £50 or more.
But it’s worth having a hunt around for boxes at the standard price in smaller shops. Local newsagents and small, independent supermarkets are less likely to have been cleared out than the bigger shops, as are pharmacies.
Should I buy paracetamol online?
It’s nevertheless worth looking online for paracetamol, whether you are fully self-isolating or simply trying to cut down on non-essential travel, as the Government recommended on Monday (March 16).
The online shops of some of Britain’s big supermarkets have either sold out completely or sell out soon after listing new stock.
On Wednesday (March 18) afternoon, Tesco had no paracetamol in stock and that part of Asda’s website was down.
But Sainsbury’s had some in stock, with a note on the listing informing customers it was limiting purchases to two per order.
Morrisons, meanwhile, was listing some paracetamol brands, but only those that also contain caffeine.
Why are people in the UK rushing to buy paracetamol?
Brits are scrambling to stock up on paracetamol because of its effectiveness in helping to alleviate a standard cold or flu, which is how coronavirus could feel for those not deemed at a heightened risk from the bug due to underlying health conditions.
It’s become such a sought-after item that it even appears to have overtaken toilet roll, which people all over the work have been rushing to stock up on since the coronavirus outbreak became a pandemic.
Ibuprofen, while also sold out in some online stores, doesn’t appear to be as sought after – possibly due to suggestions from some doctors that, despite the NHS giving it the thumbs up for coronavirus self-medication, ibuprofen could actually worsen the symptoms of COVID-19.
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