Loratadine is an antihistamine that reduces the effects of natural chemical histamine in the body. Histamine can produce symptoms of sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and runny nose.
Loratadine is used to treat the symptoms of allergies, such as sneezing, watery eyes, and runny nose. It is also used to treat skin hives and itching in people with chronic skin reactions.
Use loratadine exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Loratadine is usually taken once per day. Follow your doctor’s instructions.
Do not crush, chew, or break the regular loratadine tablet. Swallow the pill whole.
Measure liquid medicine with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.
To take loratadine orally disintegrating tablet (Claritin RediTab, Alavert):
- Keep the tablet in its blister pack until you are ready to take the medicine. Open the package and peel back the foil from the tablet blister. Do not push a tablet through the foil or you may damage the tablet.
- Using dry hands, remove the tablet and place it on your tongue. It will begin to dissolve right away.
- Do not swallow the tablet whole. Allow it to dissolve in your mouth without chewing.
- Swallow several times as the tablet dissolves. If desired, you may drink water to help swallow the dissolved tablet.
Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve.
Store loratadine at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to loratadine: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
- fast or uneven heart rate;
- feeling like you might pass out;
- jaundice (yellowing of your skin or eyes); or
- seizures (convulsions).
Less serious loratadine side effects may include:
- feeling tired or drowsy;
- stomach pain, diarrhea;
- dry mouth, sore throat hoarseness;
- eye redness, blurred vision;
- nosebleed; or
- skin rash.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.