Claritin is an anti allergic drug that is prescribed for the treatment of allergy symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, stuffiness, itching, and tearing eyes caused by conditions like hay fever or other upper respiratory allergies. It is also prescribed for treating swollen, red, itchy patches of skin caused by hives.
However, your doctor may also prescribe Claritin for other conditions if found appropriate.
How to use Claritin
The ideal way to use Claritin is to follow the instructions of your doctor. An alternative way is to check the medicine label for dosage instructions.
The dosage for Claritin depends on the age of the patient and the severity of the condition.
Adults and children above 6 years of age: One 10mg tablet or reditab and 2 teaspoon full (10mg) syrup once daily.
Children 2 to 5 years of age: Claritin syrup 5mg once daily.
In adults and children 6 years of age and over with liver failure or renal insufficiency (GFR < 30 mL/min), the starting dose should be 10 mg (one tablet or two teaspoonfuls) every other day. In children 2 to 5 years of age with liver failure or renal insufficiency, the starting dose should be 5 mg (one teaspoonful) every other day.
Drug Class and Mechanism
Claritin is an antihistamine that blocks the working of histamine, which is a naturally occurring allergy causing chemical in the body.
It is important that you maintain a strict schedule for taking Claritin to ensure that you do not miss any doses. But if you do, then you may take it as soon as you remember provided that you space out the next dosage accordingly.
On the other hand, if it is almost time for the next dose, then omit this dose and continue with your normal dosage schedule.
Never consume two doses to compensate for a missed dosage.
Store Claritin between 59 to 77 degrees F (15 and 25 Degrees), at room temperature. Ensure that you protect it from direct exposure to heat/moisture/light and from the reach of children and pets.
Use it within 6 months of removing from the pack. Each tab should be used after removing from its individual blister pack.
Avoid storing Claritin in the bathroom.
Consult your doctor before using Claritin if you have conditions like kidney disease, liver disease, if you have any kind of allergies to food items, medicines or other substances, if you are using some kind of herbal preparation, dietary supplement, prescription or non prescription drug.
Do not use Claritin if you are allergic to any of the ingredients in it (read medicine label if unsure).
You must avoid taking alcoholic beverages while using Claritin as it can increase the chances of becoming drowsy, faint or dizzy. Potentially hazardous tasks like driving, handling heavy machinery should also be avoided.
If you are pregnant or have plans for a pregnancy, then consult your doctor before using Claritin as Claritin may harm your fetus.
If you are breast feeding then please maintain caution as it is unknown whether Claritin is passed into the breast milk. So please consult your doctor prior to using it.
Please maintain caution while using Claritin in elderly patients as the safety as well as effectiveness of Claritin in these patients is yet to be ascertained.