- Antihistamines: These medications work by restricting histamine from interacting with the nasal tissue, hence preventing the signs of allergies even before they start. When you come in contact with something that you are allergic to, your body cells secrete histamine, a chemical that causes itching and sneezing. Hence, these medications prevent the cells from releasing a whole cascade of such allergy-inducing chemicals.
- Decongestants: These medications reduce the swelling in your face, throat, and nose, relieve the pressure, and improve airflow through your sinuses.
- Topical Corticosteroids: Although not recommended quite often, these medications also help in controlling itching, swelling, and inflammations caused due to allergies.
Allergy medications come in various forms like pills, liquids, nasal sprays, eye drops, skin creams, and injections. Choosing the best over-the-counter allergy medicines is very important for dealing with allergies and getting your life back to normal. Here are some of the best allergy medications for effective and fast allergy relief.
Zyrtec (Cetirizine): Cetirizine is the generic name for Zyrtec, a second generation antihistamine, that works great for nasal allergies or allergic rhinitis. It can be taken on a daily basis during certain times of the year, depending upon the severity of the allergic reaction.
Benadryl (Diphenhydramine): Diphenhydramine is the generic name for Bendadryl, which is an excellent antihistamine. Though it makes people sleepy, it works quite fast, and is best for sudden unexpected allergic reactions. It also works great for itchy skin rashes, but has an effect that lasts only for 4 to 6 hours.
Cortaid: Cortaid is an anti-itching cream that contains 1% hydrocortisone as an active ingredient. It helps in curing any kind of skin allergic reaction, caused by poison oak or ivy, chemicals in makeup, shampoo, or even toothpaste. This cream, along with one of the antihistamines, can surely help you in treating skin allergies and rashes.
Visine-A: These eye drops contain two main components: naphazoline hydrochloride and pheniramine maleate. Naphazoline hydrochloride is a decongestant. It constricts the blood vessels on the surface of the eye, and helps in removing redness from the eyes. Pheniramine maleate is an antihistamine, which does not allow histamine to cause allergic symptoms.
Ocean Sinus Irrigation: It is a qualified salt water solution, that comes in a simple spray bottle or a large canister. It cleans out your nose and sinuses, especially if you have a sinus infection. It also helps in removing mucous present in the back of your throat. Thus, the salt water solution helps flush everything out, and prevents allergic reactions from occurring. This can be referred to as the best over the counter allergy medicine, as it does not cause any side effects.
Crolom Eye Drops: These eye drops prevent allergies of the eyes from happening, but do not treat the symptoms directly. They block the cells in your eyes from secreting chemicals that cause itching. Since it is completely safe, you can use these drops on a daily basis, starting a couple of weeks before you usually get eye allergies.
These were some best allergy medicines over the counter. They can be taken before the time of the year you actually get allergies. If you are already having the symptoms, it may take a couple of weeks to know, whether these medications are helping or not. If the symptoms persist or get worse, it’s recommended to consult a doctor, and take the necessary prescribed medication.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.