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dumbteenth's avatar

I've had a good amount to drink tonight. Is it safe to take an allergy pill?

Asked by dumbteenth (205 points ) September 5th, 2010

I’ve had a few drinks tonight and stupidly went into my basement where there’s dust and other allergens. So now I’m sneezing and wheezing – which is a typical reaction that’s usually cleared up with some Zyrtec or Allerclear or something similar (I have the generic).

But is it safe to take with alcohol in my system? I’m trying to keep my liver in good shape – it’s bad enough as it is. I know you’re not my doctor, but any input? I’d prefer to be able to breathe again and to stop sneezing so I can, you know, sleep.

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12 Answers

Frenchfry's avatar

I would say no. Read the instructions . There should be a warning label.

ETpro's avatar

I don’t know of any allergy medications that specifically react with alcohol, but check the label and Google the alergy med. for drug interactions and contraindications.

dumbteenth's avatar

Well, yeah, there’s a warning label but it talks about increasing the side effects like drowsiness, etc. I have no problem with that. But I don’t want it to physically damage my liver/kidney/body and that’s what I’m afraid of.

That said, if I can’t take this pill I could really use some other ideas because these allergy symptoms REALLY suck.

zzc's avatar

Does the allergy medicine package have a caution saying not to take it with alcohol? Most meds like this are antihistimines, which are sedating, and thus not safe to combine with alcohol. Pharmacists are excellent references. Call a pharmacist, depending on where you are, you might have to call a 24 hr. pharmacy, if you are still unsure.

ETpro's avatar

Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is one thing that does have serious potential for liver damage when taken with too much alcohol. If all it warns of is drowsiness and it’s time for bed anyway, don’t worry about it.

dumbteenth's avatar

Okay, it’s Allerclear and it says “Ask a doctor before use if you have kidney or liver problems” which I don’t (not that I know of), but whenever I see “liver” on a med label I assume it’s talking about booze…yeah that might be a stupid assumption. Though this does have a lot of antihistamine in it, and I don’t know how that mixes with alcohol.

I’m taking this pill in a few minutes unless SOMEONE CAN TALK ME OUT OF IT!! ILL DO IT I SWEAR!

zzc's avatar

If the caution says not to combine it, because of increased drowsiness, you need to realize that it can also mean your breathing. As in shallow breathing, where the oxygen intake is inadequate. I work in a post anesthesia care unit. We monitor breathing and oxygen intake after even light sedation and have to supplement with oxygen and/or stimulate the person, and coach them to deep breath, so that their brain and other organs receive adequate oxygen.

dumbteenth's avatar

Okay well, can’t argue with that.

Looks like I’m gonna just have to tough this one out.

zzc's avatar

Sorry, you’re probably trying to sleep now. . . I meant to suggest earlier. . . have you ever done saline rinses in your nose? There are these little things that sort of look like little teapots to use to pour saline in your nose so that it flows out the other nostril. I cringe at the thought. But people swear by it. Your pharmacist will know about it and can show you the product. If I could do it, it’s preferable. All I can handle is saline nasal spray. It has really helped. It looks like a regular nasal spray, but it’s only saline. Either way, the saline helps flush out your nose and nasal passages and the allergens that are causing the reaction. I keep a bottle in my medicine cabinet to nip an allergic reaction, like you describe, in the bud. I’m impressed that you have the where with all, to think of the possible problem taking your allergy med with alcohol in your system and to put the question out there. Very astute. Very responsible. Good for you! Hope tomorrow is a better day.

jazmina88's avatar

i think zyrtec would be okay.

dabbler's avatar

@zzc +1 for nasal irrigation with saline solution, more effective than you might expect.
Also, consider taking only a portion of the allergy pill, just enough to get some relief.

HungryGuy's avatar

No. As bad ideas go, mixing alcohol with prescription meds is close to the top of the list.

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