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A drug may be classified by the chemical type of the active ingredient or by the way it is used to treat a particular condition. Each drug can be classified into one or more drug classes.

Decongestants are sympathomimetic drugs that act by stimulating the alpha-adrenergic receptors. Decongestants are either taken orally or applied locally in the form of nasal sprays or drops. The decongestant effect is due to vasoconstriction of the blood vessels in the nose, sinuses, etc. The vasoconstriction effect reduces swelling or inflammation and mucus formation in the nasal passage and makes it easier to breath.

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