Cetirizine 10mg Hay Fever & Allergy Relief - 30 Tablets

  • Antihistamine used to treat hay fever and allergies
  • Relieves itching, sneezing and other symptoms
  • Non drowsy

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What are Cetirizine tablets?

Cetirizine is a non-drowsy antihistamine medicine. You can buy Cetirizine on prescription, but it can also be purchased over the counter.

This medicine provides swift and effective relief from the symptoms of common allergic conditions like hay fever and food allergies.

Cetirizine tablets can be taken by adults and children over the age of 6. It is also available as Cetirizine Oral Solution, which can be used by children as young as 2 years old for hay fever and skin allergies.

What is Cetirizine used to treat?

Cetirizine 10mg tablets contain the active ingredient cetirizine hydrochloride, which is an effective non-drowsy antihistamine used to relieve the symptoms associated with a number of common allergies including:

  • Hay fever
  • Certain food allergies
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Eczema
  • Hives
  • Reactions to insect bites or stings

Because it is a non-drowsy antihistamine, you are far less likely to suffer from drowsiness while taking Cetirizine tablets compared to other antihistamine medicines.

It is suitable for adults and children aged 6 and above.

How does Cetirizine work?

Cetirizine belongs to a group of medicines known as antihistamines. It contains the active ingredient cetirizine hydrochloride, which works by blocking the effects of a chemical called histamine.

Histamine is produced by your body when you come into contact with an allergy trigger, such as pollen, animal fur or dust. Histamine is useful for the body in most cases, but in an allergic reaction it causes unpleasant symptoms such as:

  • Stuffy, runny, itchy, or blocked nose
  • itchy eyes
  • watering eyes
  • itchy red skin that can become cracked
  • nausea and diarrhoea
  • swollen eyes, face or tongue
  • hives
  • tight chest, wheezing

By blocking histamines effects, your symptoms can be alleviated.

You should start to feel better within one hour of taking Cetirizine.

How to take Cetirizine tablets

Swallow Cetirizine tablets whole with a drink of water. This medicine can be taken with or without food.

Adults and children over the age of 12 should take one tablet each day.

Children between the ages of 6 and 11 should take half a tablet twice a day.

If you have been prescribed Cetirizine, follow your doctor’s instructions. Read the patient information leaflet before you start to take this medicine. Speak to your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure how to take it.

Who can use Cetirizine tablets?

Cetirizine 10mg tablets provide effective relief from the symptoms of allergies and hay fever, but they are not suitable for everyone to use.

You should not use this medication if:

  • You are allergic to cetirizine hydrochloride or any of the other ingredients contained in this medicine (please refer to the Ingredients tab for full details)
  • You have a severe kidney disease
  • You are known to be allergic to hydroxyzine
  • You are known to be allergic to any drugs from the piperazine family of medicines, such as buclizine, meclozine, cyclizine or levocetirizine

This medicine is not suitable for children under the age of 6.

Speak to your doctor before you use Cetirizine if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Always read the patient information leaflet for full details on why Cetirizine tablets may not be suitable for you.

Can you buy Cetirizine over the counter?

This medication is available to buy without a prescription and can be bought in pharmacies and supermarkets.

Can you buy Cetirizine online in the UK?

You can buy Cetirizine online from Medicine Direct without a prescription. Just complete our simple online questionnaire to make sure that it is the right medicine for your problem. One of our registered prescribers will check your answers to ensure this is a suitable medication for you.

Next day delivery is available if you place your order by 2pm.

For your own safety, do not order medicine online unless you are ordering from a registered UK pharmacy, like Medicine Direct. We are regulated by the General Pharmaceutical Council. Furthermore, our prescribers are all registered with the General Medical Council, meaning they can prescribe medicine just like your local GP.

Cetirizine alternatives

Sadly, there is no cure for allergies. However, there are plenty of medicines available which can effectively keep the symptoms under control. Other antihistamine medicines like Levocetirizine and Loratadine are also available from Medicine Direct after you have filled out our online consultation form; they will work to relieve your symptoms in the same way as Cetirizine.

Additionally, Cetirizine can be bought as an oral solution, which is suitable for young children to take.

We also stock various corticosteroid nasal sprays for allergies. Corticosteroid medicines have anti-inflammatory properties, meaning these sprays will work to relieve the inflammation of the nasal passages, which often occurs with problems like hay fever.

To view our full range of hay fever treatments, visit the Hay Fever condition page on our website.

 

Certirizine Dosage

Our pharmacists and prescribers follow NICE guidelines when prescribing Cetirizine Tablets.

For adults and children over 12 years old, the average dose for Cetirizine is 10mg, which should be taken as one tablet once a day. This is to relieve symptoms of allergies and the symptoms of hay fever.

If you suffer from kidney problems the dose is likely to be lower than this.

If a doctor has prescribed Cetirizine tablets for your child, they will base the dosage on their age or weight. The usual recommended dose for children aged 6 to 12 years old is 5mg, to be taken as half a tablet twice a day.

How should Cetirizine Tablets be used?

Always take Cetirizine tablets exactly as instructed by your doctor or pharmacist. Read the patient information leaflet thoroughly before you start taking the tablets; speak to your doctor or pharmacist for further advice if you are still unsure how to take them.

Cetirizine tablets can be taken with or without food.

Swallow the tablets whole with a drink of water, juice or milk. Do not crush or chew the tablets.

When should Cetirizine tablets be used?

In some circumstances, you might only need to take Cetirizine on days you are suffering from allergy symptoms, such as being exposed to an allergy trigger like dust or animal fur.

On the other hand, you may need to take the tablets on a regular basis to prevent the symptoms of allergies. For instance, you may need to take it regularly during the spring and summer months to stop hay fever symptoms.

What if I take more than I am supposed to?

This medicine is considered to be generally safe, so taking an extra dose is not likely to do you any harm.

Taking an extra dose may result in you or your child suffering from some of the common undesired effects associated with this medicine. If this happens, speak to your doctor or pharmacist for guidance.

What if I forget to take it?

If you forget to take a dose, just take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, just skip the dose you missed and continue taking Cetirizine as normal.

Never take an extra dose of medicine to try and make up for missing a previous one.

If your child is taking this medicine and you forget to give them a dose, you can give them the missed dose if it is within 4 hours of when they should have originally taken it.

If you only remember more than 4 hours later, skip the dose they missed and wait until the next scheduled dose. Then, carry on as usual.

To ensure you do not forget to take your medication, try to take the tablets at the same time every day. Some people find it useful to set an alarm as a reminder.

How long does it take to work?


After taking Cetirizine, adults and children should start to feel better within one hour.

How long does it last?


The medicine should take effect for 24 hours. If required, you should take another tablet after 24 hours if your symptoms start to come back.

What if I take twice the dosage?


You should never take a higher dosage of a medicine than your doctor or pharmacist has instructed you to. Taking twice the dosage will not make the medicine any more effective and may increase your risk of side effects.

Certirizine 10mg side effects

Like any medicine, Cetirizine can cause side effects, although they will not affect everyone who takes it.

The common adverse effects of this medicine may affect up to 1 in 10 people who take it and include:

  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Diarrhoea
  • Dry mouth
  • Feeling sick
  • Sore throat
  • Cold-like symptoms

Children are more likely to suffer from diarrhoea and cold-like symptoms than adults.

Uncommon reactions can include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Feeling weak or generally unwell
  • Tingling in the hands and feet
  • Itching and/or a rash
  • Agitation

Speak to your doctor or pharmacist if any of these reactions bother you or do not go away.

Please note, this list is not exhaustive. Please refer to the Side Effects tab for information on rarer and more serious undesired effects you may experience.

Serious Side Effects

A list of more common side effects can be found on the main product page.

Rare side effects of Cetirizine may occur in 1 in every 1,000 users and include:

  • Abnormal liver function
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Swelling as a result of water retention
  • Convulsions
  • Weight gain
  • Urticaria
  • Insomnia, feeling aggressive, confused or depressed

Side effects with an unknown frequency are:

  • Joint pain
  • Rash
  • Pruritus
  • Suicidal thoughts or nightmares
  • Hepatitis
  • Amnesia
  • Vertigo
  • Urinary retention

Stop using this medicine and seek medical attention if you have any of the reactions listed above. You should also do this if you have any unexplained bruising or bleeding.

Serious allergic reaction

In very rare cases, you may suffer a serious allergic reaction to Cetirizine and require immediate treatment in a hospital.

You must either dial 999 or go to A&E straight away if:

  • You develop a skin rash that may have red, itchy, swollen, blistered or peeling skin
  • You are finding it difficult to breathe or speak
  • You have swelling in your face, mouth, tongue, lips or throat
  • You have tightness in your chest or throat
  • You are wheezing

Always refer to the patient information leaflet for comprehensive information on side effects and how to cope with them.

If you are worried about side effects, we strongly advise you to discuss your concerns with your doctor or pharmacist before you start using this medicine.

Certirizine Warnings and drug interactions

Before taking Cetirizine tablets, make sure your doctor or pharmacist is aware if you are currently using any other form of medicine.

Take special care with Cetirizine tablets if:

You are using any of the following medications:

  • Midodrine, for low blood pressure
  • Ritonavir, to treat the HIV infection
  • Any medicines that may make you drowsy, make it difficult to urinate, give you dry mouth (taking Cetirizine alongside these medicines may make these side effects worse)

Certain herbal remedies might be unsuitable to take alongside Cetirizine, particularly those that make it difficult to urinate, or cause drowsiness or dry mouth.

Speak to your doctor before taking this medicine if:

  • You have any kidney problems; you may need to take a lower dose than usual
  • You have any predisposition factors of urinary retention
  • You suffer from epilepsy or are at risk of convulsions

Do not give this medicine to children who are under 6 years old.

Always read the patient information leaflet thoroughly before you start taking a new medicine for full details on warnings, precautions and a full ist of medicines that may interact with Cetirizine tablets.

If you have any questions or concerns at all, please do not hesitate to speak to your doctor or pharmacist for advice.

Can I drive while taking these tablets?

While Cetirizine is a non-drowsy antihistamine, it may still cause drowsiness while taking it.

Do not drive, operate machinery or ride a bike if you suffer drowsiness, dizziness or any other adverse effects which may impair your ability to think or see clearly.

Can I use Cetirizine tablets if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

Speak to your doctor before you use Cetirizine if you are currently pregnant, think you might be pregnant or are trying to get pregnant.

There may be a safer alternative medication for you to use to control allergy symptoms or hay fever.

Similarly, please speak to your doctor or pharmacist before taking this medicine if you are currently breastfeeding. This is especially important if your baby has any health problems, was born premature or with a low birth weight.

Only small amounts of the medicine will get into your breast milk, but you should still check to make sure it is safe to use.

We recommend BUMPs for additional information. 

Certirizine Ingredients

The active ingredient contained in this medicine is cetirizine hydrochloride.

The inactive ingredients also contained are: pregelatinized starch, lactose, maize starch, povidone, magnesium stearate, macrogol 6000, basic polymethacrylate, titanium dioxide (E171) and talc.

This medicine comes in packets of either 7, 10 or 30 tablets.

Delivery Company Delivery Service Price Details
Royal Mail UK Delivery Standard UK Tracked £2.99 3 - 4 Working Day Delivery
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Next Day Delivery - Tracked £5.95 Order by 2pm (subject to Dr approval) Next Working Day Delivery
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Next Day Tracked Morning Delivery by 12:00pm £12.95 Next Working Day Morning Delivery by 12:00pm
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Tracked Saturday Delivery £9.95

Delivery specified for Saturday

Order Friday by 2pm (subject to Dr approval)

Please note that next day delivery to Northern Ireland, Scottish Highlands & Islands and British Isles cannot be guaranteed. Please contact our team for more information.

This page has recently been medically reviewed by Hussain Abdeh MPharm: 2076091

Updated on: 29/07/2021

This content has been written by our Superintendent Pharmacist Hussain Abdeh and has been medically reviewed by our Pharmacist Sonia Khan

Hussain Abdeh Superintendent Pharmacist at Medicine Direct

Hussain Abdeh
MPharm: 2211840

Pharmacist Independent Prescriber

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