allergy medication, over the counter

What is chlorpheniramine?

It is a first generation antihistamine, or allergy medication.  It is used to treat itchy, watery eyes, sneezing, itchy throat and nose associated with hay fever or other allergies.

It is also referred to chlorpheniramine maleate.

In the United States is is sold under the brand name Chlor-Trimeton® and in Canada under the brand name Chlor-Tripolon.


Adults and children down to age 12 – chlorpheniramine 4 mg every four to six hours.  Max six 4mg tablets per day.

Children 6 to 12 years old – 2 mg every four to six hours.  Max 12 mg per day.

Do Not use if you have narrow-angle glaucoma, enlarged prostate, bladder obstruction, bowel obstruction, if you are taking an MAOI or if you are breast feeding.

It is not recommended for use during pregnancy

Side Effects

Low blood pressure, heart palpitations and racing heart may occur.

Blurred vision, constipation, dry mouth, difficulty urinating, weight gain, wheezing, tightness in the chest and increased sensitivity may also occur.

Contact your Doctor or Pharmacist if you believe your are having side effects.

Chlorpheniramine and Phenylephrine

The decongestant phenylephrine is often combined with chlorpheniramine.  The combination works well when sinus pressure accompanies allergy symptoms

Some of the brand names of this combination include: Actifed® Cold and Allergy, and Sudafed® PE Sinus and Allergy


Although drowsiness is common with the first generation antihistamines, chlorpheniramine 4mg seems to be tolerated well.  I have seen many people get relief from their allergies and still remain alert.

Remember to reduce your exposure to pollen.  Avoid being outdoors during peak pollen times (5am to 10am), keep the windows closed and avoid going outside on dry, windy days.

Also, sinus rinse kits can remove irritating pollen from the sinus cavities.  Try the NeilMed Sinus Rinse Kit you may be amazed how well it works.

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The pharmaceutical information on this site is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information is not intended to be patient education and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment.
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