Compare Naproxen vs. Aspirin

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Aleve (Naproxen)

Prescription or OTC

Aspirin

Over-the-counter
Relieves pain, fever, and inflammation.

Aleve (Naproxen) works well for mild to moderate pain and inflammation, and it lasts longer than other NSAIDs.

5.3/ 7 average rating with 978 reviewsforNaproxen
Relieves pain, fever, and inflammation. Protects your heart and thins blood.

A low dose of Aspirin (81mg) every day can protect your heart, but it's not the best medicine to take for pain, swelling, or fever.

5.2/ 7 average rating with 533 reviewsforAspirin
Upsides
  • Works well to relieve pain, swelling, and fevers.
  • Good for menstrual cramps, toothaches, body aches, and mild arthritis pain.
  • Lasts longer than Ibuprofen, so you can take it less often.
  • Aleve (Naproxen) works as well as Aspirin and Indomethacin to treat arthritis pain, and causes fewer stomach problems.
  • Although not without side effects, it's been around for a long time and is generally safe for short-term use.
  • When taking low doses (81 mg) every day, Aspirin provides protection for your heart and prevents heart attacks and stroke.
  • Used in higher doses to relieve pain, swelling, and fever.
  • Available over-the-counter in drugstores by itself and in combination with other cold and flu medications.
Downsides
  • It needs to be taken with food to avoid getting an upset stomach.
  • Can't be taken by pregnant women.
  • It can cause serious kidney and stomach problems (like ulcers and bleeding) the longer you take it.
  • Like all NSAIDs, it can raise your risk of having blood clots, heart attack, or stroke.
  • Not a preferred medication for treating pain, swelling, or fever due to its high risk of bleeding.
  • NSAIDs (like ibuprofen and naproxen) and acetaminophen (Tylenol) are better for treating pain and fever thank Aspirin.
  • Aspirin raises your risk of bleeding, especially when used with other blood thinner medications like warfarin (Coumadin).
  • Studies show that using higher doses of Aspirin (162 mg or more) every day raises your risk of stomach bleeding and doesn't provide any additional heart protection.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Delayed release tablet
  • Liquid
  • Pill
Price
Lowest price near you
$4
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Reviews
978 
78%
think this treatment is worth it
48%
think this treatment works well
5%
think this treatment is a hassle

Have you used Aleve (Naproxen)?

Leave a review
533 
76%
think this treatment is worth it
41%
think this treatment works well
6%
think this treatment is a hassle

Have you used Aspirin?

Leave a review
Side effects
The Aleve (Naproxen) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
The Aspirin FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and warnings
  • Heart attack or stroke

    History of heart problems

    ...and 4 more risk factors

  • Stomach bleeding

    History of stomach bleeding or ulcers

    ...and 3 more risk factors

  • Bruising or bleeding

    Hemophilia

    ...and 3 more risk factors

  • Serious allergic reactions

    Asthma

    ...and 4 more risk factors

  • Lower kidney function

    Kidney disease

    ...and 4 more risk factors

  • Harm to fetus

    Women of childbearing age

See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Brain damage or death from Reye's Syndrome

    Children 18 years or younger

    ...and 1 more risk factors

  • Stomach bleeding

    History of stomach bleeding or ulcers

    ...and 3 more risk factors

  • Serious allergic reactions

    Asthma

    ...and 4 more risk factors

  • Harm to unborn babies

    Women of childbearing age

See more detailed risks and warnings