Sudafed vs Dayquil - Comparison of Side Effects & Uses pills

Sudafed

It is the brand name of a medication called pseudoephedrine, a decongestant which shrinks blood vessels in the nasal passages to decrease swelling and congestion.

This reduces stuffy sensation which accompanies blocked sinuses as well as allergies to an easier breathing through the nose. Additionally, the medication helps to drain fluid from the inner ears that may contribute to this congestion.

This decongestant is produced by McNeil Laboratories, a division of Johnson & Johnson – one of the largest healthcare companies in the world.

Uses

Image credit – https://www.flickr.com/photos/wegotkidz/14274377648

This medication is used either as topical or as an oral decongestant. Also, it is sometimes used to prevent ear blockage in patients with ear pain caused by underwater diving or air travel.

Interestingly, the medication can be used illegally to produce methamphetamine, a highly addictive and illegal psychostimulant drug which is typically used for its strong euphoric effects that are similar to those of cocaine.

Side Effects And Precautions

Common side effects may include:

  • fear;
  • convulsions (seizures);
  • redness under the skin;
  • excitability or restlessness;
  • skin rash;
  • tremors;
  • hallucinations;
  • nervousness;
  • loss of appetite;
  • headaches;
  • itching;
  • nausea;
  • vomiting;
  • dizziness;
  • sleep problems (insomnia);
  • anxiety.

Less common side effects may include:

  • heart palpitations;
  • blurred or double vision;
  • sudden confusion;
  • tightness in the chest;
  • changes in vision;
  • a rapid heart rate.

To be sure that this decongestant is safe for you, tell your healthcare professional if you have or have ever had:

  • overactive thyroid;
  • coronary artery disease;
  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
  • high blood pressure;
  • difficulty urinating;
  • heart disease;
  • pheochromocytoma (an adrenal gland tumor);
  • glaucoma;
  • kidney impairment;
  • type 2 diabetes;
  • a cough with mucus;
  • alcoholism;
  • emphysema;
  • chronic bronchitis;
  • liver disease.

Alcoholalcohol

There are no warnings against drinking alcohol while taking this medication.

Drug Interactionsdiuretics water pill

It may negatively interact with other medications, especially:

  • isocarboxazid;
  • tranylcypromine;
  • reserpine;
  • flovent;
  • rasagiline;
  • mecamylamine;
  • selegiline;
  • linezolid;
  • methylene blue injection (used to treat abnormal blood pigment levels);
  • St. John’s Wort;
  • phenelzine;
  • bretylium;
  • Aleve;
  • drugs for insomnia;
  • atropine;
  • procarbazine;
  • drugs for enlarged prostate;
  • digoxin;
  • drugs for high blood pressure;
  • metoprolol (used for heart health);
  • other meds for cough, cold, or allergy;
  • caffeine.

Abuse

Due to its potent stimulant effects, this medication is sometimes abused or used for non-medical purposes. But, it has a low risk for dependence and withdrawal symptoms are unlikely to occur after stopping the intake.

Pregnancy & Breastfeeding

This medication passes into the breast-milk and may negatively affect the infant. Tell your doctor that you are breastfeeding a baby before taking this medication.

It is not known precisely whether this medication will negatively affect the fetus. Tell your healthcare professional that you are pregnant or plan to fall pregnant before taking this medication.

Dayquil Cold And Flu

It is a combination of acetaminophen, phenylephrine, and dextromethorphan.

Phenylephrine is a nasal decongestant that reduces the swelling of the blood vessels in your nasal passages. Dextromethorphan suppresses your urge to cough.

Acetaminophen is a fever reducer and a pain reliever that works by changing the way the body senses pain. Plus, acetaminophen changes how the body regulates its temperature.

Uses

This combination medicine is typically used to temporarily relieve symptoms caused by allergies, the common cold, flu, sinusitis, and bronchitis.

Dosage

The usual recommended dose is 2 tablespoons (30 ml) every 4 hours. The maximum recommended dose is 6 tablespoons per 24 hours.

Side Effects and Precautions

Common side effects may include:

  • stomach pain;
  • lightheadedness;
  • dizziness;
  • drowsiness;
  • trouble sleeping;
  • nausea;
  • nervousness;
  • vomiting.

Less common side effects may include:

  • itchiness;
  • rash;
  • trouble swallowing;
  • hives;
  • swelling of your hands, ankles, legs, feet, face, tongue, throat, or lips;
  • difficulty breathing;
  • red blistering skin.

Alcohol

Consuming alcoholic beverages while taking this medication should be avoided since alcohol can substantially increase the risk of side effects.

Drug Interactions

It may negatively interact with other medications, especially:

  • magnesium oxide;
  • Benadryl (diphenhydramine);
  • Tylenol (acetaminophen);
  • gabapentin;
  • trazodone;
  • flonase;
  • ibuprofen;
  • Zyrtec (cetirizine);
  • prednisone;
  • tramadol.

Pregnancy & Breastfeeding

This medication passes into breast milk and may negatively affect the infant. Tell your doctor that you are breastfeeding a baby before taking this medication.

It is not known precisely whether this medication will negatively affect the fetus. Tell your healthcare professional that you are pregnant or plan to fall pregnant before taking this medication.

Bottom Line – Sudafed vs Dayquil

Sudafed (active ingredient – pseudoephedrine) is a medication that shrinks blood vessels in the nasal passages. This decongestant is used to treat sinus and nasal congestion.

DayQuil Cold & Flu (active ingredients – acetaminophen, phenylephrine, and dextromethorphan) is a combination medication that temporarily treats symptoms of the common cold and flu. These symptoms include:

  • a sore throat;
  • fever;
  • headaches;
  • a cough;
  • minor aches and pains;
  • nasal congestion.

Both these medications have plenty of side effects, plus, they may even be ineffective.

For instance, a study conducted in 2012, that reviewed data from 26 randomized controlled trials, concluded that over-the-counter cough formulations, including DayQuil, provided no better or worse relief over receiving no treatment at all.

References

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1429971/
https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/765664
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/11/04/the-truth-about-cold-

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