What Side Effects Are Possible With This Medication
Many medications can cause side effects. A side effect is an unwanted response to a medication when it is taken in normal doses. Side effects can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent.
The side effects listed below are not experienced by everyone who takes this medication. 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 taking this medication. Many of these side effects can be managed, and some may go away on their own over 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.
- increased blood pressure
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
- signs of a serious allergic reaction
Some people may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries you while you are taking this medication.
Can I Compare Prescription Prices Before Filling My Allergy Medicine
The majority of allergy medications are now available over the counter. This means that many insurance plans no longer cover your allergy medicine. If your insurance does not cover your medication, you can use a prescription savings card to get the lowest prescription price. You can save up to 80% or more off the retail price by using the ScriptSave® WellRx discount card at a pharmacy near you.
Rosanna Sutherby is a freelance medical writer who has been a practicing pharmacist in her community for close to 20 years. She obtained her Doctor of Pharmacy from Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. She utilizes her clinical training in the pharmacy, where she helps patients manage disease states such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, and many others. Dr. Sutherby reviews and recommends drug regimens based on patients concurrent conditions and potential drug interactions.
What Can Uncontrolled High Blood Pressure Do
If the blood pressure rises sufficiently, it can lead to stroke, heart failure, heart attack, and kidney failure. It is vital to keep your blood pressure down, to measure it regularly to monitor your success in doing so, and to make an appointment with your physician to diagnose and monitor elevated blood pressure.
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Why High Blood Pressure And Cold Meds Dont Mix
Cold medicines are not off-limits if you have heart disease, but patients with high blood pressure, or hypertension, should check the label carefully when choosing a cold or allergy medicine.
Thats because decongestants such as pseudoephedrine, ephedrine, phenylephrine, naphazoline and oxymetazoline can increase your blood pressure and heart rate. Make sure the cold or allergy medication you plan to take is free of those ingredients.
For allergy sufferers with heart disease, medicines such as Allegra, Zyrtec or Claritin should be safe. However, medicines containing decongestants including Allegra-D, Zyrtec-D and Claritin-D could increase your blood pressure and heart rate or interfere with your heart medication.
Side Effects Of Antihistamines
Like all medicines, antihistamines can cause side effects.
Side effects of antihistamines that make you drowsy can include:
- sleepiness and reduced co-ordination, reaction speed and judgement do not drive or use machinery after taking these antihistamines
- dry mouth
- feeling sick
- drowsiness although this is less common than with older types of antihistamines
Check the leaflet that comes with your medicine for a full list of possible side effects and advice about when to get medical help.
If you think your medicine has caused an unwanted side effect, you can report it through the Yellow Card Scheme.
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Alternative Methods For Controlling Allergies
If you continue to suffer from allergy symptoms but can’t take allergy medications because of high blood pressure or other heart problems, there are other ways you can help mitigate the sneezing, sniffling, coughing, and watery eyes that allergies can trigger.
Consider these allergy-control methods:
- Run a dehumidifier, because mold loves moisture.
- Use allergen-reducing bedding such as mattress and pillow protectors.
- Try a saline nasal spray or wash to reduce nasal congestion.
What Other Treatments Can I Try For Allergies
If you are concerned about side effects or drug interactions, there are alternative treatments.
Allergy sprays can be an effective treatment option. Nasal corticosteroids are safe for daily use, and dont cause systemic side effects or interactions that daily pills can.
Certain supplements may alleviate symptoms. Research suggests quercetin, a bioflavonoid derived from plant sources, helps inhibit histamine release. works best when started 2-3 weeks prior to allergy season. Continue to take it throughout the season, says , a holistic health practitioner and naturologist. Vitamin C, bromelain, butterbur, and apple cider vinegar may also help to boost your immune system so it can better respond to allergens.
Lifestyle changes such as reducing your exposure to allergy triggers or using a HEPA air filter can help to reduce your reaction during peak allergy season.
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Allergy Medications And Hypertension
Allergic rhinitis, or hay fever, is a common condition in the United States. The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology reports that 8 to 10 percent of Americans in all age groups have hay fever. Moreover, the incidence of allergies appears to be increasing. If you have hay fever and you are like most allergy sufferers, you’ve probably used over-the-counter or prescription medications to relieve your symptoms. However, if you also have high blood pressure, you may want to avoid taking some allergy medications.
Benadryl And High Blood Pressure: Not A Good Combo
What about Benadryl and high blood pressure? Should you take Benadryl if you have high blood pressure? Probably not. What you should do is seek your doctor’s approval before taking this medication.
It is not necessarily safe to take if you have high blood pressure. Why?
Benadryl is an antihistamine called Diphenhydramine. It is often used to treat allergies and hay fever, and may be used to treat the common cold. It works well at helping to reduce itchy eyes and to improve runny noses and sneezing.
However, it is not necessarily effective or safe to use if you have high blood pressure.
The largest problem with taking Benadryl or any other product made of this substance is that it can cause a spike in your heart rate.
When the heart is working harder and faster, this means there is added pressure in the arteries. For those who have high blood pressure, which is pressure that is over 120/80, the risk here is substantial.
There is already too much pressure in the arteries. By increasing with Benadryl or similar cough and cold medications, you simply worsen the conditions. If you do have a cold or have allergies, contact your doctor to request a solution for your condition.
Generally, there are some prescriptions and over the counter medications that can be helpful, such as Claritin that can work to help improve allergy and cold symptoms.
Nevertheless, get your doctor’s approval before using Benadryl or similar medications.
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Can I Take My Prescription Antihistamine With Other Medicines
You shouldnt take prescription antihistamines if you also are taking certain other prescription medicines. These include erythromycin or certain medicines used to treat fungal infections. These include itraconazole or ketoconazole. When your doctor gives you a prescription, always ask if its safe to use with the other medicines youre taking. Your pharmacist can also tell you what is safe to take. If you arent sure, ask the pharmacist or your doctor before taking another medicine.
Central Nervous System Toxicity
Rupatidine behaves like other second-generation antihistamines and is non-sedating. Even doses as high as 100 mg/kg in a series of tests in rats and mice failed to produce changes in ECG or motor activity .
No psychomotor impairment could be detected in humans at doses of up 20 mg. However, dose-dependent impairments were seen at higher doses. Hydroxyzine 25 mg and rupatadine 80 mg produced significant impairment of similar degree. The cognitive and psychomotor impairment produced by a single 10-mg oral dose of rupatadine in combination with ethanol was no greater than the impairment produced by ethanol alone, whilst a higher dose in combination with ethanol caused cognitive and psychomotor impairment comparable to that seen with hydroxyzine 25 mg and cetirizine even at therapeutic doses .
The effects of rupatadine on fitness to drive were investigated in a study on healthy subjects: at the recommended dose of 10 mg rupatadine, no differences could be seen compared to placebo .
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What About Herbal And Dietary Supplements
You can read on the Internet or hear advice in health food stores from nonphysicians about dozens of unproven herbs, vitamins, minerals, homeopathic products, and other dietary supplements that promise to help you control your blood pressure. Taking advice from such sources is fraught with danger, as they are not medically licensed to make such recommendations, and there is no OTC product that is proven safe or effective in lowering high blood pressure. Rather, you should seek care from a legitimate health care professional .
Remember, if you have questions, Consult Your Pharmacist.
Is Diphenhydramine Safe To Take If I’m Pregnant Or Breastfeeding
Diphenhydramine has not been adequately evaluated in pregnant women. It should be used only if the benefit outweighs the potential but unknown risks.
NURSING MOTHERS: Diphenhydramine is secreted in breast milk. Because of the risk of stimulation and seizures in infants, especially newborns and premature infants, antihistamines should not be used by nursing mothers.
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What Other Drugs Could Interact With This Medication
There may be an interaction between cetirizine – pseudoephedrine and any of the following:
- alpha blockers
- “azole” antifungals
- beta-2 agonists
- ergot alkaloids
- HIV non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors
- HIV protease inhibitors
- macrolide antibiotics
- magnesium sulfate
- monoamine oxidase inhibitors
- muscle relaxants
- narcotic pain relievers
- nasal decongestants
- selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
- serotonin/norephinephrine reuptake inhibitors
- St. John’s wort
- tricyclic antidepressasnts
If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your specific circumstances, your doctor may want you to:
- stop taking one of the medications,
- change one of the medications to another,
- change how you are taking one or both of the medications, or
- leave everything as is.
An interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of them. Speak to your doctor about how any drug interactions are being managed or should be managed.
Allergy Medication And Hypertension
Some allergy medicines can affect your blood pressure or interact with your blood pressure medication. Don’t fret! There are safe options out there for treating your allergy symptoms relative to your high blood pressure and we will review them here.
While most antihistamines are generally safe to take with your blood pressure medication, we want you to keep in mind the following drug interactions if you are taking medicines for your blood pressure:
- Fexofenadine and Carvedilol : This may increase the side effects of fexofenadine. You may want to use fexofenadine cautiously if you are taking carvedilol.
- Cetirizine and levocetirizine : If either of these drugs is combined with methyldopa , you may experience increased drowsiness.
- Diphenhydramine : Make sure to talk with your doctor before taking any diphenhydramine products because any product containing itmay counteract the effects of some blood pressure medications.
Second-generation antihistamines that are not combined with decongestants are generally safe to use if you arenot taking the blood pressure medicines listed in the section above. The same goes for intranasal corticosteroids. Second-generation antihistamines and intranasal corticosteroids include the following:
Antihistamine eye drops, such as Pataday and Zaditor , are also safe options for itchy and watery eyes.
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Do Antihistamines Cause Dementia
Long term use of some antihistamines may increase your risk of dementia. Diphenhydramine blocks the effects of a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine. This neurotransmitter is vital for memory and learning. Diphenhydramine increased the risk of dementia by 54% in one 3,000 patient study followed for seven years.
Can I Take Antihistamines If Im Pregnant Or Breastfeeding
Its safest to talk to your healthcare provider if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or are breastfeeding. Animal studies have shown that some antihistamines can cause birth defects. Small amounts of antihistamines pass on to your baby if you breastfeed. For these reasons your healthcare provider will want to talk with you and make careful choices if there is any concern for your or your childs safety.
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What Can You Do If Your Allergy Medication Is Not Working
Allergy shots, also known as immunotherapy, may eliminate or lessen allergy symptoms if medications are ineffective or intolerable. Immunotherapy works by reducing sensitivity to allergens. Each shot contains a small, but increasing, amount of allergen. This challenges the body to build up tolerance over time. The drawbacks to immunotherapy include use of shots, cost and the fact it may take many months to complete.
Who Needs Antihistamines
Antihistamines provide a wealth of benefits to people who suffer seasonal allergies, pet allergies, fabric or material allergies, and those suffering from the common cold or seasonal flu. Antihistamines block the action of histamines that create the runny nose, watery eyes, itching, and sneezing we can all live without.
But that is not all. Antihistamines have shown themselves potentially useful in treating a number of other conditions, including stomach ulcers, insomnia, anaphylactic shock , certain types of anxiety, and even morning sickness . Second and third-generation antihistamines have also broken down the historical barriers between antihistamines and the elderly. Those barriers were a product of first-gen antihistamines producing sometimes profound drowsiness. Succeeding generations of antihistamines have virtually eliminated this phenomenon.
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How Antihistamines Work
Antihistamines block the effects of a substance called histamine in your body.
Histamine is normally released when your body detects something harmful, such as an infection. It causes blood vessels to expand and the skin to swell, which helps protect the body.
But in people with allergies, the body mistakes something harmless such as pollen, animal hair or house dust for a threat and produces histamine. The histamine causes an allergic reaction with unpleasant symptoms including itchy, watering eyes, a running or blocked nose, sneezing and skin rashes.
Antihistamines help stop this happening if you take them before you come into contact with the substance you’re allergic to. Or they can reduce the severity of symptoms if you take them afterwards.
Path To Improved Health
You can take antihistamines in different ways depending on your symptoms. Some people take them only when they have symptoms. Others experience symptoms every day, so they take the antihistamine every day. Sometimes people take them before they are going to be exposed to something they are allergic to. This could include an animal or certain kinds of plants or flowers.
There are many different brands of antihistamines that you can buy over the counter. Some work in different ways. For example, some are designed to work for 4 to 6 hours. Others last for 12 to 24 hours. Make sure you read the label carefully. Follow the directions for how often to take the antihistamine.
Ask your doctor which OTC antihistamine is best for you based on your symptoms.
If you have severe allergies or allergies that affect you year-round, tell you doctor. It could be that you need a prescription allergy medication. The difference between these at OTCs is that prescription antihistamines can come in higher doses.
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Managing A Cold With Hypertension
If you cant take a decongestant because of high blood pressure, there are other ways to reduce your cold or allergy symptoms:
Take Coricidin HBP, which is free of decongestants
Drink plenty of fluids including water, juice, tea and soup to prevent dehydration and clear mucus from your lungs
Take a pain reliever such as Tylenol or Motrin for fever, sore throat, body aches and headache
Flush your sinuses with a saline spray to relieve nasal congestion
Soothe a sore or scratchy throat with lozenges
Use a vaporizer or humidifier if necessary to boost humidity
Get plenty of rest
Return to your doctor after five to seven days to make sure youre on the road to recovery
How Do I Know Which Antihistamine To Take
Because there are so many antihistamine products, both over-the-counter and prescription, and because they are used to treat so many different conditions, you may need help figuring out which medication to take. For minor ailments, you can probably take over-the-counter products. You can read the package labeling and match your symptoms to the labeled symptoms. Also, never hesitate to ask the pharmacist. They are highly schooled in the actions and effects and side effects of drugs. You may need to try different antihistamines to find the best medication to manage your symptoms.
If you need a prescription antihistamine, you and your healthcare provider will work together to figure out what medication will be best for you. Many drugs interact with antihistamines, so your healthcare provider will want to know what medical conditions you have and medications you are currently taking. They will also want to know if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant or are breastfeeding. Some antihistamines are not recommended in pregnancy because they may cause birth defects in very high doses. Antihistamines can pass into breast milk, so you should consult with your healthcare provider before using antihistamines if you are breastfeeding.
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