Compare Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and Cough vs. DayQuil Cold and Flu

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough
(Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine)

Dayquil Cold And Flu
(Acetaminophen / Phenylephrine / Dextromethorphan)

Relieves coughing and cold symptoms. Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine) is good for multiple cold symptoms, but it's more medicine than you need if you only have one symptom.Relieves cold and flu symptoms. Dayquil Cold And Flu (Acetaminophen / Phenylephrine / Dextromethorphan) is a useful combination medicine that relieves cold and flu symptoms, but make sure you really need all of its ingredients.
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Reviews & ratings
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Reviews for Dayquil Cold And Flu (Acetaminophen / Phenylephrine / Dextromethorphan)
81%
19% vs. Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine)
37%
63% vs. Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine)
5%
5% vs. Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine)
Side effects
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu

We haven’t found good data for Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and Cough side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and Cough »

We haven’t found good data for DayQuil Cold and Flu side effects.

FDA side effect reports for DayQuil Cold and Flu »
How it works
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine) is a combination medicine that treats cold and flu symptoms. Aspirin relieves pain and reduces fever. Chlorpheniramine is an antihistamine that treats runny nose and watery eyes. Dextromethorphan is a cough suppressant. Phenylephrine is a decongestant that clears your sinuses.Dayquil Cold And Flu (Acetaminophen / Phenylephrine / Dextromethorphan) is a combination medicine that treats cold and flu symptoms. Acetaminophen relieves pain and reduces fever. Dextromethorphan is a cough suppressant. Phenylephrine is a decongestant that clears your sinuses.
Type of medication
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
Pain reliever
Salicylate
Antihistamine
1st generation
Cough suppressantDecongestantOver-the-counter
Pain reliever
APAP
DecongestantCough suppressantOver-the-counter
Available as
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
  • Pill
  • Effervescent tablet
  • Pill
  • Liquid
Used for (click to learn more)
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
Risk factors for serious side effects
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
  • History of stomach bleeding or ulcers
  • Age 60 years or older
  • Taking aspirin, NSAIDs, or blood thinners
  • Drinking more than 3 alcoholic beverages a day
  • Taking with alcohol
  • Taking with other medicines that make you less alert
  • Women of childbearing age
  • Age 18 years or younger
  • History of high blood pressure
  • Taking MAO inhibitors
  • Using other medications that affect serotonin
Detailed Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine) risks & warnings »
  • Drinking more than 2 alcoholic beverages a day
  • Taking with other Tylenol-containing medicines
  • History of liver disease
  • History of high blood pressure
  • Taking MAO inhibitors
  • Using other medications that affect serotonin
  • Women of childbearing age
  • History of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • History of smoking
Detailed Dayquil Cold And Flu (Acetaminophen / Phenylephrine / Dextromethorphan) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy category
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
NFDA pregnancy category (Unknown)

The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

See the FDA package insert
NFDA pregnancy category (Unknown)

The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

See the FDA package insert
Alcohol
No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
Food
No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
Kidneys and liver
No specific kidneys and liver-related info.No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
Sex
No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
Sleep
No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
Weight
No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
Upsides and benefits
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
  • Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine) is a combination medicine that relieves multiple cold symptoms. It's good to use if you have a stuffy nose, a cough, fever, and pain.
  • Phenylephrine (the decongestant ingredient) has fewer side effects than other decongestants like pseudoephedrine. It doesn't raise your blood pressure and heart rate as much, or cause as much trouble falling asleep.
  • Dextromethorphan (the cough suppressant ingredient) works well and has very few side effects.
  • Dayquil Cold And Flu (Acetaminophen / Phenylephrine / Dextromethorphan) is a combination medicine that relieves multiple cold symptoms. It's good to use if you have a stuffy nose, a cough, fever, and pain.
  • The decongestant (phenylephrine) has fewer side effects than other decongestants like pseudoephedrine. It doesn't raise your blood pressure and heart rate as much, or cause as much trouble falling asleep.
  • The pain reliever (acetaminophen) is easier on your stomach and has fewer drug interactions than other pain medications like aspirin or ibuprofen.
Downsides and risks
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
  • Phenylephrine doesn't last as long as other decongestants like pseudoephedrine.
  • The aspirin in Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine) interacts with many other drugs and health conditions.
  • If you don't really need all of the medications in this combination, you're taking extra medicine and might have extra side effects for no reason.
  • You shouldn't use it if you have high blood pressure.
  • Phenylephrine doesn't last as long as other oral decongestants like pseudoephedrine.
  • To avoid hurting your liver, you have to keep track of the total amount of acetaminophen (APAP) you're taking since it's a very common ingredient in pain and cold/flu combination medicines.
  • If you don't really need all of the medications in this combination, you're taking extra medicine and might have extra side effects for no reason.
  • You shouldn't use it if you have high blood pressure.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughDayQuil Cold and Flu
  • Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine) starts working in about 30 minutes.
  • Chlorpheniramine (the antihistamine in Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine)) can make you sleepy, so avoid activities that require you to be fully alert until you know how it affects you.
  • Phenylephrine (the decongestant ingredient) can make you restless, so don't take it too close to bedtime.
  • Don't take Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold And Cough (Aspirin / Chlorpheniramine / Dextromethorphan / Phenylephrine) if you're pregnant.
  • Let your doctor know if your symptoms don't improve in a few days, or if you have a really bad sore throat with a fever, headache, nausea, or vomiting.
  • Phenylephrine, the decongestant, can make you restless, so don't take it too close to bedtime.
  • If you get the liquid form, use the dosing cup to measure the exact amount of medicine you need.
  • Follow age-specific dosing instructions on how much to take.
  • Contains acetaminophen, also known as Tylenol or APAP. Taking too much can cause liver failure and death. Don't take more than what's recommended on the package or with other Tylenol-containing products.
  • Let your doctor know if your symptoms don't improve in a few days, or if you have a really bad sore throat with a fever, headache, nausea, or vomiting.
Learn more
More about Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and CoughSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
More about DayQuil Cold and FluSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert