What is Zyrtec?Zyrtec is an antihistamine used to treat the symptoms (such as sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes, itchy nose, tearing, red eyes) of allergies due to tree pollen, ragweed, or grass (seasonal allergic rhinitis) in adults and children ≥2 years of age.
Zyrtec is also used to treat the symptoms of allergies due to dust mites, animal dander, and molds (perennial allergic rhinitis) in adults and children ≥6 months of age.
Zyrtec also treats chronic itching and hives of the skin in adults and children ≥6 months of age.
What is the most important information I should know about Zyrtec?Zyrtec may make you drowsy or tired. Do not drive a car or engage in tasks that require mental alertness, such as operating heavy machinery, until you know how Zyrtec will affect you.
Do not drink alcohol or take other medications that may make you drowsy or tired while taking Zyrtec. These medications may further decrease your mental alertness and can lead to impaired concentration.
Use Zyrtec with caution if you have any type of liver or kidney problems.
Who should not take Zyrtec?Do not take Zyrtec if you are allergic to any of its ingredients or to hydroxyzine.
What should I tell my doctor before I take the first dose of Zyrtec?Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Zyrtec. Also, talk to your doctor about your complete medical history, especially if you have kidney or liver problems, are receiving hemodialysis, are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
What is the usual dosage?The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your doctor uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your doctor may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your doctor's approval.
Adults and children ≥6 years: The recommended starting dose is 5 or 10 milligrams (mg) once a day.
Children 2-5 years: Chewable tablet: The recommended starting dose is 2.5 mg once a day. Your doctor may increase your child's dose to 5 mg once a day. Syrup: The recommended starting dose is 1/2 a teaspoonful once a day. Your doctor may increase the dose to a maximum of 5 mg per day, given as 1 teaspoonful once a day, or 1/2 a teaspoonful every 12 hours.
Zyrtec syrup is not recommended in children <6 years old with kidney or liver problems.
Children 6-23 months: Syrup: The recommended starting dose is 1/2 a teaspoonful once a day. For children 12-23 months, your child's doctor may increase the dose to 5 mg per day, taken as 1/2 a teaspoonful every 12 hours.
Zyrtec syrup is recommended for children under the age of 2 years.
Elderly ≥77 years: The recommended starting dose of Zyrtec is 5 mg once a day.
How should I take Zyrtec?Zyrtec can be taken with or without food. Zyrtec chewable tablets may be taken with or without water.
What should I avoid while taking Zyrtec?Avoid alcohol while taking Zyrtec.
Avoid driving a car or operating heavy machinery until you know how Zyrtec will affect you.
Avoid becoming pregnant or breastfeeding while taking Zyrtec.
What are possible food and drug interactions associated with Zyrtec?If Zyrtec is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Zyrtec with the following: alcohol, other medications that may make you drowsy or tired, and theophylline.
What are the possible side effects of Zyrtec?Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this drug.
Side effects may include: sleepiness, headache, throat pain, fatigue, abdominal pain, dry mouth, coughing, diarrhea, nosebleeds, bronchospasm (airway narrowing)
Can I receive Zyrtec if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?The effects of Zyrtec during pregnancy and breastfeeding are unknown. Tell your doctor immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
What should I do if I miss a dose of Zyrtec?If you forget to take Zyrtec, take it as soon as you remember. If it is closer to your next scheduled dose, skip the dose you missed and take Zyrtec according to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at once.
How should I store Zyrtec?Store Zyrtec tablets and Zyrtec chewable tablets at room temperature. Zyrtec syrup may be stored at room temperature or refrigerated.
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