Benadryl Patient Tips
How it works
Benadryl is a brand (trade) name for diphenhydramine. Diphenhydramine is an antihistamine that works on histamine receptors to block the allergic response.
- Used to treat allergic-type reactions including allergic conjunctivitis, urticaria (hives), and in addition to epinephrine for an anaphylactic reaction.
- Also effective at relieving motion sickness.
- Good for controlling symptoms such as sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and runny nose.
- May also be used for elderly people with Parkinson's disease unable to tolerate more potent agents.
- Can be used as a night-time sleep aid.
If you are between the ages of 18 and 60, take no other medication or have no other medical conditions, side effects you are more likely to experience include:
- Dizziness, low blood pressure, a dry mouth, headache, abdominal discomfort, rapid heart beat, disturbed coordination, and a thickening of bronchial secretions.
- Benadryl may cause drowsiness and sedation and affect your ability to drive or operate machinery. Avoid alcohol.
Notes: In general, seniors or children, people with certain medical conditions (such as liver or kidney problems, heart disease, diabetes, seizures) or people who take other medications are more at risk of developing a wider range of side effects. For a complete list of all side effects, click here.
- Do not drive or operate machinery if Benadryl makes you drowsy or affects your judgment. Avoid alcohol.
- When using for motion sickness, take Benadryl 30 minutes before exposure to motion. Take subsequent doses before meals or bedtime for the duration of the exposure.
- Not recommended as a night-time sleep aid for children aged less than twelve.
Response and Effectiveness
Benadry is quickly absorbed with maximum activity occurring within one hour. Effects of Benadryl last from four to six hours.
Benadryl [Package Insert] Revised 05/2006. Parke-Davis. https://www.drugs.com/pro/benadryl-injection.html
More about Benadryl (diphenhydramine)
- Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Drug Images
- Drug Interactions
- Support Group
- En Español
- 40 Reviews – Add your own review/rating
- Drug class: anticholinergic antiemetics
Related treatment guides
- Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Benadryl only for the indication prescribed.
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