20 Dec 2010 Antihistamines are commonly used tables for treating allergic symptoms like rash, hives, hay fever, runny nose, watery eyes, itching, and sneezing etc. These are allergies or the common cold problems faced by many and most anti histamine drugs can be purchased over the counter . These tablets can also used to treat motion sickness, anxiety, or as a sleep aid (for insomnia).
The tablets are needed to be taken with milk or food if there is stomach upset problem. It is also recommended to take the capsule as a whole instead of chewing or crushing the tablet because crushing will destroy the long action and may increase side effects. For chewable antihistamine tablets, chew thoroughly and swallow. For liquid syrup, shake it well before taking.
Certain side effects are common while consuming such tablets like as drowsiness, headache, dizziness, loss of appetite, stomach upset, irritability, vision changes, dry mouth and nose. As the body adjusts to the medication, these effects subside. For other problems like breathing difficulties, pounding or irregular heartbeat, difficulty urinating, ringing in the ears, consult your doctor.
Precautions using Anti Histamines Before consuming anti histamine tablets, give an idea to your doctor about your medical history, especially if you had faced problems earlier like glaucoma (narrow angle), enlarged prostate, stomach ulcers, heart disease, seizures, lung problems, high blood pressure, overactive thyroid. While taking the medicine, change from a seated or lying position to avoid dizziness. Be careful in doing activities requiring alertness. For instance, you should never drive after taking an anti histamine tablet. Limit alcohol intake to avoid drowsiness. Elderly persons should be very careful while consuming antihistamines as they are more sensitive to the effects of the drug. Do not give long-acting antihistamines to a child younger than 6 years of age without doctor approval. This drug should not be used during pregnancy. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Your doctor should have knowledge of all the other medications you may use (both prescription and nonprescription), like sleeping pills, tranquilizers, sedatives, muscle relaxants, depression medication, narcotic pain relievers, seizure medications, other medications for hay fever, colds or allergies. Because this medication may affect allergy testing, you have to stop using this medication for few days before the tests are performed. Though this medicine can be purchased without a doctor's prescription, it is better to take the doctor or pharmacist approval.
If you miss a dose, take as soon as you remembered and if it is almost at the same time for the next dose, then it is better to skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not "double-up" the dose to catch up.