Generic Name: diphenhydramine (DYE-fen-HYE-dra-meen)
Brand Name: Examples include Benadryl and Dermarest
Diphenhydramine cream is used for:
Temporarily relieving pain and itching associated with insect bites, minor burns, sunburn, minor skin irritations, minor cuts, scrapes, and rashes caused by poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac.
Diphenhydramine cream is an antihistamine. It works by blocking the action of histamine, which reduces the symptoms of an allergic reaction.
Do NOT use diphenhydramine cream if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in diphenhydramine cream
- you use any other medicine that contains diphenhydramine, unless your doctor tells you to
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using diphenhydramine cream:
Some medical conditions may interact with diphenhydramine cream. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you have porphyria
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with diphenhydramine cream. Because little, if any, of diphenhydramine cream is absorbed into the blood, the risk of it interacting with another medicine is low.
Ask your health care provider if diphenhydramine cream may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use diphenhydramine cream:
Use diphenhydramine cream as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Diphenhydramine cream is for external use only. Avoid contact with the eyes. Do not swallow diphenhydramine cream.
- Wash and completely dry the affected area. Gently rub the medicine in until it is evenly distributed. Apply to the affected area not more than 3 to 4 times a day.
- Wash your hands immediately after using diphenhydramine cream.
- If you miss a dose of diphenhydramine cream and you are using it regularly, use it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use diphenhydramine cream.
Important safety information:
- Diphenhydramine cream may cause harm if it is swallowed. If you have taken it by mouth, contact your poison control center or emergency room right away.
- If your symptoms do not get better within 7 days, if they get worse, or if they come back, stop using diphenhydramine cream and check with your doctor.
- Do not use on chickenpox, measles, or on large areas of the body, including large areas of poison ivy, sunburn, or broken, blistered, or oozing skin, unless advised to do so by your doctor.
- Diphenhydramine cream has diphenhydramine in it. Before you start any new medicine, including one used on the skin, check the label to see if it has diphenhydramine in it too. If it does or if you are not sure, check with your doctor or pharmacist.
- Diphenhydramine cream should not be used in CHILDREN younger than 2 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using diphenhydramine cream while you are pregnant. Diphenhydramine cream is found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use diphenhydramine cream, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.
Possible side effects of diphenhydramine cream:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue).
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Diphenhydramine cream may be harmful if swallowed. Symptoms after swallowing diphenhydramine cream may include confusion, hallucinations, or loss of consciousness.Proper storage of diphenhydramine cream:
Store diphenhydramine cream at room temperature, between 59 and 77 degrees F (15 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Keep diphenhydramine cream out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about diphenhydramine cream, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Diphenhydramine cream is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take diphenhydramine cream or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about diphenhydramine cream. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to diphenhydramine cream. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using diphenhydramine cream.
Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.