Best Overall: Allegra Adult Non
Provides relief within an hour
Non-drowsy unlike other antihistamines
Soothes both indoor and outdoor allergies
Might not work for everybody
When it comes to treating allergies, there’s one ingredient that is head and shoulders above the rest.
The best allergy medications are antihistamines, says Allergist with Allergy & Asthma Network Dr. Purvi Parikh. If your eyes are starting to itch or your nose is running, the antihistamine in the Allegra Adult 24-Hour Allergy Relief can help make you feel better in as little as one hour. Beyond the pills record-breaking relief, it includes fexofenadine, a special non-drowsy antihistamine ingredient that wont affect your energy levels. All in all, its great to know that this medicine can provide 24 hours of relief without getting in the way of your day.
How Antihistamines Treat Allergies
When your body comes into contact with whatever your allergy trigger is — pollen, ragweed, pet dander, or dust mites, for example — it makes chemicals called histamines. They cause the tissue in your nose to swell , your nose and eyes to run, and your eyes, nose, and sometimes mouth to itch. Sometimes you may also get an itchy rash on your skin, called hives.
To treat nasal congestion, your doctor may recommend a . Some medicines combine an antihistamine and .
Can I Take Allegra Everyday
Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!
Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!
HealthTap doctors are based in the U.S., board certified, and available by text or video.
Don’t Miss: Zyrtec Allergy Meds
Are There Side Effects Associated With Oral Medications For Allergies
Oral medications for allergies include antihistamines, decongestants, and leukotriene receptor antagonists. The side effects depend on the type of medication. Side effects of antihistamines may include dry mouth, constipation, drowsiness, difficulty urinating, fatigue, headache, nausea, and sore throat.
For decongestants , headache, dizziness, dry mouth, irritability, rapid or irregular heartbeat, tremor, increase in blood pressure, and trouble sleeping may occur.
For the class of medication called leukotriene receptor antagonists , common side effects include diarrhea, stomach pain, flu-like symptoms, headache, thirst, itchy skin, and rash.
Medication And Functional Medicine
Talk to an AAPRI health care provider about the different treatment options we offer. Medication is an option, but most prescriptions are designed to relieve symptoms not fix the problem causing those symptoms. Thats why we offer immunotherapy treatment such as allergy shots or allergy drops. We can also suggest natural supplements that can mitigate symptoms without drowsiness. Thats also why we focus on functional medicine: we want to get to the root of the problem, not mask it.
You May Like: Zyrtec Sinus Medicine
Is It Better To Take Zyrtec In The Morning Or At Night
It depends on whether you experience any side effects, says Robert Eitches, MD, an allergist at Tower Allergy. If your problems are only during the day time and you aren’t really prone to side effects, then go ahead and take it during the day.
But if you experience side effects like drowsiness, Dr. Eitches recommends taking your dose at night before bed. “That way you wake up in the morning relatively clearer, too,” he says. If it makes you sleepy, the side effect will have likely worn off by the time you wake up, and since the medication can provide relief for 24 hours, you’ll still experience relief during the day.
Can I Use Nasal Sprays And Oral Medications At The Same Time For My Allergies
Yes. Sometimes using only one type of medication will not provide enough control over allergy symptoms. Nasal sprays provide a local effect and so work to relieve the nasal symptoms of allergies. If you also have other symptoms , an oral medication may help relieve them. So, the combination of a nasal spray with an oral medication may help control most or all allergy symptoms. Talk to your doctor about what is right for you.
Read Also: Almond Flavoring And Nut Allergies
Can I Take Allergy Tablet Twice A Day
If you are taking more than one dose, keep it between 10 and 12 hours. It is a good idea to start the day with one, and end it with one before bedtime. For children between 2 and 5 years of age, the dose is two. The dose is twice daily. The right dose will be determined by the childs weight or age between the ages of 1 and 2.
How Are Antihistamines Classified
Antihistamines are divided into two major subtypes. The first subtype is called H-1 receptor antagonists or H-1 blockers. This subtype of antihistamines is used to treat allergy symptoms. The second subtype is called H-2 receptor antagonists or H-2 blockers. They are used to treat gastrointestinal conditions, including gastroesophageal reflux disease , peptic ulcers, gastritis, motion sickness, nausea and vomiting. The naming structure tells doctors and scientists the cell type the location of the histamine receptor that the antihistamine medication blocks.
The H-1 blocker subtype is further broken down into two groups first-generation antihistamines and second-generation antihistamines.
Recommended Reading: Penicillin Side Effects Drowsiness
Best For Pet Allergies: Xyzal Allergy Tablet
Maximum strength for severe allergies of all kinds
Eases pet dander irritations
Better for those under their 60s
Can cause drowsiness
No matter how much you love your furry friends, life isnt going to be easy if youre allergic to them. You can give yourself some relief by taking the Xyzal Allergy Relief Tablets that were made to alleviate symptoms associated with animal dander allergies.
Unless youre willing to get rid of your pet, many say this is the only thing that works. Additionally, Parikh suggests keeping the pet out of your bedroom and getting a HEPA air purifier.
How Does This Medication Work What Will It Do For Me
Cetirizine belongs to the class of medications called second-generation antihistamines, specifically the class known as histamine receptor antagonists. For adults and children 2 years of age and older, it is used for the relief of symptoms associated with seasonal allergies including sneezing itchy nose and throat stuffy and runny nose and tearing, red, or itchy eyes. It is also used for the relief of symptoms associated with allergic skin conditions such as itchy skin and hives. For adults and children over the age of 12 years, it is also used for the relief of symptoms associated with year-round allergies and hives.
Cetirizine works by blocking the actions of one of the body’s natural chemicals known as histamine. Histamine is responsible for many of the symptoms caused by allergies.
Cetirizine usually starts to relieve allergy symptoms within 20 minutes and lasts for 24 hours.
This medication may be available under multiple brand names and/or in several different forms. Any specific brand name of this medication may not be available in all of the forms or approved for all of the conditions discussed here. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.
Recommended Reading: Mayo Allergy
What Antihistamine Is Right For You
You can buy many different brands and forms of antihistamines without a prescription.
- Some work for only 4 to 6 hours, while others last for 12 to 24 hours.
- Some are combined with a decongestant, a drug that dries up your nasal passages.
Ask your health care provider what type of antihistamine and what exact dosage is right for you or your child. Make sure you understand how much to use and how many times a day to use it. Be sure to read the label carefully. Or ask your pharmacist if you have questions.
- Some antihistamines cause less sleepiness than others. These include cetirizine , desloratadine , fexofenadine , and loratadine .
- Do not drink alcohol when you are taking antihistamines.
- Store antihistamines at room temperature, away from heat, direct light, and moisture.
- Do not freeze antihistamines.
- Keep all medicines where children cannot reach them.
How Do I Know Which Otc Allergy Medicine Is Right For Me
When determining which type of OTC allergy medication is right for you, consider your worst allergy symptoms.
There is a lot of crossover among the different categories, but in the most simple terms, antihistamines are best for itchy, sneezy noses and help itchy eyes, says Dr. Passer. Nasal sprays are best for congestion and post nasal drainage, but help itch quite a bit, too, and decongestants help with congestion. OTC eye drops are best for eye symptoms.
I dont think there is any differentiation between the medication categories for pollen versus, say, indoor allergens like dust or dog dander, she adds. It really is all the same process in the bodyit just comes from different sources.
You May Like: Allergy Medicine Active Ingredient
What Other Drugs Could Interact With This Medication
There may be an interaction between cetirizine and any of the following:
- acetylcholinesterase inhibitors
- other antihistamines
- “azole” antifungals
- hepatitis C antivirals
- macrolide antibiotics
- muscle relaxants
- narcotic pain medications
- potassium supplements
- seizure medications
- selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
- sodium oxybate
- thiazide diuretics
- tricyclic antidepressants
- tyrosine kinase inhibitors
When Is It Time To Try A Different Allergy Medication
Its not unusual for people to say their medication has worn off midway through allergy season. Many people believe its because theyve developed a tolerance to their regimen, but this is most likely not the case, as its not common for people to develop a resistance to these medications.
So then why is your allergy medication suddenly not working as well? Well, there are several possible reasons, including a change to the type of pollen in the environment, your body developing a new allergy, and changes to your stress levels. Its also possible youre not using your medication correctly, especially when it comes to nasal sprays, which take some practice to use properly.
But if you know youre using your medication appropriately, youve lowered your stress levels, and youre taking steps to avoid being exposed to pollen and other allergens, then it might be time to change medications. Sometimes, all you need to do is try another medication within the same class, such as switching from Claritin to Allegra or changing from Flonase to Nasacort. If that doesnt seem to help, its time to see your primary care provider or an allergy specialist.
Recommended Reading: How Long Does Zyrtec Take To Start Working
Nasal Steroids Side Effects
Serious side effects with nasal steroid sprays are rare because very little of these medicines are actually absorbed by the body. They do, however, carry the risk of nasal tissue inflammation. Thats why its important to have regular check-ups with a provider when using these medications for long periods of time.
Whats The Difference Between First
Just like the name implies, the first generation antihistamine were the first type approved by the Food and Drug Administration . They began to be approved in the United States in the 1930s and are still prescribed today.
They work on histamine receptor in the brain and spinal cord along with other types of receptors. Most notable about this generation of antihistamines is that they cross the blood-brain barrier, which results in drowsiness.
Second-generation antihistamines were approved by the FDA and first came to market in the 1980s. The second-generation antihistamines do not cross the blood-brain barrier to the extent that first-generation do and therefore do not cause drowsiness at standard dosage levels. Second-generation antihistamines are considered to be safer than first generation antihistamines because they dont cause drowsiness and interact with fewer drugs.
Recommended Reading: Is Claritin Good For Itchy Skin
Zyrtec Side Effects To Be Aware Of
If you’ve ever slept 14 hours after popping a Benadryl, you’re well aware that some allergy meds can seriously knock you out. That’s not as common with Zyrtec, but 11 to 14 percent of people do report feeling sleepy after taking it, making it the most common side effect reported, says Boomershine.
Since the effects of Zyrtec last 24 hours, drowsiness can hit at any time. Avoid alcohol and be careful about driving if the med hits you with the sleepies, per the Zyrtec site.
Its annoying to feel as if youve inhaled a mouthful of sand. Less than 10 percent of Zyrtec poppers will wind up with a dry mouth, says Boomershine. When you have an allergic response, your tissues secrete more fluid , and antihistamines dry you up. She says that drinking water will help, as will switching to an alcohol-free mouthwash if youre using one that has alcohol in it, as that ingredient also dries you out.
Dizziness can be a rare potential side effect and may disappear after your body adjusts to the medication, per The Mayo Clinic. Give it time, but always check in with your doctor if youre concerned. And, just like drowsiness, hold off on driving if youre getting dizzy spells.
While Zyrtec may make adults sleepy, it can turn kids into little insomniacs, says Boomershine. Having them take the long-acting med earlier in the day wont help either since it lasts all day. Talk to their pediatrician about making a switch.
Who Can Take Antihistamines
Most people can safely take antihistamines.
But speak to a pharmacist or GP for advice if you:
- are pregnant or breastfeeding
- have an underlying health condition, such as heart disease, liver disease, kidney disease or epilepsy
Some antihistamines may not be suitable in these cases. A pharmacist or doctor can recommend one that’s best for you.
Always check the leaflet that comes with your medicine to see if it’s safe for you before taking it or giving it to your child.
Also Check: Twix Ingredients Allergy
What Questions Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider
- What type of antihistamine would work best for me?
- How do I proper take the prescribed antihistamine?
- What side effects might occur with the recommended medication?
- What antihistamine wont interfere with the current medications I am taking?
- When, or for what conditions, does taking an antihistamine that would make me drowsy make sense?
- Can I live my life normally while using this medication? Can I drive? Can I operate heavy machinery?
- Can I take antihistamines if I am pregnant, planning to become pregnancy or am breastfeeding?
- Can antihistamines be safely given to my child?
- What are the consequences if I dont take an antihistamine to help with my allergies?
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Histamine is on your side. The chemical does its best to regulate help your heart and lungs and protect your body from foreign allergens, among other roles. But it can be oversensitive, and it can overreact, and thats where antihistamines can help. If youre have allergies, stomach symptoms or any of the other conditions and symptoms mentioned in this article, talk to your healthcare provider about your options. Your symptoms may be able to be treated.
Always check with your healthcare provider and your pharmacist if you have concerns about antihistamines, and always follow the directions on the labels!
What Is A Histamine
Histamine is a natural chemical produced by your body and is important in helping your body with its daily function2,3. Histamines often get a bad reputation as the culprit of your allergy symptoms. While your body does this to defend itself, the overreaction can lead to symptoms like itchy and watery eyes, runny nose, sneezing and itchy nose or throat. Click here to learn more about histamines and the symptoms they cause.
Don’t Miss: Is Zyrtec An Antihistamine Or Decongestant
Allergy Medication Side Effects
Older antihistamines are associated with drowsiness, dizziness, constipation, upset stomach, blurry vision, a dry mouth/nose and throat, and difficulty urinating. The newer antihistamines are usually well tolerated but can cause drowsiness, dry mouth, and stomach problems.
Mast cell stabilizers can cause a short-lived stinging sensation inside the nose.
Nasal decongestants may cause a temporary burning, stinging, or dryness in the nose, a runny nose, and sneezing. Oral decongestants may cause dizziness, headache, nervousness, fast heartbeat, increased blood pressure, loss of appetite, and sleep problems.
Topical corticosteroids for skin allergies can cause burning, itching, redness, and changes to skin color and thinning of skin.
Topical immunomodulators for skin allergies may cause stinging, burning, irritation, and itching at the application site. They may also cause headache and flu symptoms.