More Info on Claritin-D Indications

Claritin-D Uses for the Common Cold

Sneezing, runny nose, scratchy throat, nasal congestion -- everyone knows the first signs of a cold, probably the most common illness known to exist. Although the common cold is usually mild, with cold symptoms lasting one to two weeks, it is a leading cause of doctor visits and missed days from school and work.
The common cold is caused by viruses (see Causes of Common Cold), and there is no known cure. However, there are several medications that can help relieve symptoms. Claritin-D is approved for treating nasal congestion due to the common cold. It is effective for this purpose because it contains a decongestant (pseudoephedrine). The antihistamine component of Claritin-D (loratadine) is probably of little use in treating the common cold.

How Does Claritin-D Work?

Allergies occur when the body's immune system reacts to normally harmless substances that do not bother most people. This reaction is partly caused by the release of histamine from certain cells in the body. Loratadine, one component of Claritin-D, is an antihistamine, which means it blocks histamine from binding to histamine receptors and causing allergy symptoms. Since histamine is responsible for many of the symptoms of allergies, blocking it can be helpful. However, antihistamines are not helpful for nasal congestion, which is why loratadine is combined with pseudoephedrine.
Pseudoephedrine (the other component of Claritin-D) is a nasal decongestant that works by constricting the blood vessels in the nose, helping to relieve nasal congestion. It is useful for relieving nasal congestion due to many causes, including allergies and the common cold.

Claritin-D Uses in Children

Claritin-D is approved for children age 12 and older. Talk with your child's healthcare provider before giving the drug to a younger child.
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