Medicines

Can You Take DayQuil at Night?

What is DayQuil?

According to Healthline, DayQuil Cold & Flu is a combination product that contains the active ingredients acetaminophen, dextromethorphan, and phenylephrine. It temporarily treats symptoms of the common cold and flu. These symptoms include:

•          fever

•          cough

•          nasal congestion

•          minor aches and pains

•          headache

•          sore throat

DayQuil is made for use during the day. Unlike NyQuil, it doesn’t contain the active ingredient doxylamine, which is an antihistamine that can make you feel drowsy.

How does it work?

Acetaminophen is a fever reducer and a pain reliever. It works by changing the way your body senses pain. It also changes how your body regulates its temperature. Dextromethorphan suppresses your urge to cough. The third ingredient, phenylephrine, is a nasal decongestant. It reduces the swelling of the blood vessels in your nasal passages.

What are the forms and dosages?

DayQuil comes in liquid-filled capsules called LiquiCaps. It also comes as a liquid that you drink. The following table lists the recommended dosage for each form by age group. Ask your doctor for the correct dosage for children ages 4 to 5 years, and don’t give DayQuil to children who are younger than 4 years.

Recommended dosageLiquiCapsLiquid
Adults and children 12 years and oldertwo capsules every 4 hours as needed, no more than four doses in 24 hours30 mL every 4 hours as needed, no more than 4 doses in 24 hours
Children ages 6-11 yearsAsk your doctor15 mL every 4 hours as needed, no more than four doses in 24 hours
Children ages 4-5 yearsAsk your doctorAsk your doctor
Children younger than 4 yearsDo not useDo not use

If your symptoms don’t improve or if they get worse after taking DayQuil for two days, see your doctor.

If you take DayQuil at night will it keep you awake?

Yes, DayQuil does not cause drowsiness and can make some people feel hyper or more alert, this can keep you awake and prevent you from sleeping.

Phenylephrine the active ingredient in DayQuil works by stimulating the alpha-adrenergic receptors which may make it responsible for central nervous system stimulant effects such as restlessness, anxiety, and insomnia.

Can You Take DayQuil at Night?

No, taking DayQuil at night is not recommended because it contains phenylephrine which doesn’t last as long as other decongestants like pseudoephedrine (Sudafed). You shouldn’t use DayQuil at night because it can make your heart race or make you feel anxious, restless and cause a sleepless night. DayQuil can make some people feel hyper or more alert if taken at night.

DayQuil can cause other unwanted side effects. Most of these side effects don’t need medical attention. Rather, they may go away as your body adjusts to the medication. You can ask your doctor about any mild side effects you have that are bothersome or don’t go away.

More common side effects

The more common side effects of DayQuil can include:

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

Also, avoid drinking grapefruit juice while taking this drug. Grapefruit juice might increase the levels of dextromethorphan, one of the ingredients in DayQuil. Higher levels increase your chance of side effects such as nervousness and dizziness.

Serious side effects

One serious side effect of DayQuil is an allergic reaction. Symptoms include:

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

Contact your doctor right away or get emergency medical help if you have any of these symptoms while taking DayQuil.

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