When nature begins to blossom, most people enjoy the colors that nature provides such as green leaves, floral blooms and the start of garden crops. For others, allergy season has begun. Pollen from dormant plants begin to fill the air. You can’t really see it when it is in high bloom, but when you wake up in the morning and there is a green powder on your car, that’s pollen. Turns out that doesn’t just come from trees and flowers but also grass and weed. Some of the more notorious pollinators include ragweed, ryegrass, maple, elm, mulberry, oak and tumbleweed. Mother nature has provided pharmaceutical companies an opportunity to provide medications for the treatment of allergic reactions.
How Allergies Work
An allergy is a simple reaction by your immune system to something detected in your body that is harmless. Allergens such as pollen, dust and mold are recognized by your body as foreign invaders. The most common path of detection is through your nose during breathing. Once they are detected, a response is initiated by the immune system. The immediate response after detection is the release of histamine which causes a reaction in your body. This reaction can be typically seen as sneezing, runny nose, itchy, watery eyes and itchy throat or nose. So for allergy relief, the treatment is to block the production of histamine so your immune system does not respond. (#zyrtecsideeffect)
There are two main allergy medications available over the counter which are under the trade names of Claritin (loratadine) and Zyrtec (cetirizine). All three are very similar in how they work to reduce allergies. If we begin with Claritin, this is called a second generation histamine H1-receptor blocker. To make it simple, it stops the production of histamine by not allowing allergens to trigger the receptors that signal the body to create histamine. The active ingredient in Claritin (loratadine) closely resembles tricyclic antidepressants and can react as such when taken. Zyrtec (cetirizine) is also a second generation histamine H1-receptor blocker and reacts similarly to Claritin. In addition, Zyrtec helps treat itching and swelling caused by hives
The importance of second generation anti-histamines is that once ingested, they will not pass the blood brain barrier, affect the central nervous system and induce drowsiness or interfere with memory formation. This is how they can advertise that it is non drowsy allergy relief. The next step is to combine it with a decongestant to help treat colds so you get a one two punch. Claritin D is loratadine with pseudoephedrine which is the decongestant part while Zyrtec D also contains pseudoephedrine.
Zyrtec Side Effects vs Claritin Side Effects
As we all know, the side effects of Zyrtec are just as important as the treatment. As you visit the cold and allergy isle at your local CVS or Walgreens, keep in mind some of the side effects. They include fatigue, dizziness, dry mouth like the Sahara, sore throat, cough, nausea, constipation, ringing in the ears and headaches. When comparing the Zyrtec side effects with histamine, the natural symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose, itchiness and watery eyes aren’t terrible. It all depends on the severity of the symptoms and it might be worth letting your immune system take its course.
The Zyrtec D side effects are a bit more serious which include difficulty breathing, swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat, fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat. Also add uncontrolled shaking, insomnia, reduced urination, increased blood pressure which can cause severe headache. Followed by blurred vision, trouble concentrating, chest pain, numbness, and even seizures.
When comparing Zyrtec side effects with Claritin, you will see some common side effects but also some new ones. They include headaches, sleepiness, drowsiness, fatigue, nervousness, stomach pain, diarrhea, dry mouth, sore throat, hoarseness, eye redness, blurred vision, nosebleed, or rash. The Claritin D side effects are very similar to the Zyrtec side effects. The additional side effects include dizziness, palpitations, nausea, stomach pain, constipation, loss of appetite, upset stomach, warmth-redness or tingle feeling under your skin, restlessness or excitability, problems with memory or concentration and ringing in your ears.
This is all information that you need to keep in mind before you automatically seeking that quick relief. Will Zyrtec side effects deter you from using it?