What is Benadryl: Dosage, Side Effects, How to Use

What is Benadryl: Dosage, Side Effects, How to Use

What is Benadryl

Benadryl is also used to treat motion sickness, to induce sleep, and to treat certain symptoms of Parkinson's illness.

Benadryl (diphenhydramine) is an antihistamine that decreases the effects of natural chemical histamine in the body. Histamine can make up symptoms of sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and runny nose.

Diphenhydramine is used to treat sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes, skin rash, itching, and other cold or allergy symptoms.

Diphenhydramine is also used to treat motion sickness, to induce sleep, and to treat certain symptoms of Parkinson's disease.

Diphenhydramine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

This medication works by blocking a certain natural substance (histamine) that your body makes during an allergic reaction. Its drying effects on such symptoms as watery eyes and runny nose are caused by blocking another natural substance made by your body (acetylcholine).

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How to Use Benadryl

Use diphenhydramine exactly as directed on the label, or as suggested by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Cold or allergy medicine is usually taken only for a short time until your symptoms go away.

Do not give diphenhydramine to a child younger than 2 years old. Always talk to a doctor before giving a cough or cold medicine to a child. Death can happen from the misuse of cough and cold medicines in very young children. You should not use diphenhydramine to make a child go to sleep.

For motion sickness, take diphenhydramine 30 minutes before you will be in a situation that causes you motion sickness (such as a long car ride, airplane or boat travel, amusement park rides, etc). Continue taking diphenhydramine with meals and at bedtime for the rest of the time you will be in a motion-sickness condition.

As a sleep aid, take diphenhydramine within 30 minutes before bedtime.

Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 7 days of treatment, or if you have a fever with a headache, cough, or skin rash.

This medication can affect the results of allergy skin tests. Tell any doctor who cures you that you are using diphenhydramine.

Keep at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Follow all directions on the product package. If your doctor has prescribed this drug, take it as directed. If you are not sure about any of the information, talk to your doctor.

Take the tablet, capsule, or liquid form by mouth with or without food. Measure liquid forms of this medication using a special measuring device/spoon. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose. If you have a single-dose form of this medication (such as a single-use whistle), you do not need to measure the dose.

The rapidly-dissolving tablet or strip should be allowed to dissolve on the tongue and then swallowed, with or without water.

The dosage is based on your age, medical condition, and response to cure. There are many brands and forms of diphenhydramine available. Read the dosing instructions very carefully for each product because the amount of diphenhydramine may be different between products. Do not increase your dose or take this medication more often than directed.

To prevent motion sickness, take your dose 30 minutes before starting activity such as travel. To help you sleep, take your dose about 30 minutes before bedtime. If you continue to have difficulty sleeping for longer than 2 weeks, contact your doctor.

Tell your doctor if your condition does not change or if it worsens.

Dosage of Benadryl

Each Benadryl tablet and liquid-filled capsule contains 25 milligrams (mg) of diphenhydramine.

Children’s Benadryl liquid has 12.5 mg per teaspoon.

If you are using a Benadryl capsule, you should not open the capsule; instead, swallow it completely.

If you are using Benadryl liquid, do not use a kitchen teaspoon to measure a dose. Use the measuring cup that comes with the drug.

Symptoms of overdose Benadryl

If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, the doctor must be informed immediately. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. Symptoms of overdose may include: nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, sweating, stomach/abdominal pain, extreme tiredness, agitation, confusion, flushing, hallucinations, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine, seizures. In children, excitement may occur first, and may be followed by: loss of coordination, drowsiness, loss of consciousness, seizures.


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Side effects of Benadryl

Many medications can cause side effects. A side effect is an unwanted response to a medication when it is used in normal doses. Side effects can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent.

You should tell your doctor about any side effects from Benadryl and other diphenhydramine products. Drowsiness, dizziness, constipation, stomach upset, blurred vision, or dry mouth/nose/throat may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

The side effects listed below are not experienced by everyone who uses this drug. If you are concerned about side effects, discuss the risks and benefits of this medication with your doctor.

The following side effects have been reported by at least 1% of people using this medication. Many of these side effects can be controlled, and some may go away on their own by passing of the time.

Contact your doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe or bothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects.

•             nausea

•             nervousness

•             restlessness

•             ringing in the ears

•             thickening of mucus

•             trouble sleeping

•             constipation

•             dry mouth

•             drowsiness

•             dizziness

•             excitation (especially in children)

Drugs that may interact with Benadryl

Always tell your doctor or pharmacist about any drugs you take, including prescription drugs, other OTC drugs, and any vitamins, dietary supplements, illegal or recreational drugs, or herbal remedies.

There may be an interaction between diphenhydramine and any of the following:

•             aclidinium

•             alcohol

•             alfuzosin

•             amiodarone

•             amphetamines (e.g., dextroamphetamine, lisdexamphetamine)

•             antipsychotics (e.g., chlorpromazine, clozapine, haloperidol, olanzapine, quetiapine, risperidone)

•             atropine

•             azelastine

•             barbiturates (e.g., butalbital, pentobarbital, phenobarbital)

•             belladonna

•             benzodiazepines (e.g., alprazolam, diazepam, lorazepam)

•             benztropine

•             betahistine

•             botulinum toxin

•             brimonidine

•             buprenorphine

•             buspirone

•             cannabis

•             chloral hydrate

•             chloroquine

•             darifenacin

•             disopyramide

•             dofetilide

•             domperidone

•             donepezil

•             dronedarone

•             efavirenz

•             flavoxate

•             flecainide

•             galantamine

•             glucagon

•             glycopyrrolate

•             hyaluronidase

•             ipratropium

•             ketotifen

•             macrolide antibiotics (e.g., clarithromycin, erythromycin)

•             methadone

•             mifepristone

•             mirabegron

•             mirtazapine

•             muscle relaxants (e.g., baclofen, cyclobenzaprine, methocarbamol, orphenadrine)

•             nabilone

•             narcotic pain relievers (e.g., codeine, fentanyl, morphine, oxycodone)

•             olopatadine

•             other antihistamines (e.g,. cetirizine, doxylamine, hydroxyzine, loratadine)

•             oxybutynin

•             potassium supplements (e.g., potassium chloride, salt substitutes that contain potassium)

•             pramipexole

•             procainamide

•             quinidine

•             quinine

•             quinolone antibiotics (e.g., ciprofloxacin, ofloxacin, sparfloxacin)

•             rilpivirine

•             rivastigmine

•             ropinirole

•             rotigotine

•             saquinavir

•             scopolamine

•             seizure medications (e.g., clobazam, carbamazepine, levetiracetam, phenobarbital, phenytoin, primidone, topiramate, valproic acid, zonisamide)

•             serotonin antagonists (anti-emetic medications; e.g., dolasetron, granisetron, ondansetron)

•             solifenacin

•             sotalol

•             tetrabenazine

•             thalidomide

•             thiazide diuretics (water pills; e.g., hydrochlorothiazide, indapamide, metolazone)

•             tiotropium

•             tolterodine

•             tranylcypromine

•             trazodone

•             tricyclic antidepressants (e.g., amitriptyline, clomipramine, desipramine, trimipramine)

•             umeclidinium

•             zolpidem

•             zopiclone

Using Benadryl while pregnancy

While the evidence indicates it's safe to use Benadryl and other diphenhydramine products during pregnancy, ask your doctor or pharmacist before you take it if you are or could be pregnant.

Also, do not take Benadryl while you are breastfeeding without first asking your doctor.

If a child is younger than 6, check with a doctor before giving the child Benadryl.

Warnings of Benadryl

Before you begin using a d, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.


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