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Over the Counter Allergy Medication

An allergy is triggered when the human body identifies something as an “invader” and mounts a protective attack against it via the immune system. This is generally via the production of histamines, one of the many antibodies that your immune system can produce. For allergy sufferers, histamine production may be triggered in reaction to a food or food component (such as a coloring), a substance such as latex, or even dust, pollens, or medications. Millions of people suffer from some sort of allergy, and many of them can relieve their symptoms by the use of an over the counter allergy medication.

Over the counter allergy medications may include antihistamines, which block the production of histamines or decongestants. Some prescription-only allergy medications include corticosteroids, epinephrine, or immunotherapy. These are typically used for more severe allergic reactions; over the counter allergy medications are appropriate for mild, infrequent symptoms. All allergy medications, whether over the counter or prescription, may produce side effects, and people should be aware of these. Women who are pregnant or may become pregnant and people taking other medications or supplements should seek the advice of a doctor before starting an over the counter allergy medication.

Allergy medications come in a wide variety of forms, including pills, inhalers, creams, nasal sprays, and injections. Most of the over the counter allergy medications are available as pills and nasal sprays. Some popular brands include Claritin, Zyrtec, Benadryl, Tylenol Sinus and Alavert. Many are available in a strength that provides 4-hour relief or longer-acting formulations: some as long as 24 hours. Keep in mind that the 4-hour dosage tends to begin working faster than the longer-lasting doses.

Side effects of over the counter allergy medications can include drowsiness (very common), dry mouth, constipation, and an increase in eye pressure. As a result of eye pressure as a side effect, many allergy medications are contraindicated in people with glaucoma, and people with glaucoma should consult a doctor prior to beginning any type of allergy regimen. Women that are pregnant, may become pregnant, or who are nursing should consult a physician before using over the counter allergy medications or any other treatment for allergies.

Nasal sprays are available over the counter. They should be used exactly as described on the packaging. The maximum length of use is generally three days. People who have used over the counter nasal sprays to treat allergy symptoms for longer than three days have reported ‘rebound swelling’ of the nose that has been difficult to eradicate.

People using over the counter allergy medications should avoid driving or operating heavy machinery when they first start a new medication or switch medications. This is because the first week or so of using allergy medications usually produces the most drowsiness. Your body will usually adjust to the medication and you won’t feel the drowsiness after a few days.

Different people react differently to the various formulations of allergy medication. If you try Claritin and it doesn’t work for you, try switching to Zyrtec, Alavert, or one of the other over the counter allergy medications. You’ll find one that works perfectly for what you need.

Allergy and Sinus

Aerius Allergy 24 Hour Tablets
Aerius Allergy Kids' Syrup
Aerius Dual Action 12 Hour
Allegra - 12 Hour Relief Tablets / 24 Hour Relief Tablets
Allegra D
Allernix Caps
Allernix Elixir
Allernix Plus Caplets
AnaTote Allergy Pen Case
AnaTote Large Belt 26"-44"
Balminil Nasal Decongestant Spray
Benadryl Allergy Children's Bubble Gum Liquid
Benadryl Allergy Liqui Gels
Benadryl Caplets
Benadryl Elixir
Benadryl Extra Strength Liqui Gels
Benadryl Extra Strength Total Allergy and Sinus Caplets
Benadryl Itch Relief Cream
Benadryl Itch Spray
Benadryl Itch Stick
Benadryl Nightime Allergy
Benylin Cold and Sinus Plus Caplets
Chlor Tripolon Allergy - Extra Strength / Regular Strength
Chlor Tripolon Day and Night
Claritin Allergy 24 Hour Relief
Claritin Allergy and Sinus 12 Hour Tablets
Claritin Allergy and Sinus Extra Strength 24 Hour Caplets
Claritin Allergy Rapid Dissolve Tongue Tablets
Claritin Allergy Tablets
Claritin Kids Fruit Liquid
Claritin Nasal Pump
Claritin Skin Itch Relief Cream
Claritin Tablets
Cromolyn 2% Opthalmic Solution Eye Drops
Cromolyn Opthalmic Solution Clip Strip
DayQuil Cold and Flu Liqui Caps
DayQuil PE Liquid
DayQuil Sinus Liqui Caps
Desitin Maximum Strength Original Paste
Diphenhydramine Elixir
Dristan Long Lasting Nasal Mist
Dristan Mentholated Long Lasting Nasal Spray
Dristan Nasal Mist
Dristan Non Drowsy Multisymptom Cold Caplets
Dristan Sinus Colds
Dristan Sinus Colds Extra Strength
HydraSense Congestion Relief
HydraSense Congestion Relief Kids
HydraSense Gentle Mist
HydraSense Isotonic Full Stream
HydraSense Medium Stream
HydraSense Nasal Aspirator Filter
HydraSense Nasal Aspirator Plus
HydraSense Ultra Gentle Mist Baby Nasal Spray
Little Allergies Allergen Block
Otrivin Complete Nasal Spray with Measured Dose Pump
Otrivin Decongestant Nasal Spray
Otrivin Decongestant Nose Drops
Otrivin Nasal Spray Adult
Otrivin Nasal Spray with Measured Dose Pump
Otrivin Saline Spray
Otrivin Saline with Moisturizers Nasal Mist
Otrivin with Moisturizers Decongestant Nasal Spray
Otrivin with Moisturizers Nasal Spray
Otrivin with Moisturizers Pediatric Nose Drops
Otrivin with Moisturizers Pump
PMS Artificial Tears Extra
PMS Diphenhydramine
Reactine Allergy and Sinus
Reactine Extra Strength
Reactine Extra Strength Vial
Reactine Regular Strength
Rhinaris CS Anti Allergic Nasal Spary
Rhinaris Gel
Rhinaris Lubricating Nasal Mist
Rhinaris Saline Solution
Rhinaris Sinus Liquid
Secaris Nasal Gel
Simply Saline Allergy and Sinus Relief
Tylenol Allergy Multi Symptom Extra Strength
Tylenol Sinus Daytime
Tylenol Sinus Daytime Extra Strength
Tylenol Sinus Daytime/Nighttime Convenience Pack
Tylenol Sinus Extra Strength Daytime/Nighttime Convenience Pack
Tylenol Sinus Nighttime Extra Strength
Tylenol Sinus Regular Strength
Vicks VapoSteam Personal Inhaler V1300-CAN

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