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Claritin

What is Claritin

Claritin is an antihistamine. Antihistamines prevent sneezing, runny nose, itching and watering of the eyes, and other allergic symptoms.

Claritin is used to treat allergies, hives (urticaria), and other allergic inflammatory conditions.

Claritin may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

General medical information about Claritin

Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Although unlikely, Claritin may cause dizziness or drowsiness. If you experience dizziness or drowsiness, avoid these activities.

Who should not take Claritin

Before taking Claritin, tell your doctor if you have:
- ever had an allergic reaction to an antihistamine;
- kidney disease; or
- liver disease.

You may not be able to take Claritin, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment if you have any of the conditions listed above.

Claritin is in the FDA pregnancy category B. This means that it is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Do not take Claritin without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.

Claritin passes into breast milk and may affect a nursing infant. Do not take Claritin without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should take Claritin

Take Claritin exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these instructions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Take each dose with a full glass (8 ounces) of water.

Do not crush, chew, or break the regular Claritin tablets. Swallow them whole.

Place the Claritin rapidly-disintegrating-tablets (Claritin Reditabs) on your tongue and allow them to dissolve. The tablet will disintegrate rapidly. Swallow with or without water.

To ensure the correct dose, measure the syrup form of Claritin with a dose-measuring spoon or cup, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Claritin is usually taken once a day. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Never take more of this medication than directed. If your symptoms do not improve, talk to your doctor.

Store Claritin at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Use the Claritin rapidly-disintegrating-tablets (Claritin Reditabs) within 6 months of opening the laminated foil pouch, and immediately upon opening the individual tablet blisters.

If you miss a dose:

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take only your next regularly scheduled dose. Do not take a double dose of this medication.

What happens if you overdose:

Seek emergency medical attention.

Symptoms of a Claritin overdose include headache, drowsiness, irregular heartbeat, nausea, and vomiting.

Avoid while taking Claritin

Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Although unlikely, Claritin may cause dizziness or drowsiness. If you experience dizziness or drowsiness, avoid these activities.

Possible side effects of Claritin

If you experience any of the following serious side effects, stop taking Claritin and call your doctor immediately or seek emergency medical attention.
- an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives);
- an irregular heartbeat; or
- seizures.

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take Claritin and talk to your doctor if you experience
- drowsiness or dizziness;
- headache;
- nervousness;
- nausea, diarrhea, or abdominal discomfort;
- dry mouth;
- dry skin or itchiness; or
- discoloration of urine.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect Claritin

There are no known interactions between Claritin and other medications. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines during treatment with Claritin.

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