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Cetirizine is a drug  to relieve symptoms or complaints due to allergic reactions, such as  itching of the skin, throat, nose, sneezing, or hives. This drug can be found in the form of tablets, syrup, or  oral drops ( drops ) .

Cetirizine is an antihistamine drug. This drug works by blocking histamine, which is a compound that increases in number and causes allergic symptoms and reactions when the body is exposed to allergens (allergy-triggering substances).

Please note that cetirizine cannot cure allergies including skin allergies . The best way to prevent an allergic reaction is to avoid exposure to allergens.

Cetirizine trademarks: Allergia, Allerzen, Cerini, Cetinal, Cetirizine HCl, Cetirizine Hydrochloride, Etarizine, Palergi, Hufarizine  Incidal-OD , Ozen, Rinocet, Yarizine, Zentris

What is Cetirizine

class Prescription drugs
Category Antihistamines _
Benefit Relieves allergy symptoms, such as itching of the skin or hives
Consumed by Adults and children aged ≥2 years
Cetirizine for Pregnant and Breastfeeding Mothers Category B: Animal studies have not demonstrated a risk to the fetus, but there are no controlled studies in pregnant women. Cetirizine may be absorbed into breast milk. If you are breastfeeding, do not take this drug without consulting your doctor.
Medicine Form Film-coated tablets, syrups, or oral drops ( drops )

Precautions Before Consuming Cetirizine

Cetirizine is a drug that needs to be consumed according to a doctor's prescription. The following are some things you need to pay attention to before consuming cetirizine:

  • Do not take cetirizine if you are allergic to this drug. Tell your doctor if you are allergic to hydroxyzine or levocetirizine .
  • Tell your doctor if you have had or currently have benign prostate enlargement , kidney disease, liver disease , difficulty urinating, or epilepsy .
  • Tell your doctor if you are taking any other medicines, including supplements or herbal products.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning a pregnancy.
  • Do not do activities that require alertness, such as driving a vehicle, after taking cetirizine, because this drug can cause drowsiness .
  • Do not consume alcoholic beverages after taking cetirizine.
  • See your doctor immediately if you have an allergic drug reaction, serious side effect, or overdose after taking cetirizine.

Dosage and Instructions for Use of Cetirizine

The dose of cetirizine prescribed by a doctor can be different for each patient. The doctor will adjust the dosage and duration of drug use according to age, overall health condition, and the patient's body's reaction to the drug. In general, the following is the dose of cetirizine to relieve allergy symptoms:

  • Adults and children >12 years of age: 10 mg, once daily.
  • Children 6–12 years: 5 mg, 2 times a day.
  • Children 2–6 years: 2.5 mg, 2 times a day.

How to Take Cetirizine Correctly

Use cetirizine according to the doctor's prescription and read the instructions on the medicine package. Do not reduce or increase the dose taken without a doctor's instructions.

Cetirizine can be taken before or after meals. Cetirizine tablets need to be swallowed whole with a glass of water. Do not chew or crush the medicine.

Meanwhile, cetirizine in the form of syrup or  drops needs to be shaken before use. Use the spoon or measuring device provided to consume cetirizine syrup or  drops so that the dosage is appropriate.

If you forget to take cetirizine, consume it immediately if the time lag for the next dose is not too close. If the time interval is too close, ignore the dose and do not double the next dose.

Keep in mind, doctors usually recommend stopping cetirizine after your condition improves. However, don't stop taking cetirizine if your doctor doesn't recommend it.

Store cetirizine in a dry and cool place away from direct sunlight. Keep this medicine out of reach of children.

Interactions of Cetirizine with Other Drugs

Drug interactions that can occur if cetirizine is used with certain drugs include:

  • Increased risk of excessive drowsiness and side effects when cetirizine is used with antihistamines, anticonvulsants , muscle relaxants, antidepressants or antianxiety drugs
  • Cetirizine levels increase when used with theophylline

In addition, if cetirizine is taken with alcoholic beverages, it can increase the risk of drowsiness.

Cetirizine Side Effects and Dangers

There are several side effects that can occur after consuming cetirizine, namely:

  • Drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Unusual fatigue
  • Fast heart rate
  • Nausea, vomiting , or stomach pain
  • Dizziness or headache

Check with your doctor if the side effects mentioned above do not subside or get worse. Immediately go to the doctor if a drug allergic reaction appears , after consuming cetirizine.

Although rare, there are some more serious side effects that can occur after taking cetirizine, namely hallucinations, tremors , nosebleeds, difficulty breathing, low blood pressure , or swelling of the whole body ( angioedema ). Immediately see a doctor if you experience these complaints or symptoms.

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