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How are antihistamines and decongestants used to treat postnasal drip?

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Antihistamines and decongestants can often help with postnasal drip caused by sinusitis and viral infections. They can also be effective, along with steroid nasal sprays, for postnasal drip caused by allergies.

The older, over-the-counter antihistamines, including diphenhydramine (Benadryl) and chlorpheniramine (Chlor-Trimeton), might not be the best choices for postnasal drip. When they dry out mucus, they can actually thicken it.

Newer antihistamines like loratadine (Claritin, Alavert), fexofenadine (Allegra), cetirizine (Zyrtec), levocetirizine (Xyzal), and desloratadine (Clarinex), may be better options and are less likely to cause drowsiness. It's a good idea to check with your doctor before taking these because all of them can have side effects that range from dizziness to dry mouth.

From: What Is Postnasal Drip? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Academy of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgery: "Post-Nasal Drip."

Chao, T.  , 2008. The Journal of Laryngology & Otology

St. John Providence Health System: "Postnasal Drip."

Mason R. , 4th ed., 2005. Murray & Nadel's Textbook of Respiratory Medicine

Chung, K.  , April 2008. The Lancet

Pratter, M.  , January 2006. Chest

 

 

Reviewed by Louise Chang on August 06, 2018

SOURCES:

American Academy of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgery: "Post-Nasal Drip."

Chao, T.  , 2008. The Journal of Laryngology & Otology

St. John Providence Health System: "Postnasal Drip."

Mason R. , 4th ed., 2005. Murray & Nadel's Textbook of Respiratory Medicine

Chung, K.  , April 2008. The Lancet

Pratter, M.  , January 2006. Chest

 

 

Reviewed by Louise Chang on August 06, 2018

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How can you thin your mucus to treat postnasal drip?

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