Treats allergy symptoms and helps you sleep. Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) is great for allergies, but curl up on the couch after taking it and get ready for a nap. Treats allergy symptoms. Claritin (Loratadine) is a once-daily allergy relief medication that doesn't make you feel sleepy. Find lowest prices Save on your next prescription. Be sure you’re getting the lowest price for your medication, even if you have insurance. Reviews & ratings Everyone Men Women Button Group. All currently active Everyone Men Women All ages 18-34 35-54 55+ Button Group. All currently active All ages 18-34 35-54 55+ 5.5767790262172285 Benadryl
Reviews for Benadryl (Diphenhydramine)
of people say Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) is worth it
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Reviews for Claritin (Loratadine)
vs. Benadryl (Diphenhydramine)
19% vs. Benadryl (Diphenhydramine)
+2% vs. Benadryl (Diphenhydramine)
We haven’t found good data for Benadryl side effects.
FDA side effect reports for Benadryl »
We haven’t found good data for Claritin side effects.
FDA side effect reports for Claritin » How it works Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) is an antihistamine. It blocks histamine, a chemical that causes congestion, itching, and other allergic reactions. It also makes you sleepy. Claritin (Loratadine) is an antihistamine. It blocks histamine, a chemical that causes congestion, itching, and other allergic reactions. Antihistamines can also make you sleepy, but Loratadine is a low-drowsiness version. Type of medication Antihistamine
› 1st generation
Prescription or OTC Antihistamine
› 2nd generation
Prescription or OTC Available as Pill Oral solution Cream, gel, or ointment Pill Chewable tablet Orally disintegrating tablet Liquid Used for (click to learn more) Risk factors for serious side effects › Using other drugs with the same ingredients › Taking with alcohol › Taking other medicines that make you less alert › Children age 6 years and younger › Enlarged prostate › History of bladder problems Detailed Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) risks & warnings » › Taking with alcohol › Taking other medicines that make you less alert › History of phenylketonuria (PKU) Detailed Claritin (Loratadine) risks & warnings » Pregnancy category B FDA pregnancy category (Probably safe)
Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.
See the FDA package insert N FDA 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 › Don't take it with alcohol or other drugs that make you sleepy. 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 › Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) makes you tired, so take it before you go to sleep. No specific sleep-related info.
Weight No specific weight-related info. No specific weight-related info. Upsides and benefits › Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) is often better than other antihistamines at treating allergy symptoms and hives. › It can provide quick relief of allergy symptoms for both kids and adults. › It makes you sleepy, so it'll help if your allergies are bothering you at night. › The effects wear off in 4 to 6 hours, so side effects don't last that long. › It comes as a tablet, capsule, liquid, and quick dissolving tablet. › Relieves allergy symptoms like sneezing and runny nose just as well as other antihistamines, but with less sedation (drowsiness). › Also treats hives and itchy skin. › Side effects are rare and usually mild. › Available over the counter without a prescription. › Comes as a tablet, liquid, or quick-dissolving tablet. › Can provide quick relief of allergy symptoms for both kids and adults. › Okay to take with most other medications because it doesn't have many interactions. Downsides and risks › Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) makes you more tired than Claritin, Allegra, or Zyrtec. › You shouldn't drive after taking Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) until you know how it affects you. › Talk to a pediatrician before giving Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) to a child. › It can increase the risk of falls, so elderly people shouldn't use Benadryl (Diphenhydramine). › Don't use Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) if you are breastfeeding. › For some people, its effectiveness on treating allergies wears off over time. › Some people find that other more sedating antihistamines (like Zyrtec or Benadryl) are more effective for them. › If you have daily allergy symptoms, a prescription nasal steroid spray might be better for you long-term. › Not for kids under 2 years. › The Reditabs version contains aspartame (phenylalanine). Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication › Take it as needed every 4 to 6 hours. › Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) can make you dehydrated, so avoid this side effect by drinking plenty of fluids. › Benadryl (Diphenhydramine) makes you tired, so take it before you go to sleep. › Don't take it with alcohol or other drugs that make you sleepy. › If you need to use it for more than a few weeks, talk with your doctor. A different medication might work better for you long-term. › If you only have itchy or watery eyes, try using just an antihistamine eye drop. › Take it only once a day. › Starts working in a few hours. › Can make you feel sleepy, so take it at bedtime if needed. › Avoid possible side effects by drinking plenty of non-caffeinated liquids. › If you need to use it for more than a few weeks, talk with your doctor about trying a nasal steroid instead, which might work better for you long-term. › Using an antihistamine eye drop might work better to help itchy or watery eyes. Learn more More about Benadryl Side effects Reviews & ratings Alternatives FDA package insert More about Claritin Side effects Reviews & ratings Alternatives FDA package insert