Atarax is used for treating anxiety, for sedation before and after general anesthesia, and to treat itching due to certain allergic conditions, including hives and contact dermatitis (e.g., poison ivy). It also may be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
How to use
Use Atarax as directed by your doctor.
Take Atarax by mouth with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation.
Swallow Atarax whole. Do not crush or chew before swallowing.
Continue to take Atarax even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses. Taking Atarax at the same time each day will help you to remember to take it.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Atarax.
Drug Class and Mechanism
Atarax is an antihistamine. It works by affecting the brain to reduce anxiety. It also has other activities, including opening breathing tubes, relieving pain or allergy symptoms, and preventing or treating nausea and vomiting caused by motion sickness.
If you miss a dose of Atarax, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Store Atarax between 59 and 77 degrees F (15 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Atarax out of the reach of children and away from pets.
Do not use Atarax if:
you are allergic to any ingredient in Atarax;
you are taking sodium oxybate (GHB);
you are in your first 3 months of pregnancy.
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Some medical conditions may interact with Atarax . Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
if you have asthma, glaucoma, difficulty urinating, urinary or intestinal blockage, a prostate disease, or a blood disease
if you drink alcoholic beverages
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Atarax . Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
Sodium oxybate (GHB) because side effects such as an increase in sleep duration and slowed breathing may occur
Possible Side Effects
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Drowsiness; dry mouth.
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); involuntary movements.
Atarax may cause drowsiness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Atarax with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it. Avoid drinking alcohol or using medicines that may cause drowsiness (eg, sleep aids, muscle relaxers) while you are using Atarax ; it may add to their effects. Ask your pharmacist if you have questions about which medicines may cause drowsiness.
The effectiveness of Atarax as anxiety treatment for longer than 4 months is not known.
Use Atarax with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
Atarax should not be used in NEWBORNS; safety and effectiveness in newborns have not been confirmed.
PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Do not use Atarax if you are in your first 3 months of pregnancy. If you think you may be pregnant, contact your doctor right away. It is not known if Atarax is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Atarax .