Advil PM Review: Is it Effective for Sleep?

Advil PM Review

Advil PM Summarized


  • Effective at managing joint pain and insomnia associated with arthritis


  • For occasional, short-term use only
  • Too many inactive ingredients (fillers)
  • Doesn’t address long-term joint health, cartilage repair, or joint mobility
  • Can cause a wide range of adverse side effects


Advil PM is a fairly straightforward supplement; what you see is what you get. It contains two active ingredients, one of which is ibuprofen, which is well-known for its ability to reduce joint pain, stiffness, and inflammation. Advil PM can also help you fall asleep faster which is due to the fact that it uses an antihistamine. 

The main downside, though, is that it is not healthy for everyday use. Consistent use of ibuprofen (or taking more than recommended) can give you serious side effects. What’s more, Advil PM doesn’t use any of the natural ingredients that are commonly found in the best joint and sleep supplements that promote cartilage healing and protection, joint motility, and deep REM sleep. 

Advil PM is great for occasionally “masking” the symptoms, but it is by no means a long-term solution like some of the natural joint supplements and sleep aids out there.

What do we recommend?

See Our Top 3 Highest-Rated Sleep Aids


The Top 3 Best-Reviewed Joint Supplements

About Advil PM

Advil PM is an OTC drug that comes in caplets that are meant to be taken before you go to sleep to help with two things:

  1. Reduce your joint pain.
  2. Help you fall asleep faster.

Advil PM claims it helps you with:

  • Backaches
  • Minor arthritis symptoms
  • Joint pain
  • Other minor nighttime aches that disrupt deep sleep

That sounds good on paper, but does Advil PM really work as advertised? Typically, drugs that induce sleep only help you sleep longer, but don’t improve actual sleep quality. In fact, some of them reduce sleep quality and reduce your daily cognitive function! They are good for occasional help when you need it, but as a long-term solution? We’ll tell you right off the bat, we’re not the biggest fans. But we’ll get to that in a minute.

For now, let’s take a closer look at Advil PM’s ingredients. Are they safe, effective, and good value for money? Are they the right choice for you?

What’s Inside?

Here is a look at the label of Advil PM:

Advil PM Ingredients

As you’ll notice, there are only 2 active ingredients in Advil PM; Ibuprofen (200mg) and Diphenhydramine citrate (38mg). Alongside these, there is also a bunch of inactive “filler” ingredients in Advil PM.

The positive news is that we can see all the ingredient doses on the label. This allows us to determine if they are safe and effective when comparing the data against the available scientific research.

However, the question is, are two ingredients alone enough to give you substantial relief from joint pain and help to improve your sleep?

The short answer is yes, in this case, these two ingredients are enough. Both ingredients are actually synthetic drugs – one an antihistamine that induces drowsiness, and the other is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication. Both are potent at doing what they do. You will certainly feel the effects, whether your issue is joint pain or insomnia.

The problem is, however, is that these drugs are double-edged swords with side effects. You can’t really take them daily long-term. Advil PM doesn’t actually improve your sleep quality. All it does it helps you get to sleep faster, especially if you have trouble falling asleep due to pain. There are better solutions on the market that use natural ingredients that reduce pain and at the same time improve sleep (both onset and quality).

Below, we’re going to explain each active ingredient in more detail, before giving our commentary on Advil PM’s formula as a whole and whether we think it can help you with what it claims or not.

Ibuprofen (200mg)

If you haven’t ever used Ibuprofen, chances are you’ve at least heard of it. 

Ibuprofen is a commonly used non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It’s also known as an analgesic and is typically used to treat pain, fever, and swelling.

Ibuprofen is very effective for:

  • the relief of mild to moderate aches and pains
  • inflammation associated with conditions like arthritis
  • fever reduction in those with flu or common cold
  • relief from menstrual cramps

One of the most established benefits of ibuprofen is that it’s been shown to reduce inflammatory symptoms such as swelling, stiffness, and morning joint stiffness. 

Ibuprofen’s effects are more potent than virtually any natural supplement out there, which is why so many people use it. However, this comes at a price.

Ibuprofen is typically recommended by doctors for short-term use only, and only when required. Despite this, some people take Ibuprofen daily for months or years, which can lead to severe side effects such as kidney strain. Luckily, the dosage of 200mg of ibuprofen that is in Advil PM is on the lighter side, which means its effects won’t be as strong, and it can be taken for longer without experiencing major side effects. 

Diphenhydramine citrate (38mg)

Diphenhydramine citrate is an antihistamine that is used to relieve symptoms of allergic reactions like hay fever, and the common cold. It can also be used to help you sleep better, and get relief from chronic itching.

Diphenhydramine citrate should make you drowsy. In some people it also leads to constipation, just so you’re aware.

While Diphenhydramine citrate can be quite effective in putting you to sleep, the jury is still out on how healthy it is for long-term use, especially when compared to natural sleep supplements. 

As with many pharmaceutical sleep aids, you’re trading your sleep quality for the effect of falling asleep faster. I get it if you’re having an important day coming up, or if you’re suffering from jet lag. In these cases, this ingredient comes in handy. But it’s not a solution for chronic insomnia! It just masks the problem, and over time, it can make it worse.

Our Thoughts on the Ingredients in Advil PM

Despite being an extremely slim formula, Advil PM should be effective enough to give you pain relief and get you to sleep faster. 

The joint pain reduction effects, in particular, should be more potent than most, if not all natural joint supplements on the market.

That said, Advil PM has a massive downside – it comes with a significantly higher risk of side effects when compared to natural supplements.

Ibuprofen and Diphenhydramine citrate are both non-prescription drugs that, while highly effective in the short term, can cause a whole slew of health issues when taken in doses that are higher than recommended, or when taken for too long without giving your body a break. Due to their effectiveness in reducing inflammation, you could easily become dependent on them.

In our opinion, you’re trading too much in order to get these benefits.

Fortunately, there are many sleep & joint supplements on the market today that use safe, effective, and well-researched natural ingredients that don’t cause any such side effects – these supplements can give you similar benefits without making you dependent.

With that in mind, we do recommend checking with a doctor before taking Advil PM – especially if you’re on any meds or suffer from a health condition.

Dosage Instructions (How to Take)

Advil PM dosage is 2 caplets before bedtime. Do not take more than 2 caplets within 24 hours as it can cause severe side effects. 

*Advil PM is intended only for individuals who are 12 or older.

What do Others Say?

AdvilPM has impressive ratings online, including on Amazon, Walgreens, and Walmart. These mostly include 4 and 5-star reviews and testimonials of how the product successfully helped manage people’s joint and sleep issues. 

Occasionally, you may stumble upon a negative review; in these cases, customers often complain about side effects, such as kidney pain, headaches, and nausea among others.

What are the Negative Effects of Advil PM?

Advil PM contains ibuprofen and Diphenhydramine citrate, both pharmaceutical drugs known to have interactions with other medications, along with causing negative side effects on their own.

Side effects of Ibuprofen can vary from person to person. Some may experience an upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and internal bleeding in rare cases. Ibuprofen isn’t recommended for people who’re suffering from certain health conditions, such as CKD.

Diphenhydramine is a drug that you take for allergic reactions, for the symptoms of the common cold, or to make you sleep. This drug works by blocking certain natural chemicals in your body (such as histamine and acetylcholine).

As with most antihistamines, some possible side effects of taking this drug include headache, dizziness, dry mouth and throat, constipation, nausea, and vomiting.

Cost & Value

Advil PM costs $12.49 on Amazon. It comes in blister packs, in different sizes. It is also available in Walmart, Walgreens, Target, and CVS, with the price varying from website to website.

Advil PM Review: The Bottom Line

Advil PM is more of an anti-pain, anti-inflammatory product than a sleep aid. Yes, it can help you with sleep thanks to its antihistamines, but these are not the healthiest long-term solution in my opinion. 

And, realistically, the same story is with the joint pain department. While ibuprofen is highly effective at reducing pain, do you want to take it daily long-term? If your issue is occasional joint pain or an occasional sleepless night, then sure, Advil PM could be useful.

But for anything other than that, this product doesn’t score as high as other, healthier supplements that are available on the market.

What do we recommend?

See Our Top 3 Highest-Rated Sleep Aids


The Top 3 Best-Reviewed Joint Supplements

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