Have you noticed your kid scratching here and there? Or has your kid been sneezing for several days now without any reason at all? Your kid might be suffering from an allergic reaction. Allergies may occur to any person—these might be due to triggers, seasons, etc. The sad thing about allergies is that it may turn into a life threatening condition when the airways start to become inflamed.
Antihistamines are the drugs of choice for allergic reactions. Among the newest breeds of antihistamines, cetirizine (Zyrtec) and levocetirizine (Xyzal) are steadily gaining momentum in the market.
What We Need To Know About Zyrtec and Xyzal?
Zyrtec (Cetirizine) and Xyzal (Levocetirizine) are antihistamines that block allergic reactions which cause itchiness, hives and urticaria, sneezing and watery eyes. Zyrtec and Xyzal basically came from the same chemical composition. The difference is that Zyrtec and Xyzal are mirror images of each chemical composition. There are studies however that point out the ability of Xyzal to bind more effectively to histamine receptors than Zyrtec.
While the use of Zyrtec is not specified with regard to age, Xyzal has been specifically formulated to be used by children AT LEAST 6 months of age. Children below six months might not be able to handle the effects of this drug.
How Zyrtec and Xyzal Need To Be Taken?
Both Zyrtec and Xyzal can be taken with or without food. Zyrtec has a chewable form of tablet, thus it needs to be chewed first before it can be swallowed.
When taking the oral suspension form of the drug, you have to use a liquid measuring device in order to get the exact dosage of these drugs.
Side Effects That We Need To Watch Out For
Both Xyzal and Zyrtec have similar side effects with regard to the drowsiness that most anti-histamines bring about. Dry mouth, sore throat and temporary weakness may occur when taking this drug.
The difference between Xyzal and Zyrtec is that the former can give rise of liver-related side effects like jaundice (yellow discoloration of the skin and conjunctiva), dark or tea colored urine and episodes of nosebleed (especially to a child). One the other hand, Zyrtec can give rise to side effects like fast heartbeat, restlessness or inability to settle and focus, as well as mental confusion.
Special Precautions When Taking Xyzal and Zyrtec
Since anti-histamine drugs have the tendency to make us drowsy/ restless/ mentally confused, be mindful, if not avoid driving or operating heavy machineries while taking this drug. Also, be knowledgeable of the side effects such as allergic reaction to this drug like swelling of lips, face and throat, hives and difficulty of breathing.
Pregnancy wise, this medicine is not expected to harm a growing fetus when taken during pregnancy but for safety’s sake, make sure you confide with your physician all other drugs that you take in the course of pregnancy.
Allergies may appear lightly to a person but its effects, especially when unmanaged can be very life threatening. Identify if you or your relative is suffering from an allergic reaction and have him or her consult a medical professional to get the necessary interventions.