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Benadryl

Last reviewed on RxList: 4/22/2019
Benadryl Side Effects Center

Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

Last reviewed on RxList 4/22/2019

Benadryl (diphenhydramine) is an antihistamine used to treat allergies, hives, insomnia, motion sickness, and mild cases of Parkinsonism. Benadryl is available in generic form and over-the-counter (OTC). Common side effects of Benadryl include:

A typical dose of Benadryl is 25-50 mg every 4-6 hours. Benadryl may interact with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), other over-the-counter cough, cold, allergy, or insomnia medications, anxiety or sleep medicines, antidepressants, or any other medications that make you feel drowsy, sleepy, or relaxed. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. Benadryl has not been adequately evaluated in pregnant women. Benadryl 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.

Our Benadryl Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Benadryl Consumer Information

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using diphenhydramine and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • pounding heartbeats or fluttering in your chest;
  • painful or difficult urination;
  • little or no urinating;
  • confusion, feeling like you might pass out; or
  • tightness in your neck or jaw, uncontrollable movements of your tongue.

Common side effects may include:

  • dizziness, drowsiness, loss of coordination;
  • dry mouth, nose, or throat;
  • constipation, upset stomach;
  • dry eyes, blurred vision; or
  • day-time drowsiness or "hangover" feeling after night-time use.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Benadryl (Diphenhydramine)

Benadryl Professional Information

SIDE EFFECTS

When using this product:

  • marked drowsiness may occur
  • avoid alcoholic drinks
  • alcohol, sedatives, and tranquilizers may increase drowsiness
  • excitability may occur, especially in children
  • be careful when driving a motor vehicle or operating machinery

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Benadryl (Diphenhydramine)

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