Claritin vs. Sudafed

Are Claritin and Sudafed the Same Thing?

Claritin (loratadine) and Sudafed (pseudoephedrine HCI) are used to treat allergy and hay fever symptoms such as runny nose and nasal congestion.

Claritin is also used to treat allergy symptoms such as itching, sneezing, and allergic skin rashes.

Sudafed is also used for temporary relief of nasal congestion due to the common cold.

Claritin and Sudafed belong to different drug classes. Claritin is an antihistamine and Sudafed is a decongestant.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Claritin?

Common side effects of Claritin include:

Tell your doctor if you experience serious side effects of Claritin including fast or uneven heart rate, feeling like you might pass out, jaundice (yellowing of your skin or eyes), or seizures (convulsions).

What Are Possible Side Effects of Sudafed?

Common side effects of Sudafed include:

  • nervousness,
  • restlessness or excitability (especially in children),
  • dizziness,
  • headache,
  • fear,
  • anxiety,
  • loss of appetite,
  • sleep problems (insomnia),
  • skin rash,
  • itching,
  • tremors,
  • hallucinations,
  • convulsions (seizures),
  • nausea,
  • vomiting, and
  • flushing (warmth, tingling, or redness under your skin).

What is Claritin?

Claritin (loratadine) is an antihistamine used to treat allergy symptoms. Claritin blocks the action of histamine, a substance in the body that initiates allergic symptoms like itching, sneezing, runny nose, and allergic skin rashes. Claritin is available as a generic drug.

What is Sudafed?

Sudafed (pseudoephedrine HCI) is a decongestant prescribed for the temporary relief of nasal congestion due to the common cold, hay fever, and sinus congestion. Sudafed is available as a generic drug.

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What Drugs Interact With Claritin?

Claritin may interact with certain antibiotics, antifungal medications, and acid-reducing drugs.

What Drugs Interact With Sudafed?

Sudafed may interact with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) and antidepressants.

Sudafed may also interact with bronchodilators, blood pressure medications, and calcium channel blockers.

How Should Claritin Be Taken?

Claritin is available as a 10 mg tablet, a 5 or 10 mg rapidly-disintegrating tablet, a 10 mg chewable tablet, and a syrup (5 mg per 5 ml). Claritin is taken once a day. Drug interactions may occur with certain antibiotics, antifungal medications, and acid-reducing drugs. Warnings may apply to individuals who have asthma, kidney disease, or liver disease. People who have phenylketonuria (PKU) should avoid certain brands of orally disintegrating tablets that may contain aspartame. Claritin is generally avoided during pregnancy and nursing. Pregnant women may take Claritin only if it is clearly needed. Nursing mothers should consult their doctor before breastfeeding. Claritin should not be used in children younger than 6 years of age unless directed by a doctor. Chewable tablets should not be used in children younger than 2 years of age unless directed by a pediatric doctor.

How Should Sudafed Be Taken?

Sudafed usual dose is one tablet every 12 hours.

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References

Bayer. Claritin Product Information.
https://www.claritin.com
Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. Sudafed.
https://www.sudafed.com

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