Benadryl, which is the brand formulation of diphenhydramine, is a cough medicine that is available in oral and topical form (med that has to be applied only on a particular area).The medicine was approved by FDA for McNeil consumer healthcare in the year 1946.
This medication is usually marketed as an over-the-counter medicine by Johnson & Johnson. It is also available under various brand names in many countries as a medication to treat motion sickness and to provide a good quality sleep.
Benadryl is mostly used to treat symptoms like runny nose, sneezing and itching in throat or nose. The medicine can also be taken when the person experiences same effects as a result of common cold. The active ingredient diphenhydramine blocks the chemical histamine that occurs naturally in the body. The topical form of this medication is available in cream, gel and spray type and it can be used to reduce itching caused by normal bites from insects and irritation caused by sun burn.
Dosage and Administration
Benadryl capsules come in dosage strengths of 50 mg and 25 mg. 25 mg capsules contain 25 milligrams of diphenhydramine. It has to be taken as a whole when it is taken in the form of tablet. When it is given in the form of syrup to children parents are supposed to give half of the normal dose per teaspoon. When taken as a pill, nearly 1 or 2 pills can be taken a day. For children who refuse to take tablets, 1 to 2 tea spoons of the syrup can be given.
People taking Benadryl syrup are suggested to consume them only with the measuring cup provided with the medicine. The prescription is given only upon consulting a doctor and that is the safest way to deal with a medicine.
Benadryl can also be taken by pregnant women as it is found not to interact with the development of the baby. But this has to be done only after consulting a doctor. But nursing women are not advised to take this as newborn babies are so sensitive and vulnerable to the medicine.
Common side effects that occur while taking this medicine are sleeping for a time that is longer than usual, headaches and dry mouth or throat. When severe side effects like difficulty in breathing or change in vision happen it is better for a person to stop taking the medicine and consult his physician immediately.
Relative Contraindications to Benadryl
The drugs that interact with the medication are doxepin, aspirin, diazepam, lorazepam, alprazolam and other medications that contain the active ingredient diphenhydramine. So it is advised to consult a doctor before taking any of the aforesaid drugs together with this drug.
Do not take Benadryl if you are suffering from certain health ailments like High Blood Pressure, Overactive Thyroid Gland, Increased Pressure in the Eye, difficulty in bowel movement, Stenosing Peptic Ulcer, Enlarged Prostate, Closed Angle Glaucoma and Blockage of Urinary Bladder
If you have decided to take Benadryl tablets, then it is a must that you should not consume alcohol even to a very shorter amount. Taking alcohol along with this medication would interact and might change the way this drug works.