Prescription or OTCLower-cost generic available



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  • Chewable tablet
  • Orally disintegrating tablet
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Treats allergy symptoms.

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Prescription or OTCLower-cost generic available

Our pharmacists’ bottom line

Claritin (Loratadine) is a once-daily allergy relief medication that doesn't make you feel sleepy.

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  • 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.
  • 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).

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Side effects for Claritin (Loratadine)

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These are side effects of Claritin (Loratadine) reported to the FDA by people taking it, and by doctors and pharmacists.

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What to expect when you start Claritin (Loratadine)

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Tips from our pharmacists
  • 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.

Risks and Warnings for Claritin (Loratadine)

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  • There are many different over the counter medications with the brand name Claritin (Loratadine). Each one may contain different active ingredients. Be sure to read the labels carefully to understand what kind of medicine you have and what the correct dose should be.

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Tips from pharmacists and people taking Claritin (Loratadine)

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The FDA category for this medication is N. It is advised that you: Unknown